6 Tips for Personalizing Your Brand
For some, social media and online activity in general can be a tad too invasive. For others, it's a way to share who they are without getting too personal. But for businesses, it's important for your audience to feel a connection. Here's 6 tips for connecting to your audience:
1. Stop talking in third person. This is something that even I did when I first started S. Mitchell Marketing and something that I fall in and out of today. It’s easy to fall into the trap of talking as a “business” instead of a person when you’re first starting out. After all, few solopreneurs want to come off as a freelancer when they are a CEO. The problem with that is, your followers can see through it and it just comes off as…. weird, for lack of a better word. Even when you start to build your team, try personalizing your social media posts to be more “I” focused instead of “we” focused unless you really are speaking for the team or sharing a best practices tip that the whole team incorporates. If I’m writing the post, I don’t need to imply that someone else is writing it. If one of my team members writes it, that’s different. Buffer does an awesome job of this. When you receive a tweet from one of their team members, they’ll include their name so you know who it came from.
2. Use personal email handles. This is actually one of my favorite email hacks for increasing open rates. When sending out email campaigns, instead of using a generic email@example.com, try using firstname.lastname@example.org instead! Not only does this help increase your open rate but it lets your subscribers know that if they have a reply or a question that they will reach a real person. Connecting with your subscribers is key because once they feel like they’re just being sold to, they’re quicker to unsubscribe. If you provide a real connection, they feel valued.
3. Share “behind the scenes” moments on social media. In a world of carefully curated Instagram feeds, DSLR cameras, and personal brands, so many social media accounts lack authenticity and relatability. Showing behind the scenes element to your day or brand's inner workings provides a real and genuine connection between you and your audience. You don't have to wait for the perfect picture to post if it's content that you think your audience will love. Imperfection and realness trumps perfection. When your business hires a new team member, you’re working on an exciting project, you want to share a brand-related tip, or you just had a funny day at the office, don’t hesitate to share this on social media. One of my favorite ways to do this is through Instagram stories but you can post this type of content pretty much anywhere unless you have a very carefully, crafted aesthetic on your feed that you’d like to keep.
4. Take your brand voice from robotic to relatable. Not every brand voice is the same. Your brand voice is your brand’s own unique tone, verbiage, and diction but just because you may be a part of a more serious industry like tech or medical doesn’t mean that your brand voice has to be so stoic. Try lightening up your content- crack an industry-related joke or celebrate a “national” holiday that’s related to your brand (there’s literally a national holiday for any and every industry). The point is, people like and share content that is informational, relatable, and entertaining. Make sure that your content isn’t just something you think you should be sharing, but something that your audience would like to share, too.
5. Engage with your followers. One of the biggest brand killers is ignoring your online audience. Everyday throughout the day, you or someone on your team should spend time responding to comments and questions. Go the extra mile, and see what your followers are posting. If it’s interesting to your audience or relevant to your brand, share it, repost it, or retweet it. Another important part of engagement is responding to reviews- both positive and negative (we’ll be blogging about how to handle negative reviews about your brand in a later blog post).
6. Don’t rely solely on automated platforms. Buffer (no, we are not sponsored by them lol) and SproutSocial are awesome tools for making sure that you have consistent, scheduled content but the worst thing you can do for your social media presence is only share links to articles without any organic posts or audience engagement. Make sure that your content is a mix of informative articles and off-the-cuff posts, that can range from what’s happening in your industry that day, a question to your audience, or one of those “behind-the-scenes” posts that we referenced earlier.
Those are our top tips for personalizing your brand. What are some ways that you connect with your followers? Let us know in the comments!