The Keys to Proper Branding on Social Media
The lure of social media is simple: connection. In the past, branding efforts focused around building up a brand and culture that people would recognize, but it wasn't very personal. You did it all at a distance. You hoped a billboard or a TV commercial enhanced your brand, but you didn't get direct interaction. With social media, you do. Potential customers can contact you directly. You can respond to them and engage with them and evaluate their feedback. It's as close to a face-to-face meeting as we're ever likely to see. You have to know how to work your brand into the online community if you want to thrive.
Finding Niche Communities
The first thing to keep in mind is that niche communities already exist for nearly anything you can think of. It doesn't matter how large the overall interest is if you can find that community. It could be mountaineering, scuba diving, comic books, black and white movies, the best delis in New York or anything else. It's as diverse as the world at large, but everything has a community and everyone who wants to join can do so.
In the past, geographic difference kept these people far apart from one another. Someone who loves skydiving in their small Midwestern town may literally be the only person in town who does; the same could be true for a birding enthusiast in the Pacific Northwest or someone who loves 1950s science fiction novels in the Florida suburbs. These days, no matter how small the interest, people can find their communities on social media.
This absolutely opens up opportunities for online marketing and social media branding efforts. You can now reach out to these people regardless of geographic location. You may have a handful of people in every major city, and it used to feel like branding was impossible because these groups were too hard to find, but now you have thousands of people in one online location. Their love and passion for that niche subject brings them together, and that's where you target them. The internet does half of the work for you.
How to Build Your Brand
The next thing to consider is exactly how to build your brand. A few key tips to keep in mind include:
- Creating content that people actively want to share, thus expanding the potential impact tremendously.
- Creating content that is valuable to the user, both inspiring them to click the link and making them see you as an authority within that niche.
- Finding the right social media platform for your brands; for instance, Instagram is great for image-driven content and Facebook is better for large-scale community-building efforts.
- Running campaigns that actively target those who have shown an interest in your products or similar products.
- Understanding what types of influences have the greatest impact on your audience. For instance, those into outdoor sports respond well to their heroes and the stars in that sport -- from football to rock climbing -- while those into scientific endeavors respond well to new information and interesting breakthroughs. In short, know your audience and how you can connect with them specifically.
- Find out what type of interaction they value most. Humor is common for major brands, but many brands like to focus on answering questions, providing information, interacting with causes people care about -- like environmentalism, for instance -- or simply building an interested and interactive community.
Social media gives you the connection that companies have craved for generations. How can you use it to build your brand online? What advantages does it give you and how can you leverage that sense of connection for the advancement of your corporation as a whole? You have access to niche groups and marketing opportunities that never existed before, and you must know how to use social media to its full potential. It's a very competitive space, but we can help you stand out.
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