Developing a Consistent Brand is a powerful concept presented in Justin Seeley’s class “Designing for the Social Web” on Creativelive.com. Justin taught the class to unify our brand across the many different social media platforms out there. The entire course is inexpensive and worth purchasing and going through but I will present a few of my main take away concepts.
The basic concept is that sometimes, we put different descriptions, taglines, and content on each social network, depending on when we signed up. This can be confusing to your visitors. It would be more effective for your business to create a set of assets which you could use across all social media platforms and tweak them.
Create A Visually Consistent Brand
Since we just installed Yoast’s WordPress SEO plugin, let’s take a look at Yoast’s branding across his website and social media venues.
Obviously Yoast has a nice graphic design team to produce these unique images. But at first glance, the Yoast brand is very recognizable. Bright colors, the patterned background, the cartoon artwork. There’s no confusion when you go to a Yoast branded site. This is the consistency you want for your business.
For additional homework, do a search on Yoast and read the text on each of his bio’s. You’ll note the similar wording, same keywords across all his platforms. When you come to any of his sites, there’s no question what he does, his products, etc. That’s our goal for our business too.
How to achieve a visually consistent brand:
- Create a folder on your computer for your brand assets and place all your branding images, files, etc. in this folder.
- Choose a set of photos for your company’s brand (of yourself if you are the brand or photos which represent your brand)
- Create a square image which can be used as your profile pictures
- You may have a portfolio or similar set of your featured work.
- Keep your branding folder up to date with the most recent assets
- Consider creating a “Media Kit” section on your website with photos and sample text.
- Come back to this folder any time you want to promote your brand.
- Bright colors in your profile picture really stand out in Google’s black text on white background.
- Cartoony characters like Yoast’s are popular right now.
- If you add text to your image, keep it to a minimum. I use my websites on my images because I want people to go from my social networks back to my website.
Create A Textually Consistent Brand
Although a picture speaks a thousand words, when we are talking about the internet, we still need plain old words. Search engines only read words. They don’t read images. So as good as your images are, if you don’t have text on the pages of your website, people won’t be able to find your brand. So we also need to consider creating a consistent brand in terms of text and content.
We’ve talked a little about creating a Meta Description for your website. If you did your homework researching keywords for your business then most likely you have come up with a great Description that can be used across all your brands. And don’t worry, your brand description can evolve over time.
You may have seen the description for this website.
Small Businesses and Non-Profits need Resources for Websites, WordPress, Online Marketing, SEO, Social Media and Technology.
That description describes my brand, it’s filled with keywords and phrases which I believe will do well on Google and summarizes my experience and expertise.
This is the description you will see on my Facebook Page, Google+ Page, Twitter Description, and on my website.
Additional content to create a consistent brand
- An expanded bio for yourself and your business will be great in different sections of your website.
- Several paragraphs about your business’ background and experience will also contribute to your brand.
- Coupons, Special Offers, etc. should be consistent throughout all your social media. This is not to say you can’t run a special just for Facebook, but you want to begin to standardize the text and keywords you’ll use for your offers.
If you have additional branding ideas, please leave them below in the comments. Of course this is a brief overview of branding, but something to get us started.