What does branding mean to you? Does it mean your logo? Your brand colors? Your fonts? Your voice/tone? Your website? Your filters?
Almost all of my clients interpret branding as the visuals, but they fail to think about the depth your branding really provides. Your branding is the story you tell. Your branding is the way people perceive you and your products/services. Your branding is the connection you're creating with your audience. It's the solutions to people's problems.
Creating your brand isn't something that's easily developed over night. Typically it takes a while to evolve, however, there are some steps you can follow to make sure you're developing your brand properly.
When it comes to social media, this is one of the first places people are going to see your brand. How many of you have discovered a new product or brand and instantly go to social media to check them out? Sadly, a lot of people instantly look at the number of followers to see how "credible" you are, but I think this is a misconception and this isn't a true indicator on the value you can provide.
To make sure you're properly branding yourself on social media, follow these simple steps:
1. Define your purpose: Why are you doing what you're doing? Why are you on social media? What problems are you solving? What solutions are you providing? When defining your purpose, think about your mission and value statement - this will help you get to the bottom of your big "why"
2. Understand your value: This is much bigger than a dollar figure (although this is very important too!). Ask yourself how much value you are providing to your clients. After your clients work with you, will they start to see an increase in their revenue? Do your solutions provide so much value that your clients can't survive without your services? After your clients are done working with you, will they say a huge shift in the way they do business??
3. Create a visual identity: People remember visuals. Although your branding is much bigger than just a pretty filter - the visuals is what gets people to recognize you. Ask yourself what look and feel your brand represents? Does your logo best represent your brand? What colors and fonts are a good expression of your products and services? If you specifically work with female entrepreneurs, having branding colors of black and blue, might not be an expression of your brand or best attract your ideal audience.
4. Define your voice/tone: Your voice and tone is the way people feel when they're reading your content. Do you want to make people laugh? Are you trying to be serious? Your voice and tone, often times, is how your audience is going to perceive your brand.
5. Establish your digital footprint: What networks will you be on? Does your audience typically go to Instagram for answers or Twitter? Depending on your ideal audience, this will be a good indicator on what platforms you should start to establish yourself.
6. Show up everyday: You can't expect to leave a lasting impression on people when they don't even know who YOU are. It's important to show up everyday and provide consistent value to your audience. Position yourself as an expert in your space so people start to come to YOU when they are having problems and need your expertise.
7. Create a community: It's important to connect with your audience and start to build meaningful relationships. Respond to every comment and DM so your audience knows there's a real person behind the brand. Ask your audience questions so they know you value their opinion and they will start to trust you! A great way to build a community on social media is by creating private groups, such as a private and exclusive FB group. In the group, you can have more intimate conversations and connections to start to build even more trust.
8. Define your culture: How you treat people and how you behave on social media is a huge expression of your brand and the way you're perceived. Creating a culture on social media that people start to recognize will go far beyond your colors and logos.
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