Communicating on-brand is an integral part of any successful marketing strategy, be it offline or online. Whether you are a small or medium-sized business or a large, multinational corporation, successful brand communication can be the key factor that lifts your campaigns to the next level. But what exactly do marketing experts mean when they speak of communicating "on-brand"?
A brand gives your company its own identity and, if done correctly, also shapes your customers identities in relation to your brand and company.
Not every company automatically is also a brand. A brand is that individual aspect of your company that differentiates you from everyone else and that communicates to your various stakeholders what your company is about and what they can expect from you. A brand gives your company its own identity and, if done correctly, also shapes your customers identities in relation to your brand and company. Mac users "think differently" and inevitably tie up part of their own identity in the fact they are using that specific computer. Children know they are in for a treat when they see the big golden M of McDonalds after a long car ride with their parents.
Broadly speaking, you create such a brand for your company through consistency. Through repetition, you create a certain narrative around your business and your products and engage your customers to partake in that narrative. If we look at it more closely and specifically through the lens of social media content marketing, we can see that there are a number of different factors that play into creating and maintaining such a brand narrative:
1. The Tone
The tone of your content and messaging makes up for a huge part of your business's identity towards your followers and potential customers. The way in which your content addresses your audience, both through way you select content templates and the way you draft your messaging, informs users about what to expect from your brand online. Will your company present itself as a no-nonsense expert in your field, on which customers know they can rely and in which they can trust to always have the highest quality products for their needs? Or will your company be the fun brand that comes across as relatable to their customers and also isn’t afraid to poke fun at themselves every once in a while to garner the undivided loyalty of their fans? Of course, that is not to say that your company can't also be serious and fun, reliable and relatable. Its all in the right mix of messaging and tone. But whatever way you want to take for your brand online image, make sure to stay overall consistent in your tone. Only that way will your audience start to grasp the true identity of your brand and in turn start to identify with it themselves.
2. The Visual
The second key component of a successful brand narrative online is visual consistency. This is the aspect, which most companies are already most familiar with from their offline marketing. Most businesses already have their own logo and corporate design, now it is just about successfully transferring this corporate design to your social media content in a consistent and efficient manner. Having each of your online content pieces have their distinctly recognizable look makes online audiences immediately recognize your posts in the content flood that is social media. That way, even when your content gets shared and doesn’t appear on your own company channel anymore, people will still promptly know it to be yours. Unfortunately, creating regular and consistent online content with a great and recognizable visual look often takes a lot of time or money for expert designers. Luckily, here is where Mare Studio can help your company a ton. With Mate you'll have access to a great variety of expertly designed content templates and customizing them with your own corporate logo and design is as easy as clicking a button. With Mate you won't have to worry about design anymore and can instead focus your energy on the next point on our list.
3. The Audience Bond
The last, but certainly not least important, aspect of successfully communicating on brand online is to form a two-way bond with the audience for your content. Having users be engaged with your content in a meaningful way will create a trusting relationship with your audience and ultimately consumers always buy from whom they know and trust. Creating such a mutual bond is the key to converting loyal customers over the long run. Both tone and visual both play heavily into this bond but on their own are not quite enough. Your content should be created to engage your audience to interact with it in as many ways as possible. Using calls-to-action, framing your messaging as a dialogue or posting interactive content such as polls and quizzes can all be useful tools in this regard. Finally, listening to your audience and using comments to reply to what they say is essential to driving home your brand identity with your followers.
The journey from a company to a brand is not always easy and usually requires long lasting effort and commitment.
The journey from a company to a brand is not always easy and usually requires long lasting effort and commitment. But ultimately, creating a consistent brand narrative and communicating "on-brand" is one of the most powerful marketing steps you can take for your company to be successful online. With Mate, some of that effort can be minimized. We help your company to find the right tone and visuals for your content online and turn the regular creation of such content from chore to play. Mate offers customized solutions for businesses of any size to help exactly where it is needed. Simply contact us and schedule a demo call with us to find out how we can help your business, too.