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Using Social Media to Humanize the Company

Instructor: Beth Hendricks

Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

Executives have the power to bring out the human side of their businesses. In this lesson, you'll learn more about the importance of humanizing your brand, on social media, and some ways to go about it.

Funny Fast Food

When you've created something with your Twitter account that has journalists and reporters writing stories about you, you've either done something great ... or something really awful.

In this case, the verdict is ''great'' and the Twitter account in question is Wendy's. You may not think of Wendy's beyond burgers and Frostys, but its social media presence over the past few years has turned into something special.

Consider this example: The people behind the corporate Twitter account responded to one recent follower's request to help them find a McDonald's, by posting a picture of a garbage can. Recently, they took a jab at McDonald's again during a broadcasting mix-up during the Super Bowl, that caused TV viewers to get several minutes of dead air, instead of a commercial. Wendy's seized the opportunity by asking McDonald's: ''Y'all freeze the live feed?'' a dig that continues Wendy's ongoing fresh versus frozen beef debate.

If you do a Google search for ''Wendy's Twitter'' alone, you'll find more than four million links talking about the cleverness, and humor, behind the fast food restaurant's social media account. Why? Because the unorthodox approach to social media is both authentic and human.

Humanizing Social Media

Social media was created to help people connect and interact with other people. It wasn't long, of course, before businesses caught on, and hijacked social media to talk about their brands, sales, products and more. Perhaps not unsurprisingly, these accounts became stale and too sales-y. And, a public that was already skeptical, and distrusting of brands, found themselves bombarded by messages that were boring and off-putting.

There's good news, however, in the form of business executives who figured out the formula for social media success: humanizing their brand. Humanizing a brand by giving it a more of a human element. It creates engagement and makes a company appear more relatable and trustworthy. And, best yet, humanizing a brand makes it more attractive to customers, who are looking for brands they can develop an emotional connection with.

Let's take a look at some strategies that executives can use to help them become more human, on social media, and some examples of brands already winning in this arena.

Humanizing Social Media

Want to build a more attractive presentation, for your brand on social media, by humanizing it? Luckily, it is not that difficult, and a few examples of brands below will show you how it's done.

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