In an age of “authentic” marketing, it can be easy to see where brands might accidentally blur the lines between business and personal – especially if you’re a smaller business with a smaller team. When it comes to social media, because it’s supposed to be social and you are interacting with other humans, a personal touch is nice – but you have to remember you are still interacting as your brand and not you. You need to stick to your brand voice and your brand personality.
Here are four ways that you might be getting too personal with your business social media and why it might not work in your favour.
#1: Your brand is on a particular social media platform because you like it, not because your audience does
When you launch your business – and all of the decisions leading up to that moment – everything has to be about your customer. Your business can’t thrive if it doesn’t have customers. All of your marketing choices should be made based on your audience behaviour. If you are too focused on doing things just because you want to rather than listening to what they want, then you are likely missing the mark. If you have selected your social media platforms because you personally like them but you haven’t taken into account where your audience likes to hang out on social media, then you might be finding it hard to connect with them.
Perhaps you know how to use one specific social media platform but not the one you should actually be on. In that case, make sure you educate yourself or hire someone to do it for you!
#2: Every other photo on your brand account is of you, your friends, your baby, or your dog
It’s great to show the human side behind your brand, but if the majority of our content is TOO personal, then your audience won’t really get to know your brand. They will only get to know you as a person. People want to hear about your brand and what you have to offer, not what you did with your family on the weekend. You can absolutely do some behind the scenes shots of the day-to-day of your business, but make sure they are carefully curated and inserted into your content strategy.
#3: You use your business accounts to regularly post political rants
We live in a very politically charged climate. Politics are one of those things that is extremely polarizing, and this can have a negative effect on your brand if you are too focused on your political views and not enough on your business and what you have to offer. Its ok to take a stand for something, but it’s not ok to position your brand as that crazy person no one wants to be locked in a room with.
#4: Not everyone will think you’re funny
It’s great to have a sense of humour as a brand, but it’s not great to use it when it alienates your audience. Make sure that before you launch into your next joke you won’t be offending the people who would buy from you. If you’re the only one laughing, it’s going to make it tough to successfully reach your potential customers.
While you should have fun with your business social media – and be social – you also need to make sure that you aren’t crossing the line and becoming too personal with your strategy. You need to step back every-so-often and remind yourself that your business social media strategy is there to help you market your business.
Candace Huntly is Founding Partner at SongBird Marketing Communications, an award-winning agency working to take organizational and individual brands to the next level. With a passion for all things related to creativity and strategy, she specializes in business intelligence, marketing & branding, content strategy & development, media & influencer relations, and social media. Basically, if you need to put your brand, product, or cause in the public eye, she will find a way to do it, while making the approach unique to you.
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A version of this article was originally posted to the SongBird Marketing Communications blog.