Social media branding is more crucial now than ever in digital marketing. A recent study says that it only takes 10 seconds for someone to develop an impression of your company’s brand. You need optimization tips that get you noticed, so you are not left in the dust of that 10-second consumer decision.
With the thick of competition in social media, it is now indispensable for businesses to have effective brand strategies. The key to social media branding is optimization. Social media optimization lets your brand stand out in the crowd and sets you apart from the competition. The right social media branding optimization techniques get you the followers, subscribers, and conversions you need to keep people abuzz over your brand or account.
What is Social Media Branding?
Social Media Branding is the strategy of managing your brand’s image, identity, and market position, so it remains consistent across digital networks and platforms. Consistency in engagement methods with your target audience is also part of social media branding. With such consistency, the hope is that you would steadily grow in social media influence through the people that follow, subscribe, or connect with you.
Through branding optimization, you can increase your brand awareness, generate leads, gain customer loyalty, increase sales, and provide more personalized customer service. Among these benefits, it is brand awareness that 76% of businesses aim for as their top social media goal, according to Social Fresh.
People flock to social media because of the curated nature of its content. Audiences can scrape news, get valuable information, interact with the digital community, all in one place. Since active social media users worldwide are at 3.8 billion or 49% of the world’s population, it’s no wonder that brands want to infiltrate and dominate in social media branding. It is where they have more chances of potentially reaching all sorts of people from various demographics.
Social Media Branding Optimization Tips
Here are some optimization tips you can use to get your brand noticed and supported in social media today:
1. Choose the right social networks
Before starting any kind of strategy for social media branding, you need to cover the basics first. You need to be clear first about your brand’s identity, your target audience, the type of content you need to make, and the design theme you are going for.
For instance, if you are trying to reach young women ages 18 to 26, your main social media campaigns need to be on Facebook. Your identity must appeal to this age group, so your content and design need to be vibrant, bold, and colorful. You’d need high-quality videos and images and would need content for FB stories and even Instagram or IGTV, that this age group also uses.
You might have to add some TikTok promotions because it is also in demand with this demographic nowadays. But shifting your attention to female audiences 46 years old to 55 years old would change your strategies and content. You’d have to focus your campaign on Pinterest. You’d have to add instructional content and infographics, and would have to produce short, instructional videos as well.
Image source: SLIDETEAM
It goes to show that you need to focus on the right social networks for the right target market, and this takes planning on your part, whether you are doing this alone or with a team.
Facebook is the melting pot of all types of audiences, with over one billion daily active users. Facebook promotes organic relationship-building with your audience. Every interaction and engagement is important to nurture relationships, especially with new customers. When you know your niche well, you’ll have a clearer insight into your social media branding strategies to make your business stand out.
2. Be unique and authentic
Your social media presence must be distinct or unique, or else you will not be as memorable or impactful. You cannot be truly unique as there will be other brands offering similar products and services you may be offering. But you have an identity, personality, and back story that is unique to you. It is the reason why there is such an emphasis on the storytelling approach even in digital content marketing and social media marketing because it identifies a brand’s uniqueness and distinct personality.
Plan your campaigns well. Come up with original ideas, or if you are going for what’s trending, make sure you add your brand’s flavor to it. Use your brand’s distinct voice that generates emotions and responses effectively with your target audience. This voice you have as a brand needs to be consistent, no matter the trend or season, that your audience will distinctly recognize is yours, whatever platform they see your brand in.
Make your audience’s experience with your brand more personal. Story-based content quickly gets millions of followers because it is more engaging than traditional content.
Social media user-generated content (UGC) is also on the rise and adds value to your brand and your users’ experience.
3. Personalize your brand
Personalization is not just trending these days. Since it improves your brand’s engagement with your audience significantly, it affects other areas of social media optimization (SMO) as well. If you tie up your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts with your SMO efforts well, it helps boost both your SMO and SEO rankings.
Personalization adds an endearing touch to your audience and makes you more credible for them. That means your tone and voice needs to be consistent through eye-catching imagery. You need to be relevant but stay authentic and uncompromising.
Check who influences your target audience. You don’t need to copy what these influencer brands or individuals do, but get a better insight as to the qualities, attitudes, and personalities that touch the pulse of your audience well. Once you have this insight, you can better judge your campaigns if you are in keeping with your brand identity, and if the campaign will be a hit or not based on what your audience and customers care about.
