There are a total of 2.1 million negative brand mentions on a daily basis. So imagine you are in charge of managing the brand reputation of some of the multi-million companies that service millions daily. Seems challenging, doesn’t it?
On the other hand, how is your brand doing at the moment? Increasing brand awareness has become a mission of every entrepreneur and small business, and with the amount of self-censorship and planning that we invest in posting a simple update, it seems that branding has become an individual occupation of many.
But do you have a branding strategy? And how is it working out for you? The great majority of companies and entrepreneurs often lose focus and spread their efforts all over the place, neglecting their primary channels. So let’s revise yours and emulate the top dogs to enhance your branding strategy.
This is that type of advice you used to get at the very beginning of your career, but you’ve simply neglected it because it seemed oversimplified at that moment. However, brand consistency isn’t helpful just for your clients who will run your brand through the search engine, but also for the search engines themselves.
There is a thing called NAP consistency and it is very important for your local listings and your off-site SEO. Keeping your name, address, phone number and all other data updated and valid will make you more accessible. Your search rankings will improve and your clients will be able to reach you faster.
For this reason, when you are designing a social media strategy, always start by using a tool such as Knowem. This tool will instantly check the availability of your name by running it through a great number of social media networks. Once you’ve determined which name is available across multiple platforms, bear in mind that your profile picture and every other information you are entering has to be consistent as well. That way your clients will be able to recognize you within a second.
Now to elaborate a bit more on the given example: you are probably well aware that you should also keep your brand’s colors and message consistent. This is extremely important, especially if your audience is in the ballpark of a twenty-something crowd. Believe it or not, 60% of Millennials expect the exact same experience from a brand in both offline and online communication and overall experience.
So, are there any channels you’ve neglected? Make sure they are not popping out in searches, and if they are – update your profiles.
Building a Community
Instead of looking for followers, you should look for community members. Although thousands of followers on Twitter and hundreds of likes on your Facebook page may seem impressive to some, those numbers are insignificant if you are not engaging people with your brand.
As far as your social media strategy goes, make sure that you have a posting schedule and that you are honoring it. We’ve covered this topic a few weeks back, so if you are looking for a way to save time and automate your posting schedule, read this article.
Preferably, you will target your audience, determine which social media network is popular within your niche and give priority to that particular channel. When you acquire a new follower, don’t be afraid to engage in conversation. If you’ve promised something to them, make sure you honor your promise.
Your social media profiles can make or break your brand, so take it in all seriousness and maintain your custom-tailored tone at all times.
You can also build your own Slack community and invite your brand advocates to join you there. If you have a good proposal and you can promise them some insights about your company and products, this is the perfect way to stay in touch with your audience.
No matter in which industry or niche you operate, you certainly have a virtual “mentor” who is your role model. This is usually a person who is successful in your particular niche and within your market. What you need to do is analyze and follow their examples. And don’t just concentrate on one of your competitors, track and “steal” ideas from as many as you can.
Your competition may just be your key driving force. As soon as you realize you can gain advantage by following steps of your successful competition, you should never lose track of it.
You would be surprised how many companies have thrived only by staying on track with their competition. The late Steve Jobs always emphasized that it is the competition that kept him working and kept him productive. Without his rivals his motivation would surely drop as well.
Make sure that the pillars of your brand are safe and sound, secured by your self-discipline and your consistency. Building a brand is never an easy job, but don’t get discouraged. It takes one to three years for a company to build a brand and spread brand awareness. It seems like a long period of time, doesn’t it? Well, all the more reason to start today.