Do's and Don'ts of Social Branding


Do: Recruit your front-line workers. They already know your products and services, and they’re trained in customer relations. After all that, learning how to tweet is easy.

Do: Share ownership. Teamwork, people! Don’t waste time figuring out who has authority over which bit of social media. The whole team needs to partner on equal ground to be successful.

Do: Include social media in your employee guidelines. Even if an employee is not part of your social media team, they’re still engaged in social media. You might even go the extra mile and create a whole playbook for every employee, focusing on appropriate behavior for each social media channel.

Do: Be nimble. Social media moves fast–you can’t afford to spend too much time making decisions or creating elaborate processes of approval, or you could miss out on a fleeting opportunity.

Do: Trust your internal staff. They know the subject and can provide the best strategy and direction on short-term social media decisions.

Do: Hire, if you can. Once you’ve found the most social savvy members of your own team, hiring one person with a specialty in social media can save your organization a lot of time.

Do: Share knowledge. Create space and time for colleagues to discuss best practices and learn from other organizations. Groups like the Social Media Business Council or Word of Mouth Marketing Association can be good resources for case studies and real-world experience.

Don’t: Impose too many restrictions. It’s scary opening up your brand to social media, so your impulse may be to list in detail what can and cannot be said. For your social media team, offer suggestions, examples and recommendations. For your employees as a whole, remind them that they are representing your organization in all media.

Don’t: Sound schizophrenic. When more than one group responds to customers, it can get confusing fast. A unified voice is reassuring and efficient.

Don’t: Give it all to the intern. Social media takes a lot of time, so you may be tempted to offload the day-to-day duties to an unpaid staffer. This is the work of seasoned community managers – experienced people who can manage relationships on behalf of a brand.

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