CMO’s guide to Social and PR branding
Whether selling coffee or a fitness product, every brand has got a story to tell. However, with the rise in digital conversations and digital conversions, every brand is facing fierce competition trying to make the cut. Therefore, marketers need to ensure that their strategy is compelling enough to reach out to potential customers, giving them an edge over their competitors. For doing so, they need to tap into the full potential of digital mediums, before making efficient marketing strategies. Deploying social media strategy, coupled with media outreach via digital platforms compensate for a highly effective marketing strategy than opting for other paid outbound marketing methods.
The rise of social media and social sharing has given most people a fair sense of its working and nuances. One of the key aspects of social media in the post-modern digital age is social media marketing. Social media marketing pertains to creating brand awareness and helps in creating a buzz and affinity among the prospective customers. In the past five years, the concepts and the phenomenon of social media marketing have traversed as an exponentially evolved realm of integrated marketing communications. And it wouldn’t be exhilarating to say that social media marketing has had an influence on the buying patterns. Especially, the latest e-commerce trends suggest that the purchase model is in direct proportion to the verified reviews by previous customers.
Social and PR branding is a leading concern in the presentation of a product or a service. The soul of social branding lies in the clarity of the message that a brand offers to the world. In the traditional times, these tasks were through advertising and activation campaigns conducted at a massive scale, while launching a product. However, the modern approach alters significantly in how it uses the media tools in its functioning. This phenomenon has also lead many experts to claim that advertising has lost its charm amid high prices and negligent credibility. The solution to this crisis has propounded public relations to the forefront.
Let’s dispel all doubts in how social and PR branding are employed to improve a brand image of an organisation. Take for instance these two examples:
- The half apple present on Apple products makes the usage of name redundant as people are widely familiar with the brand’s services and product quality.
- Amazon always uses a smiley on the packaging. Thus, people don’t need to make guesses as to which company it belongs.
These branding and PR stunts have had long-lasting effects on the minds of the customers and have increased the
Here is the ultimate toolkit for CMO’s to implement an effective Social and PR branding:
FOCUSSING ON YOUR BRAND
Consistency: Consistency comes as an important strategy for any business to sustain in the industry. Connecting to your audience is important. You need your audience to know about your brand, what you stand for, your product and services, your brand story, marketing activities and themes. With the help of various social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram you can connect to your audiences globally.
Consistency helps to understand the customer’s mindset, their needs and goals, building familiarity and loyalty. Their suggestions can further contribute to improving your content around the product and stay updated with the trends.
Through PR branding perspective, interact with customers, prospects, journalists, bloggers, and influencers to make them aware of your product. Consistency helps to increase the brand awareness, increase social media followers, long-term relationship with customers and high ROI.
Maintain a social media and website page: Technology has changed the way we market and promote our products and services. Websites have become an important marketing model to maintain a digital presence on the web for any business. An active site helps the marketers for generating the leads. The website lets the viewers know about company’s mission, critical milestones, and influential people in your team. It gives an opportunity to share your brand story and engage people with it.
Whereas through social media platforms, you can directly connect with your customers, upload pictures of your product, let them know about the upcoming product. It gives one on one connection between the user and the company.
BUILDING YOUR SOCIAL STRATEGY
How social media enhances your brand: With the population of 2 Billion users on Facebook, the world has turned into a global village which gives an opportunity for the businesses to outreach vividly. 43% marketers admit that they have found their customers through Linkedin and Twitter whereas; the users on social media say that they purchase the product because they are following them on social sites. Social media presence gives you an insight of your users, succinctly communicating who you are as a brand and again brings a consistency for your brand. Visually appealing images of the product on social media becomes one of the major factors to attract the social media users and make them interested to know about your brand.
Identifying your social media goals: Before implementing any social media strategy brands need to identify the factors they need to work on like driving traffic to your site, engaging new customers, increasing brand awareness, raising content shares, etc. You can further measure your progress of social media strategy by its volume of brand mentions, reach, retweets, replies, likes, shares and customers reviews through comments.
What to post and where
There are various other social media platforms to reach masses like Facebook, Youtube, Linkedin, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Google Plus. These are the most popular platforms for the users and the businesses to engage.
Things you can share on social media for social media branding
- Product news
- Something which is trending by using hash tags and join the conversation by incorporating them in your posts.
- Inspirational Quotes
- Interesting facts to educate and entertain your readers
- Seasonal content about festivals or special days like Valentines
- Creating a contest for customer’s involvement by rewarding them with special hampers or coupons
- A word of thanks to the new followers and longtime fans
- Questions which gives the opinion of their customers about some particular issue
LEVERAGING PR AND MEDIA OUTREACH
What is PR and why do you need it?
Public Relations, or PR, is how you talk about your brand to the public – and therefore potential new customers – through media and social influencers. Quality public relations drive brand awareness, and sales. A successful PR makes your brand image even stronger. Therefore, PR branding gives your business a foundation of a strong brand by implementing various campaigns and interacting with journalists to raise brand awareness.
Identify your PR branding goals
As with your social media strategy, before you invest time and resources into a PR plan, you must know your primary objective and how you intend to measure your progress. Your goals might include raising awareness for your brand/company/product and enhance your search rankings. You can link your PR efforts by measuring the traffic to landing pages, shares, newly generated leads, media coverages and higher search results.
Building a rapport with reporters can be an excellent way to get your brand into widely read publications, local and national, print and digital. But before that, you must know a reporter’s beat or contact your target journalist to understand what they’re interested in covering and what they’ve recently covered. Use social media to your advantage, for example, Twitter, a popular network for journalists and a social connection could lead to high-profile coverage. Read, share and comment on a reporter’s stories to get on their radar and show that you’re well informed about their work.
On the other hand, Social influencers are a trusted sources of information and opinions. They usually have huge followings on social media accounts and blogs, but more importantly, they have highly engaged followers who frequently share and react to their posts. Getting your brand mentioned by an influencer can be a powerful way to grow your social media followers and reach a much wider audience
Every day, brands cumulatively email thousands of press releases in the hope that they’ll pique the interest of reporters and bloggers who’ll feature their news. Press releases are a great tool but should be put to use when there is substantial news to report (e.g. a new product or new business location).
Weave a narrative that draws readers and prompts a response from the journalists. Narrative elements make it easier for reporters to envision the story you hope to tell and encourages them to quote your release in their reports.