Bringing brands to life on social media

Social media – everyone’s doing it! Whereas a few years ago it was relatively easy for brands to make a splash on social media, differentiating themselves from their competitors, most brands have now got presences in place and aren’t doing too bad a job. However, whilst many brands are using social media effectively as a communication channel, sharing their latest news and promotions and responding to customer service queries in real time, it is still a small majority that exploit the full brand marketing potential of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram et al.

So how can you take your brand’s social media marketing to the next level? Our advice to brands big and small is simple: get the basics right and then get creative!

The foundations of a strong brand presence on social media

A strong tone of voice

Many of the most popular brands on social media ooze personality. Much of this comes from what they say as well as how they say it. They are also all consistent, indicating that their social media team all sing from the same song sheet (aka follow a good set of tone of voice guidelines!) Establishing and maintaining an appropriate brand voice can be a trickier task than you may think. The CW team are always happy to help brands design and/or deliver this.

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A clear visual identity

It’s amazing how many brands overlook branding on social media. Very few companies would forget to include their logo or to use their font or brand colours when advertising in traditional media for example. It can be just as hard to stand out and achieve brand recognition on social media. The brands with the strongest presences tend to all use different design motifs to ensure that their posts are easily identified in crowded newsfeeds.

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A responsive approach

In social media marketing timing is everything. Whilst it’s practical to have a strong content plan in place, this needs to be flexible allowing for posts to be made on the fly, taking into account current events or trending topics.

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Rarely talking about yourself

The most popular people in life as in social media are rarely those that talk about themselves all the time. In recent years most brands have come to the realisation that their audiences don’t like to be broadcast marketing messages via social media. Instead they want brands to close the gap between brand and consumer and to be more personable than ever before in their brand communications. A good starting point when planning content is the identification of interests shared by the audience and the brand. Then it’s time to get creative. What kind of content is likely to inspire, delight or surprise? How this fit in with your over-arching strategy? How might this work cross-platform?

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Actively welcoming fan interactions

By responding publicly to fan interactions a strong signal is sent to your fan base: ‘we care’. The number of ‘lurkers’ on the various social media platforms indicates that whilst they may not be inclined to interact themselves, many social media users enjoy observing the interactions of others. We often find that some of the Facebook posts that receive the most clicks are those that have inspired conversations in the comments; users are as interested in their community’s interactions with each other as they are the content of the brand’s post.

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Over the last few years we’ve worked with a range of brands to breathe life into their social media presences. Brand character design and activation is a speciality of ours. Not only have we managed the social media presences of household names including Sugar Puffs brand character The Honey Monster, we’ve also activated presences for niche brands such as the Dormen Food Company. Read how we gave the Dormen Butler a voice on social media here.

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