4. Set SMART goals
Even in social media branding, SMART goals are so important to increase your social media presence steadily. A brand’s digital marketing team –SEO, writers, designers, and the like– needs to set goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART).
For instance, if you aim to get 25% of your sales revenue from your brand’s organic and social media campaigns, your SMART goals can be:
- Specific: Target Facebook and Instagram, where your brand’s demographic is.
- Measurable: We will use Google Keyword Planner and Sprout Social to measure data.
- Achievable: Within 12 months
- Relevant: Increase social media presence and decrease reliance on paid ads
- Time-bound: Reassessment after 12 months if goals were met. If yes, easing up on paid ads will commence, and strengthening social media strategies will continue.
With SMART goals, your team stays focused and motivated. You cannot be too lofty on your dreams for your brand that no amount of accomplishment seems to do much for the big picture. Yes, keep the big picture or the vision and mission of your brand at the forefront, but break it down into consumable, actionable parts, so your team feels they are greatly contributing to the whole.
5. Be mindful of your design
Your brain digests images around 60,000 times faster than it does for text. So, does design matter? Certainly. Your brand design should match your social media marketing goals because it can make or break your campaign.
You need to know the design trends that are hitting it with audiences. For instance, what’s trending now are bold pops of color mixed with clean, simplistic designs. Trending typography is also bold and streamlined. There’s much use of white space as well, so it’s easy to look at and consume.
You also need to use the appropriate colors and themes depending on your brand. If you are selling food, then your color scheme should include hues of red, yellow, and orange because they make people hungry. Could you imagine Ronald McDonald in shades of green or Col. Sanders of KFC with a brown background instead of red? Those colors don’t look appetizing at all. But if your product is about earth-friendly, recyclable products, then suddenly green, brown, and other earth tones make sense.
Design is important. So be mindful of making your posts look appealing. You’ll know if your design works if you get those coveted views and shares. The content must also work well with the design theme. Add high-quality images as well or high-resolution videos to generate creative content that is compelling and memorable for your target audience.
6. Slay with storytelling
People support brands more when the story behind the brand resonates well with them. The competition in social media is quite stiff, so your brand needs to be set apart from others. It is possible with your brand’s story. Your brand’s story sustains your following. People follow you not just for your name or brand, but for the identity you carry, and the story that you tell. The humanity behind your brand is what they follow, and this human element is best expressed with the story you bring in every content you produce.
Again, be straightforward, sincere, and authentic in whatever you do or communicate as a brand. Kindra Hall, who helps individuals and companies promote their brands through intentional storytelling, says that the biggest mistake in storytelling is alluding to the story, but not telling it. Even if you are writing technical content, for example, it still needs to be relevant and easy-to-read, with the technical elements still helping to shape your brand’s story.
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Storytelling also encourages followers to engage well with your content. For example, a strong caption can entice people to react, comment, and share. Through storytelling, brands can discover new methods to stand out because the increased engagement from audiences will give them more insight regarding the effectiveness of their content and what content type created the most impact.
7. Draw inspiration from others
Check what your competition is doing, not to replicate what they do, but to get inspiration and insight for what’s trending. You can also check what areas in your niche the competition may not be covering or serving. You can take that opportunity to work on that underserved area so the whole target market benefits, not just for you but for your niche. This strategy is particularly beneficial for some small businesses that cannot go head-to-head with big-named brands. You can also focus on serving the same needs but more personalized to your locality. Local SEO is booming, so local SMO will too.
However, it is also critical to look beyond your niche for ideas and inspiration. For instance, digital marketers would sometimes draw inspiration from what’s trending in the art scene or maybe in the movie industry. In a time of global crisis, digital marketers and all kinds of brands are focusing on helping their target audience cope well amid the pandemic, even if health and public safety are outside their niche. As long as it affects the audience and customers you serve, you can cross over other niches in the service of your market.
It’s also beneficial to connect with your peers within your niche. One of the strongest points of this digital age is the sharing community, where there can be a healthy exchange of ideas and strategies, all in the name of improving the industry and giving people better service. Collaboration also fosters ingenuity and innovation, as great minds come together to push the boundaries further.
Conclusion: Social media branding improves your brand’s SMO
Optimizing social media branding is useful for both individual users and businesses. Social media is a tool so influential that its advantages, as well as its disadvantages, can affect one’s brand dramatically. But with careful social media planning, purposeful marketing strategies, and targeted engagements, you can optimize social media to your brand’s best advantage.
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