Optimize Your Branded Social Media Profiles In 5 Steps
Having a social media presence with a branded social media profile is a necessity for your brand. It’s an affordable and accessible way to share content that connects with your target audience, helping you generate brand awareness and engagement.
But social media profiles aren’t something that you can just set up and forget about. You need to make sure that your profiles are set up to help your audience find you easily. And your content strategy needs to evolve over time to remain in line with your audience’s preferences. So, have you ever thought about how to optimize your social media profiles? It’s actually a simpler process than you might think.
1) Get Your Name Right
In other words optimize your username. This involves picking the best username you can for your account. And using it across all your social media profiles. Your account username becomes a part of the URL of your account. So when you pick a username, make sure it is related to your brand name. The most obvious choice might seem to be your brand name. But there can be restrictions that make your brand name unacceptable as a username (e.g. if it has more than a certain number of characters). A good rule of thumb is to choose a combination of alphanumeric characters and/or an underscore, and keep it to less than 15 characters.
So, you’ve got all this in mind and come up with the perfect username. But you head over to set up your profiles and find that your username is already taken? Don’t be too surprised – with over 3.8 Billion active social media users the chances are up there. But no worries, we’ve got a few tips you can try out in these instances:
- Shorten your name, try a play on your name, or spelling it phonetically – get creative!
- Try keywords (e.g. products, services, values you offer)
- Add a location
- Use an underscore
- Use a verb before your brand name (e.g. “try”, “get”, “go”) or afterward if there’s one that would make more sense. We opted for @getkimp 🙂
- Try to make it memorable and easy to spell
2) Fill Out Every Single Field
Your profile shares your story. And an incomplete story will make your brand seem careless at best and unreliable at worst. Provide your customers with accurate and high-quality descriptions of who you are. Add your values into your profile so that your audience can get to know what drives you.
And keep your profile up to date! The profile section of any social media platform can and should change with company updates. At the same, platforms are often adding new fields to allow brands to better tell their stories. They also add templates for different brand/business types so that you can optimize your profile to your needs. Take advantage of this!
You might have completed every last field of the profile section when you started a social media account. But if you go back now, you might find that there’s a bunch of empty fields.
3) Be Consistent
When your target audience visits any of your social media profiles, they should get a consistent idea of your brand. From your profile, to the designs you post for your cover and profile photos, as well as the content you share.
Be sure to develop a strategy that is consistent across your branded social media profiles. Remove any information that is contradictory or redundant. To help you maintain consistency across platforms, use the same keywords to describe your brand.
In terms of your profile and cover images, you may want to consider what’s common practice for those in your industry. And what the pros and cons of following or breaking from the trend may be. For example, using a picture of the person who’s the face of the brand vs the logo.
For your cover photo, you’ve got a lot more space, so consider how you can make the most of this real estate. You could include a great photo of your product. Or you could opt for a lifestyle shot, showing how those in your target audience enjoy or benefit from your product or service.
You can also go in a completely different direction. Try out a design that includes your brand colours, relevant elements and maybe a keyword or phrase. Test out different options until you land on the look and feel that performs the best. It should also represent how you want your brand to be known.
And use the same profile image and cover photo, resized appropriately, overall your branded social media profiles to build up a strong visual identity. Or you run the risk of diluting your brand, and making yourself less recognizable.
4) Link to Your Profiles To Amplify Reach
This is one of the easiest ways to get your follower numbers up. Tell your audience about which platforms they can find you on. While social media platforms share many traits, they also each have unique characteristics as well. This might mean the particular demographic they appeal to or the types of content that they allow you to share.
Be sure to include links to your social media on your website. And social share buttons on your blog content, as well as your email newsletters and blasts.
You can also cross-promote your branded social media profiles. Facebook allows you to add more than one website field. Pinterest allows you to connect to your Twitter and Facebook accounts. And LinkedIn allows you to link to your Twitter account. For an account like Instagram which allows you to share just one link, you can try mixing it up by sharing a different link every so often. Think landing pages, unique content, promos, etc. Or you can check out options like LinkTree or Link In Bio. These options allow you to link to a clickable landing page, directing your audience to the content that will help them learn more about you.
5) Be On The Lookout For Tags
This may sound a little dramatic, but we’ve all seen cases where one post can make or break a brand. Any good marketer is aware of this. And they do their best to provide relevant content to their customers through their social media posts.
But you’re the only one that can control the content you post. There’s always a chance that customers, competitors, or someone who’s decided to troll your brand, will tag you in unrelated, and even harmful posts.
Be sure to keep an eye out for photos and posts that your accounts are tagged in, on a regular basis. And un-tag yourself from anything you deem inappropriate or offensive. Even if the post is not inappropriate, remove the tag if it is not related to your brand.
To help you with this, you can adjust your profile settings so that posts can only show up if you approve the tag. Or you may even be tempted to disable tagging altogether. But this is something you’ll want to evaluate based on whether user generated content is something you rely on. Especially as it can help increase brand awareness.
Tweak, Test, and Optimize Often
Setting up and maintaining your social media profiles may seem overwhelming. Especially when you’ve got a ton of to-dos on your plate. So start small. You can sign up for accounts across all the social media platforms you want branded social media profiles on. Then start posting to one and scale up, tweaking, testing, and optimizing as you go. This way you’ll have secured your username across all the platforms, but won’t be overwhelmed when it comes to maintaining a bunch of profiles.
Need some ideas on how to create a consistent visual identity? Check out our tips for creating a brand style guide.