Building a cohesive, consistent, valuable online persona for your business
Social Media Faux Pas: NRA’s pro-gun Tweet after Aurora shooting, KitchenAid’s Tweet making light of the death of President Obama’s grandmother, or Amy’s Bakery Boutique & Bistro’s Facebook meltdown. None of these are examples from which to stem your social media voice. We all know about the epic fails companies have committed. While there are important do’s and don’ts taken from these stories, it is more important to focus on actually strategizing a consistent social media persona.
More often than not, businesses will start posting on social media without a pre-established plan of attack. Those profiles usually consist of schizophrenic posts on various topics, using multiple voices. Establishing a plan is important because to gain and maintain a healthy momentum, profiles need quality, consistency, and growth. One thing to consider in order to achieve quality and consistency, is to create a social media approach.
One way to do this is to sit down and envision your posts on social media as if they were a person; personify your posts. Who is behind your business’ Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ profile and more? Give this person a name, personality, and 3 major characteristics. You do not necessarily need to create a graphic and promote him as a mascot, but do have a one-page description of your mascot to use internally. This will help posting become more fluid. This also helps if you have multiple people posting to one account. If they all have the one-page description of what voice they should use then it creates consistency. To finish your mascot, develop a small list of rules. For example, ‘Rule #1: never abbreviate’, or ‘Rule #2: only speak conversationally’. This small set of rules can give a lot of shape to your social media personality.
Another thing to consider is a routine for your posts to provide quality content. Consider making everyday a theme; for example every Monday you post something to motivate people at the start of the week. Every post on Monday should work towards that end result. On Fridays, promote a more relaxed, TGIF tone in all your posts. If that sounds too planned, then at least decide what days and times are the best for posts when your audience is most receptive. You can do this by running analytics or insights on your platforms or using a third party, such as Hootsuite.
Lastly, include a steady growth plan to your profiles. Have a short or long term plan of how you will maintain consistency while steadily incorporating new media and other profiles. If you already have Twitter and Facebook, then consider launching a Google+ page once you have a steady flow of the other two profiles. If you always Tweet words, then consider incorporating more photos. If you are already posting photos, then consider incorporating video, and so on. Strive to grow and change.
At the very least, have a conversation about with your team. If you are a one-person show then invite someone you trust to the table to hash it out. The best campaigns and approaches are the ones that are planned and well thought out.
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