Taking your digital brand to social media can be intimidating. There are so many different ways for your brand to fail. However, with these tips, your brand will be #FailProof and ready to take on any challenge.
Make Your Digital Brand #FailProof
There is a lot of visibility to be had when you take your brand to the internet on social media. This can be good and bad. Make sure that your brand comes out on top with our #FailProof tips.
#FailProof: Leave Your Emotions Out
If you make a mistake on social media, it will get out and the internet will always remember it. This is why it’s so important to take a breather before posting your responses to client complaints.
Social media is first and foremost a social tool. You’ll need to treat your viewers online the same way you would in the real world. Whatever actions you take online will reflect directly on your brand.
When posting online, make sure all your posts are words your brand is prepared to stand behind. There’s no way for you to delete a mistake before the internet makes it permanent. The social web is huge and every member of it has the ability to screenshot your mistakes and broadcast them long after you’ve deleted the offending material.
Additionally, it is important to remember not to feed the trolls. A troll’s only purpose is to make you upset, so responding with out of control and upsetting remarks will only feed their fire. Try to respond as calmly as you can if you ever get trolled, and remember that sometimes it’s better not to respond at all.
#FailProof: Project the Best Image Possible
With all of the barricades between brands and consumers coming down with social media’s help, your brand is more vulnerable than ever. Your brand’s image isn’t completely within your own control anymore. Members of the internet can express their opinions of you for the world to see, and you will have to be prepared for the consequences.
When trying to project the best image possible, you’ll need to stay away from any underhanded tactics because your viewers will not respond positively to you on social media.
Negative feedback will happen sometimes, whether you like it or not. Trying to cover this up by deleting negative comments will only make your angry commenters more upset and make your brand look bad.
Every brand should have a moderation policy in place that will clearly spell out what is allowed in your community and what is not. This will give you the freedom to remove inappropriate comments without bad brand backlash.
#FailProof: Be Careful Not to Rush
Never rush to posting anything, whether it be tweets, direct messages, or Facebook posts. This is true whether you’re using a social media management tool or are posting directly on the social media platforms. Always make sure you are posting where you want to and as the account you want the post to be recognized as. Make sure you know whether you’re posting a public tweet or a private message.
Taking the time to confirm you’ve selected the right account before you post to avoid any unnecessary embarrassment. Having two different management tools for your personal and private accounts will reduce the chance of mixing the two up.
There is no guaranteed way to prevent all human error, but taking your time when posting will get you pretty close.
#FailProof: Avoid Shortcuts
‘Piggybacking’ has been a new way for brands to jump on the success of an existing trend’s Twitter hashtags. Unfortunately, without adequate research, this lazy marketing can do massive damage.
Not knowing what the hashtag you’re using is trending for can set your brand up for embarrassment and consumer backlash. Sometimes this can be as major as using a hashtag associated with a tragedy, which can really turn off your audience. This is why it’s so important to do your research before you try to piggyback on any trending phrase. Learn what the conversation is about and then consider using it for your brand.
Always take the time to consider the impact of what you’re doing. Will your content contribute to the trending hashtag in a relevant way? Meaningful hashtags should not be abused, and you should remember that trending hashtags are being used for breaking news and specific, sensitive topics. Only use the hashtag for your brand if you have something to add to the conversation.
If you decide to try creating your own hashtag, you will still need to do research before implementing them. Just because it isn’t trending doesn’t mean it hasn’t already been used. Make sure that the material it has been used with is related to topics you want to be associated with.
#FailProof: Be Sensitive
Humorous and edgy material has given some people success on social media, but its also a quick way to cause major offense to your viewers. When posting material that rides the line, you need to remember to act human and not say anything online that you wouldn’t say in person.
Jokes that involve rape, abuse, religion, politics, and race should stay firmly off-limits. These hot-button issues are more likely to push you over the line than to get a laugh out of your followers.
The same can be said of using natural disasters to advertise. Current events can be a great way to find inspiration, but this form of ‘newsjacking’, when done in poor taste, can be very damaging to your brand’s reputation.
If you attempt to newsjack, you need to keep it relevant, genuine, and a real addition to the conversation. If your post doesn’t meet all three of these criteria, it’s best to abandon it. Remember to never use a tragic even as a way to plug your brand without providing to the conversation. These posts are never as harmless as they seem.
#FailProof: Don’t Beg for Attention
Your social media presence should not be a separate entity from your physical brand. Your voice and your strategy should match over every venue you take your brand to.
The material that you post online should always be relevant to your brand. This may mean avoiding popular trends. If your brand has nothing to do with ice cream, you probably shouldn’t hashtag about national ice cream day. It will just leave your followers confused and make you look like you’re begging for attention.
When you created your digital brand’s social media pages, it was to talk directly to the people who were interested in your brand. With this in mind, you should then be creating content that appeals directly to this audience. Your audience will still be interested in you if you don’t post funny memes and stick to relevant information.
#FailProof: Don’t Guilt People for Shares
If you’re emotionally manipulating your followers into liking or sharing a post, you will not gain any meaningful engagement. Your followers will share your content if you’re posting interesting content that is the right fit for your brand. The right followers will be the ones sharing your content, and this means that it’s more likely to reach your intended audience.
Additionally, you shouldn’t post content that forces engagement for a seemingly nice cause. Stating that you will donate a certain amount to a relevant cause based on the number of likes you get will make you look sleazy instead of charitable.
Don’t rely on empty likes to push your content and don’t force engagement with charitable causes.
#FailProof: Monitor Your Digital Brand
Your social media presence can be incredibly valuable, and detrimental, to your brand’s image and reputation. To make sure that it stays more valuable than damaging, you’ll want to have the right people in charge of your brand’s social activities.
This means that you may not want to trust an intern with your brand’s social accounts. But who should manage them then? Your marketing director? The CEO? The job title or the age of the person really doesn’t matter when choosing who should be in charge. What matters is that its someone you trust. You’re not only trusting them with your social accounts, you’re really trusting them with your brand itself.
When it comes to your brand image, your social media presence is an extremely vital part of the way your followers see your brand. Make sure that someone you trust is monitoring your social media accounts for you.
There are many things to keep in mind when you take your brand to social media, and unfortunately many ways to make a mistake when you post content. Just take a deep breath, relax and take your time. Never post when you’re angry with a negative review, and never jump on a Twitter trend you haven’t researched. Being positive and true to your brand will go a lot farther than some off-topic joke. Avoiding these classic mistakes will go a long way towards making your brand #FailProof.
What are some social media mistakes you’ve noticed?