In our previous blog post, we discussed how to put your brand into action online, including how to ensure that your brand elements and voice are properly integrated into your website and social media accounts. Understanding your brand and how it should be represented online is important, but it is also important to understand how each online platform is different, including the strengths and weaknesses of a website, a Facebook Page and a Twitter account.
Your Website: You Have Complete Control!
Your website is the most important online asset you have, and it should be the centerpiece of your online presence. By utilizing a strong and versatile Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress, you have complete control over the design and functionality of your website. This control allows you to implement features that are unavailable on other platforms such as Facebook, including calls to action and SEO. Calls to action direct your visitors to complete a specific action or direct their attention to certain sections or pages of your website, while SEO tools help search engines more easily and accurately index your content, which leads to higher search rankings and more visitors. By having complete control of every element of your website, there is no reason why you shouldn’t completely implement your branding elements and voice throughout! Be sure that your logo and typography are featured prominently on every page, your tagline is included, and your color scheme is fully integrated into your website’s theme. Since you are not forced to work around the default interface and design of a social media service such as Facebook, be sure that your branding shines through!
Facebook and Twitter: Content, Interactions and Funneling
Facebook is the most popular social media service in the United States by a large margin, and Twitter is also very popular as well. These two services are the social media “default” – every business that wants to leverage the power of social media should have both a Facebook Page and a Twitter account. However, a Facebook Page should never be a substitute for a website. Even though a business can provide a lot of information to their customers and volunteers through Facebook, it falls short when compared to the functionality and versatility of a good website and restricts your ability to leverage your digital brand. Neither Facebook nor Twitter allows landing pages and SEO optimization, which are vital to converting social media users to clients, customers, subscribers or donors. While it is important to inform and entertain social media users through great content marketing, your ultimate goal is to “funnel” these users back to your website, where the tools mentioned above can be used to increase your conversion rates. When creating content for social media updates, keep this ultimate goal in mind – you’ll want to capture users’ attention, provide a bit of useful or entertaining content and then direct them back to your website or blog. Every social media update doesn’t have to include a link back, so don’t insert them into social media posts if you post more than once a day or when it’s not appropriate.
Posting To Social Media
Your brand can really shine through content marketing featuring posts, images and videos on your Timeline and through comment interactions with other Facebook users. Facebook doesn’t restrict the length of the vast majority of posts, which means you can include in-depth excerpts of your blog posts featuring your brand voice, along with a featured image and headline. Twitter is unique in that posts are restricted to 140 characters in length, including URLs and links to images and videos. The strength of Twitter lies in the manner by which you communicate your brand voice through posts and interactions with other users with short, catchy updates.
Sharing And Retweeting
Finally, and possibly most importantly for business owners and managers who find it difficult to create original content, you should use the Facebook Share and Twitter retweet options to share appropriate and professional content you find interesting with your followers, which is one of social media’s greatest strengths – the ability to legally and legitimately share third-party content to strengthen your own brand voice and drive conversion rates. Be sure to share content you know they will also find entertaining, interesting, informative and enlightening, and make sure that the content you share follows your own brand voice as closely as possible, because updates that may be appropriate for one brand may not be appropriate for another.