“Social media is not just an activity; it is an investment of valuable time and resources. Surround yourself with people who not just support you and stay with you, but inform your thinking about ways to WOW your online presence” – Sean Gardner (@2morrowknight)
Most brands either big or small would say they want to be popular and many of them would see social media as a way to achieve that. But recently David McInnis wrote this in a comment: “You can have all the social pieces in place but doing so does not make you likeable. Most companies that have a social strategy should not. They should focus instead on being likeable first.”
In other words, social media alone won’t improve your affinity as a brand. A great observation. Tempting isn’t it? to roll out the social artillery without first thinking about whether
a) anyone gets on with you
b) wants to socialize with you and
c) will bother to give you the time of day even if you do make the effort.
Today most content marketing is nothing more than disguised brand advertising–and customers and consumers mostly ignore it. To gain a massive following in social channels requires a sophisticated understanding and disciplined application of Brand Voice using the right social media strategy which communicates its purpose, values, reputation and experiences must be created and managed with precision.
So, what makes a brand likable and marketable? Think of a brand as if it were a person. And then think about what makes people likable. Here is my list of attributes that make people likable:
- Friendliness: communicate liking and openness to others
- Relevance: connect with others’ interests, wants, and needs
- Empathy: recognize, acknowledge, and experience other people’s feelings
- Realness: guarantees its authenticity
Take a careful review of this list and decide what you need to do to increase the likability of your brand. Much of this will result from the appropriate corporate culture, customer service training and procedures and employee selection and performance appraisal criteria. Some of it will result from outstanding and consistent product performance. Advertising campaigns and other marketing messaging can significantly reinforce and build upon your brand’s likability. And don’t forget that choosing the right advertising agency to help with your social media strategy and campaign will definitely do a lot of good for your social status online.