With 89 percent of B2B marketers reporting that brand awareness is their top goal, branding through social media marketing is a valuable endeavor for your business. Keep reading to find out why and how to build your brand through social media.
What Is Branding?
Branding is how you distinguish yourself from competitors and improve the recognizability of your company. It essentially sends a message to your audience about who you are as an organization. Effective branding will boost conversions and increase your ROI, so it is important to establish a clear brand identity.
One of the best ways to build your brand is through social media marketing. Using a few brand-focused social media strategies, you can improve your brand image, build audience trust and increase your recognizability. Here are five of the best strategies you can use across all platforms for branding through social media.
1. Be consistent in your branding.
The most crucial strategy for building your brand through social media marketing is presenting your business consistently across all of your social media platforms. Companies that are consistent are three to four times more likely to experience brand visibility. The average revenue increase attributed to consistent branding is 23 percent, so it truly pays to be consistent.
There are a few key aspects of your brand that you want to maintain across platforms:
Consistent visual branding throughout your social media marketing strategy is key to accomplishing your goals.
- Your logo as your profile picture. You have likely put a lot of time and consideration into the visual that represents your business. You should have an image that effectively represents what your business stands for while also being aesthetically pleasing and recognizable. Do not let your logo go to waste; make sure it is the primary symbol of your company and use it as your profile picture on every social media platform. By using the same logo consistently across platforms, your brand will be easily recognizable to your audience, which is likely also beneficial to your social media marketing goals.
- Color scheme and imagery. Maintaining a consistent color scheme in all of the graphics you create, as well as consistent imagery which embodies your brand image, will help boost recognition of your brand. In fact, color increases brand recognition by up to 80 percent. Creating a visual style guide, which outlines on-brand colors and image content, is an effective way to maintain visual consistency across all your platforms. Consistent visuals are not only beneficial to branding efforts, but also improve the ROI of your social media marketing campaigns more generally.
- Your biography and description. Effective branding is more than just visual. The words you choose to describe your business should be identical across platforms. Vastly different descriptions of your business and inconsistent links are unprofessional and confusing to your audience. Each profile should link to your website for more information, and every description of your business should match.
- Voice, tone and language. A huge part of branding is developing the personality of your business. To do this, you must present your brand’s voice consistently in every piece of content you produce. I would recommend including this in your brand style guidelines. Consider whether your brand is more formal or casual, or if you get straight to the point or use flowery language. You may also want to outline which terms should or should not be used to describe your products and/or services. The more consistent you can be across social media platforms in every aspect of your branding, the more effective your efforts will be.
2. Post quality social media marketing content frequently.
Using content marketing best practices in your social media marketing strategy is also an incredibly effective branding strategy. Branding is all about showing your audience who you are as a business. Posting high quality content will indicate that you are knowledgeable about your field and dedicated to benefiting your followers. This will boost your brand image and build audience trust in your brand. In fact, 91 percent of B2B marketers use content marketing to promote brand awareness.
One of the best ways to build your brand through social media marketing is by posting consistent and quality content.
Great content marketers follow the 80/20 rule of content creation:
- 80 percent of your content should be valuable to your audience, such as advice, information or simply uplifting messages. In order to actually be valuable to your audience, make sure that the content is relevant to them. Figure out who your audience is and produce content that they will find useful.
- Only 20 percent of your content should be self-promotional. Too much self-promotional content ruins your branding and social media marketing efforts, with 45 percent of consumers reporting that they will unfollow a brand on social media if their platform is dominated by self-promotion.
By primarily producing valuable content for your audience, you can establish yourself as an expert in your field and build trust with your followers.
It is also crucial that you post frequently. Posting regularly across all your social media platforms is how you maintain your audience’s engagement and build your credibility and brand trust. Optimal posting schedules can vary across platform, but when in doubt, posting once a day is a safe choice.
3. Tailor your content to the social media marketing platform.
Tailoring your content to each platform is a valuable social media marketing best practice and is also an effective branding tactic.
While consistency is key in branding, social media marketing best practices also require you to tailor your content to each platform. Because different platforms have vastly different audiences and uses, it is important that you use the specific best practices for each platform.
For example, LinkedIn is the most professional platform, so it is a good idea to use a more educated vocabulary and refined language. Instagram, on the other hand, is a more relaxed and image-based platform, so you should use high-quality and attention-grabbing images with shorter, more casual captions. How you engage your audience varies based on each platform, so make sure you tailor your content to the platform while maintaining your branding strategies.
It is also important to realize that you do not need to be on every social media platform. It would be a waste to put effort into marketing on a platform that does not cater to your target audience; make sure you figure out which platforms are right for your business before starting your social media marketing campaign.
4. Be authentic and transparent.
Maintaining an authentic brand image throughout your social media marketing strategy is key to building your audience’s trust.
Effective branding allows your audience to get to know who you are as a company and see how your values align with theirs. When designing your brand, you must identify what it is that your target audience is looking for in a company, and ensure that you embody those ideals.
In turn, effective branding through social media marketing will make sure that your social media pages accurately portray your brand values, mission and beliefs to your audience. With 64 percent of consumers citing shared values as the primary reason they have a relationship with a brand, this is one of the most effective ways to really connect with your audience. It is also crucial that you are transparent with your audience. Give them behind-the-scenes looks at your company, host an “ask me anything” series on your social media channels and allow your customers to really see who your brand is.
5. Capitalize on the “social” in social media.
Finally, make sure you utilize the social aspect of social media and prioritize audience engagement as one of your social media marketing goals.
Sparking conversations with your audience through your social media marketing strategy is a fantastic way to personalize your brand.
One of the most effective branding strategies that will boost your brand image and build relationships with your audience is to start conversations with your viewers. There are numerous strategies for boosting engagement on your social media pages. Conversations could stem from a simple call to action in your caption, such as “Comment your favorite ______ below!” or “What is your best ______ tip?”
You could also do something much more elaborate to increase the dialogue around your brand by running a contest across your social media platforms. Or you could take a more hands-on approach and initiate engagement with your audience yourself by commenting on their posts, for example agreeing with them if they give good advice or replying to a question they ask. These strategies help humanize your brand and build personal relationships between you and your audience.
Read more: A Complete Guide to Branded Content Strategy