Social Media Branding Strategy: 4 Essentials For Marketing Success

Social media branding strategy from the scratch to connect your brand with the right audience more easily.

To be successful in social media marketing, your brand needs more than just followers and content.

It needs a social media strategy.

A strategy  to guide you to choose the right channels, to create relevant content, set and measure goals that matter.

But at the heart of a social media strategy, is the branding strategy, which helps in making your brand instantly likeable to your prospects and customers.

When your target audience cross path with your brand on social channels, a well planned and executed brand strategy gets you their personal gut reactions such as “I have a good feeling about this company”.

That admiration for your brand comes from the “connect” that happens between them and your brand’s unique values. That connection doesn’t come magically on its own. Well, you have to do something right to achieve it. And that something is a thoughtful social media branding strategy.

In this post, I’ll walk you through four key elements of social media branding strategy that are essential for the marketing success.

The Key Elements Of Social Media Branding Strategy

1. Understand Your Target Audience

Target audience is at the core of the branding strategy.

Identifying the target audience is the foundation of all elements of social media marketing strategy, from deciding which channels to invest in right through to the look and feel of the social content.

The thing is, there are more than 3 billion people are on social media around the globe (BrizFel 2018). You don’t have to talk to everybody and certainly not with vague and generic messages. Because then, you’re not resonating with anybody.

When you don’t have a clear view of who your target audience is, it’s likely that you would:

  • accumulate the wrong type of followers
  • spend your social media budgets targeting people who may never be interested in your offerings
  • struggle to decide what type of content to create and using which tone
  • find it difficult to create a connect with your audience
  • not know which social media channels to invest in
  • not know what type of brand personality to create

How to understand your social media target audience?

For starters, try to find out who they are and what type of content they’re interested in.

Now, they may be interested in a lot of things, but the objective here is to find out their content needs with respect to the solutions you provide. In other words, find out what they’re interested in that you can provide.

Don’t stop there.

Dig deeper why they need that content.

Remember, your brand is on social media for connecting with people in your market segment. So everything is about their needs, their problems and aspirations. You have to find out where your brand fits in their life and not vice versa.

Your audience is not interested in your great company and your super offerings. They’re interested in knowing how you can make their life better. And that should form the basis of your social media content strategy.

Also, find out where they usually hang out on social media and what type of content do they consume.

Now, once you identify your social media target audience, what will you tell them about your brand?  How do you want them to think about your brand offerings?

That brings us to our next point i.e. Brand Messaging.

2.  Prepare Your Brand Messaging

Now we’re moving on from WHO you want to target to WHAT you will tell them when they cross paths with your brand on social media.

But isn’t messaging and communication a part of the social media campaign planning, you might think. After all, here we are talking about the social media strategy, not execution.

Let me clarify this first.

A brand’s value proposition and positioning collectively describe the functional and emotional benefits of their brands and state why customers should use their service/ product over others. Brand Messaging is a set of specific statements crafted to establish and reinforce this brand positioning.

To make your audience think about your offerings in a particular way, they have to be presented with a well-thought through, quality or consistent message from your brand.

And for that, irrespective of whether your social media marketing is managed in-house or is outsourced to a social media marketing agency, the brand messaging inputs should be provided by the company to the team. It must act as a reference for them to plan social media communication.

Basically, without planned brand messaging, 

  • social media team is likely to use mismatched messaging.
  • you may end up creating a fragmented customer experience.
  • buyers may not see your brand the way you want it to be seen.

How to create brand messaging?

Look at your brand from different angles – Internal, Customer and Competitive and prepare the following messaging framework:

  • Brand Promise
  • Brand Positioning Statement
  • Mission Statement
  • Elevator Pitch
  • Brand Pillars
  • Headline Benefits and Supporting Examples

3. Choose your brand aesthetic

Visual social media branding helps in defining what your content will look like. Visual elements of your social media design work together to create an impression, a sense of your brand’s personality, to visually define your brand.

You can say that it helps in defining a consistent look and feel of the brand on social media.

But why do we have to care about consistency?

That’s because you don’t want different people working on your brand to visually present your brand in different ways. When your brand followers see your content in their busy social feed, you want them to start recognising when a post is from you- without looking at the logo or account name.

What it also means is that when they visit your page, they expect to see a theme of your brand, the feel and philosophy of your company.

But here’s the thing. A coherent visual style on social media doesn’t happen by chance.

Well, it takes an effort and planning to keep everyone in the team on the same page when it comes to visually presenting your brand.

When a brand is not visually consistent,

  • inconsistency can confuse and alienate your customers or existing fans.
  • with new followers, you’ll not be able to build recognition when they scroll their feed
  • your audience will not be quickly able to differentiate you from your competition

How to implement a visual strategy for brand on social media?

Your visual strategy depends on your brand’s positioning strategy.

What it means is that visual branding is guided by the audience who you’re trying to attract on social media and the unique values of your brand.

Based on that, start by preparing your social media style guide, which includes guidelines for following:

About the brand:

  • Positioning
  • Personality
  • Values
  • Idea
  • Audience profile
  • Brand essence

Visual Guidelines:

  • Image guideline
  • Relevant tag lines
  • Color palette
  • Acceptable ways to use your brand logo, including its size & placement
  • Font styles & typefaces to use

4. Establish your brand’s voice on social media

Yes, your brand needs a voice of its own.

In real life, each person’s voice is unique. Similarly, on social media your brand also needs a distinct voice to stand out from its competition, to bring out the personality of its own.

As all marketers know, to connect with your social audience, you need to talk in a way that resonates with them.

The copywriting part of the brand messaging is the key factor which determines the voice and tone of your brand. Your brand’s language, vocabulary and the tone influences how you make your audience feel and, in turn, how they perceive your brand message. In short, your brand message needs the right vibe to connect well with the audience you’re targeting.

And once you find your brand’s voice on social media, you’ve to keep it consistent.

Why so?

Because inconsistent and indistinct brand voice could lead to:

  • discomfort and distrust amongst audience triggered by dramatic changes in voice.
  • inability to express the business’s identity on social media.
  • challenge in differentiating your brand from competitors.
  • failure to influence and persuade audience.

How to find the brand’s voice?

A great place to start is by asking questions like:

  • Who’s your target audience and what brand value you have to communicate.
  • If your brand was a human, how would it sound and what kind of personality would it have?
  • Which adjectives describe your brand’s vibe and tone. Also describe in adjectives what your brand personality is not.
  • Develop voice guide that your social media team can refer to while creating posts, ads, etc.

To summarise,

The essentials of social media branding strategy are:

  • Understanding your target audience on social media
  • Preparing the brand messaging framework 
  • Defining your brand’s personality by choosing the aesthetics and establishing the brand voice.

Social media brand guidelines help in enforcing consistency in your branding, graphic design, copywriting and marketing- keeping everything together. It helps content creators communicate a consistent message to the social media audience and establishing the desired brand identity.

To make your social media marketing successful, contact OH! Design Studio.

For more information contact:

OH! Design Studio

About OH! Design Studio

OH! Design Studio is a creative branding company which offers strategic design and digital marketing services. 

From brand strategy to brand positioning, identity, brand guidelines and brand design, OH! Design Studio offers end to end branding services. OH! nurture brands to help them realise their full potential in every medium, at every touch-point. 

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