When you think of the term “building your brand”, what comes to mind? Many people assume having a brand is only for big corporations or six figure businesses but that’s so not the case.
Your branding is important whether you’re a solopreneur growing a business or you have a ten person team. Social media can be a great way to build your brand, whether you’re an individual or you’re a ten person team.
Why build your brand on social media? One notable reason is the sheer amount of people who use social networks every single day. Having an online presence, and a social media presence, is almost crucial in this day and age (though that doesn’t mean you have to be on all platforms) and it’s an easy way to start building a brand around yourself and your business.
Strategy: Identify the Right Platforms to Use for Your Business
We are big believers that it’s not necessary to be on every single social platform, especially if you’re just starting out. It’s important to know the right social platforms to participate on so you don’t waste your coveted time.
But how do you find the “right” social platforms for your business? Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
What platforms does your audience use the most?
Where does your current traffic come from?
What platforms do you competitors use?
Once you’ve identified the right platforms, you can then start to develop your voice. What do we mean by voice? You can start to figure out the voice you want to use throughout your writing and social media by answering these questions:
What do you want to be known for?
How will you share your message?
What value do you bring to your audience?
What adjectives would describe your business’ culture?
How can you show authenticity in posts?
Strategy: Create an Editorial Calendar
Now that we’ve nailed down the platforms you’ll use and the voice of your brand, you can start to come up with an editorial calendar. Now don’t shy away from this step. It may seem like a huge undertaking and too rigid of a project, but determining the basics for your editorial calendar will help you be clear on expectations.
Here are some questions to consider:
How often will you post on each platform?
What type of content will you post?
What third-party content are you going to share?
Who is in charge of finding/scheduling the content?
What scheduling platforms will you be using?
How can you be a thought leader in your industry?
It’s important to be consistent with the type of content you share across all platforms you’re using. We suggest narrowing down five to seven categories of content you’ll share.
Strategy: Create Share Worthy Visuals
Now the fun begins, creating amazing social media graphics. We suggest having your domain or logo in every graphic you use, so keep branding consistent across all platforms.
Questions to answer:
How will these graphics be created? Canva, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc?
Who will create these graphics? Will you need to outsource?
Are you using stock photos, original photos, or graphics or a mix of all three?
How can your graphics stand out from your competitors?
What filters/tone do you want your graphics to have?
You’ll want to make sure you have branded graphics sized correctly for each platform as they’ll differ and don’t forget to use your brand colors. Also, make sure your headlines are large and easy to read. You want to catch people’s eyes when they’re scrolling mindlessly through their phone and small text won’t cut it. I suggest creating a template for each social platform so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you need a new graphic.
Strategy: Build Relationships To get Yourself Noticed
You can start to get noticed by your target audience by using hashtags and following people your target audience would follow. You can start to tag and mention brands and people you admire and would want to work with in the future. Essentially, you’ll want to start to build real relationships with these people. Behind every social media presence is a real person, so try and connect on a deeper level.
Here are some questions to help you get started:
What brands/influencers does my target audience follow?
How can I partner with these brands/influencers?
Who would I love to partner with?
What hashtags does my target audience use and follow?
What excites my target audience the most?
Remember that brands and influencers you partner with don’t necessarily have to be people with mega followings. Sometimes it’s even better to build relationships with people who have a small following but have really good engagement with their audience.
Strategy: Increase Engagement
While the algorithms are forever changing, engagement is still an important piece to growing your brand on social media.
Here are some questions you’ll need answer:
Who will be responsible for engagement? You or something you outsource?
How often will you engage with other users? How many times per day/week?
How can you foster a community around your brand?
Leave comments on your customer’s profiles, respond back to people’s replies on your own account, and write genuine feedback to the people you admire and want to work with. These small acts of services can have a big impact!
Strategy: Analyze Your Work Quarterly
You put in all that work and now it’s time to see what’s been working and what strategies needs to be tweaked.
Every quarter, analyze each of your social networks. Notice what types of posts got the most feedback and least feedback. Write down ideas of how you can improve or new things you want to try. I suggest every quarter because sometimes you don’t know the return on something until weeks or months down the road. Give it time, but you know something is immediately not working then feel free to change it up.
Prioritizing your social media branding will not only help you connect more with your target audience, but it will also help you be more strategic throughout your entire business leading you to get better results.