Branding in Social Media Marketing

Instructor: Beth Loy

Dr. Loy has a Ph.D. in Resource Economics; master's degrees in economics, human resources, and safety; and has taught masters and doctorate level courses in statistics, research methods, economics, and management.

This lesson discusses what branding is, why it is important, and how businesses can use social media for branding. We review where companies should focus key resources when using social media and look at some tips on how to maintain these focal points.

What Is Branding?

A brand is a name, symbol, logo, mix of colors, tagline, or a combination of these that signifies a specific company, its products, and its services. Think of your favorite sports team, cereal, or car. Does any particular logo, mascot or tagline immediately come to mind? If so, these things have been well branded. Which is a good thing, as customers identify with brands and will pay higher prices to own certain brands.

If a brand signifies quality and style it builds the foundation to market an entire line of products and services, and profits will follow. Creating a unique brand is essential to the success of a company, and social media channels are a huge part of this.

How Can Businesses Use Social Media For Branding?

In marketing it's pivotal that customers have immediate access to companies. Social media gives us a 24-hour way to communicate, market products, create relationships, and expand opportunities. Social media channels help us engage customers as if we are face-to-face. Given that we always have scarce resources, we want to be sure we market our brand efficiently.

You want to be strategic when using social networks as marketing tools. Your focus should always be on your mission and how to expand your brand. Moving forward too quickly will waste resources. Let's look at seven impact strategies for where a company should focus its resources when building a brand using social media marketing.

Seven Impact Strategies

1. Set up a professional looking business account that coincides with your style.

  • For example, use colors, language, backgrounds, profiles, and other visuals that blend with your brand. Choose names that also go with your brand so customers will immediately recognize your business. If your company name is Mountain Tires, you may want to name your account No1MtnTires.

2. Choose a social media channel that meets your objective.

  • For example, when using social networks to market your business, it's important to consider how to use each channel in the most effective way. Google+ is a social network that is linked to other Google services, like its searcher. If you are looking to improve your Google search rankings, you may want to leverage as many of your company's resources as possible to become very active on Google+. Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest have slightly different features to offer. Determine your objective and budget resources, and focus on being positive and engaging with others.

3. Become a more transparent company though social media.

  • For example, consider engaging those involved with your business, including customers, board members, partners, suppliers, and even your CEO. Share the work you do with the local community. You can even partner with charities, hospitals, senior centers, and animal rescues. Express these alliances on your social media channels, and share how others can become involved.

4. Show professionalism by taking disapproval and creating a plus, answering questions promptly, and highlighting your most recent followers.

  • For example, for any company to build its brand, there must be a focus on customer service. Social media channels give us a wonderful opportunity to be responsive, friendly, unique, and authentic. When you respond to a complaint, be positive and let others know you will make things right. Offer a refund and a coupon as a solution.

5. Use visual, personable content to give people what they think they want.

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