How often have you tried to look for a business connection on LinkedIn or your favorite restaurant on Facebook only to be befuddled by the graphics or cutesy cover and profile picture? If you aren't branding social media profiles and pages to match your company's overall brand strategy, then you are asking potential consumers to "guess" if they are connecting with the right social media profile. I don't know about you, but I simply hate thinking I'm connecting with my favorite local pet shop in Louisville who is featuring Auntie June and her adorable pug Jonesie on their cover photo this month only to find out it's really the Rottweiler Patrol in New York City who forgot to change their April Fools Day cover photo. Talk about brand confusion!
A brand is the personality that identifies a product, service or company and how it relates to key constituencies: customers, staff, partners, investors etc. Some people even associate a brand with thoughts, feelings, experiences or attitudes that become linked to the brand. Brand awareness is a customers' ability to recall and recognize the brand under different conditions (such as social media) and link to the brand name, logo, jingles and so on to certain associations in memory.
Proper social media branding can result in higher adoption and engagement rates that not only leading to sales, but to word of mouth advertising (aka- sharing). Bottom line: Don't miss out on opportunities to visually brand your business on social media. Here are three things you can do NOW, to help visually brand your identity on social media.
- Do the basics. Your visual vocabulary starts with a strong foundation—a solid logo and corporate identity.
- Use Photos as Brand Enhancers. Post interesting photos that tell your company story and can act as conversation starters.
- Photos are SEO (Search Engine Optimization) too. With the addition of Pinterest and other photo "bookmarking" tools, remember to use large interesting photos that will stand out in a sea of visual boards and utilize the alternative title, caption and description fields when uploading.