Friday, July 20, 2012

How to find your company's social media voice

Establishing a company's social media presence sounds straightforward: just sign up for some accounts on social media sites and start posting. When faced with the task of actually posting, however, many new social media managers are stonewalled by questions they didn't consider.
They now have a microphone, but what do they say? And how do they say it? There is no one correct answer to this, as every company's social media voice will be different, depending on their needs. Here are some factors to consider when finding the social media voice that's right for your company.

Understand your company's personality

A company's social media presence should serve as the voice that represents the company. It's important that a company's social media voice fit in line with any perceptions or current voice already established through other channels, such as web or marketing content. For example, a company whose past and current copy reflected a serious, reserved and highly professional voice wouldn't want to create a disconnect by establishing a social media personality that relies on use of slang, sarcasm, and edgy humor.

Know your audience

In your personal life, you wouldn't speak to your spouse the same way that you would a potential customer. Different language, tones and personalities are appropriate for different audiences, and this is still very much the case in social media. Whether your target audience is c-level executives of large corporations, stay-at-home moms, college students or entrepreneurs, your social media voice needs to be tailored so that it is appropriate to the audience you're trying to reach. The right voice will engage your target audience, while the wrong one could possibly alienate them.

Determine your goals

Are you trying to drive traffic directly back to your website? Do you want to establish your position as an industry expert? Is your goal to create a social and intimate connection with followers to foster trust and loyalty? When determining the voice of your company's social media, these goals need to be kept in mind.

Stick with success

When initially establishing yourself on social media, particularly for younger companies, what seems at first like the perfect social media voice may turn out to be the wrong choice for you. Perhaps your goals shifted, or you misjudged your audience. Because of this, it's important to track follower sentiment, response and engagement to your attempts. If something you try isn't working, be willing to deviate from your original plan and try something new. When you find what works for you, stay with it.

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