As the chief strategist of an mHealth brand marketing firm, I am often asked if I “do social media.” To me, that’s almost like asking, “Do you do in-person meetings?” Social media covers so many channels these days, it would be difficult to run an organization without participating in some form of social media. Having strategized social media plans and campaigns for clients for many years, I have some insight about how companies can create a cohesive branding campaign across all platforms through the use of one clear “voice.”
The rule is this: your company “persona” or personality should be utilized across all channels. This is where many businesses falter, because even though the business (and probably the clients as well) might be conservative … companies make the mistake of thinking a silly or brash Facebook or blogging voice will make them seem more “fun.”
Here are some things to think about when planning your brand’s social media strategy I’ve condensed from an article by public relations professional Mickie Kennedy:
mHealth Social Media Voice= mHealth Brand?
Whether you realize it or not, your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media profiles all play a key role in your branding efforts. Unfortunately, too many companies have a social media voice that doesn’t fit with their brand.
Here’s an example. Recently, 7-Eleven posted a Facebook update (they’ve since deleted it) that was seemingly poking fun at mentally ill people. Obviously, the person who made this update on behalf of 7-Eleven didn’t understand that this type of humor didn’t fit with the brand’s voice. It was a clear example of the company’s social media voice not matching the brand.
There’s nothing wrong with showing some personality with your social networking. It’s a good thing, but it also has to make sense within the structure of your brand. If you’ve created a brand that’s seen as serious and thoughtful and you have a silly, funny social media voice, it just won’t ring true with your customers. It will confuse them and undermine your branding efforts.
How can you make sure your social media marketing meshes with the rest of your branding efforts?
It all comes down to training the person who is managing your social media accounts on the voice of your brand. That person needs to understand what your brand is about, what kind of image you’re trying to create, who your target audience is, and how you want them to interact with and perceive your brand.
I’m not saying you need to run every Tweet and status update through a committee for approval, but you do need to remember that everything you post influences how others see your brand. Consistency is the key to building brands customers trust and connect with. Maintain that consistency in everything you do.
I agree with Mickie’s thoughts on maintaining a cohesive and consistent “brand” throughout your marketing and social efforts. Especially in the mHealth industry, where maintaining your client’s trust is paramount.