November 04, 2015
/ by Maria Materise
When you think about big brands like Coca-Cola, McDonald’s or Walmart, your mind conjures up specific images and feelings. These associations aren’t by accident. These brands work hard to give off just the right impression to their audiences.
Whether a Fortune 500 company or mom-and-pop shop, you want to be in control of that impression. Don’t leave anything to chance, or else you’ll risk losing your reputation. So what do you need to do to build your brand’s identity from the ground up?
Cision’s social media manager, Shirien Elamawy, recently sat down with Jeff Barrett, co-founder of Status Creative and one of Forbes’ Top 50 Social Media Influencers, to discuss personal branding and best practices for social and PR strategy.
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Building your brand starts on social. Take a look at the following video to see how you can use social to drive your PR strategy:
Social media gives you the freedom to try different things and see what works. Jeff says social is the catalyst that can drive conventional PR. Posting is free, so you don’t have to worry about spending lots of money on a piece of content that might not perform well. Start small and focus just on your social media accounts. See which of your posts get positive results and consider creating a larger piece of content, such as a blog post, video or white paper, based on the topic.
On social, you also have direct access to your audience. Jeff explains that unlike the PR of past generations, today everything is a two-way conversation. Listen to what your audience has to say. Constructive criticism could point you in the right direction toward strengthening your identity.
The next step is to inject personality into your brand. See what Jeff has to say about adding a personal touch to your social media content:
“Personal branding is mostly about creating a unique voice,” says Jeff.
Before you begin posting anything, think about what makes the most sense for your brand. Your voice should always sound comfortable and natural, and you always want to make sure everything you post fits that voice.
For Jeff, incorporating humor is an easy way to show off his personality. He says he is naturally “goofy” so using jokes to share his story works for him.
Humor won’t work for every brand, but it’s important to try different things and see what helps your brand engage with its audience. As long as you focus on being authentic, your voice will shine through and your audience will gravitate toward your brand.
Image: CPOA (Creative Commons)
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