Consistency is key in social media marketing. For your audience to recognize your brand, you must be consistent. Being consistent in your brand allows you to grow in audience engagement and reach. From the tone of voice used in messages to the aesthetics of your profiles, you need to be recognizable to gain traction among your intended audience.
To be consistent in the tone used in social media messages, you must first understand who it is that you are speaking to when sending those messages. For example, if you’re speaking to millennials, you wouldn’t use the same vernacular as you would if you were speaking to those in the baby boomer generation. Age, geographical location, gender, interests, aspirations--each of these segment groups of people, and knowing which group you’re speaking to allows you to choose a tone of voice that your audience will understand.
Consistency in the way you communicate online can allow people to recognize your voice in the same way you recognize your friend’s voice when they say “hello” over the phone. Brand recognition is needed to build a loyal audience and following on social media, so be true to your brand. You know who you are, what you do, and why it matters to people. It’s a balancing act. Aim to communicate in a way that stays true to your brand while also resonating with your audience. Keeping your mission, vision, and values in mind when selecting your voice and the content of your posts can help create the balance and consistency needed to market well on social media.
Don’t be scattered in what you share via social media. Show what you know and share what your audience will find relevant to their lives. The goal is to be relevant and authentic. According to Facebook Blueprint Creative Best Practices, “You need to create content that does one of the following: makes me cry, makes me laugh or surprises/provokes me.” You want to elicit a response from your audience, to naturally draw them in and get them to engage with the content you create and share.
When sharing others’ content on social media, consider the source before retweeting or hitting ‘share’ on facebook. Your posts should be accurate and ethical in content, meaning you need to make sure news being shared by you comes from an accurate and ethical source. Double check that a piece of news is accurate by cross-checking the article or post on other online sources. If other trustworthy sources have confirmed that piece of news to be true, it’s probably safe to share. If your shared content is consistently trustworthy, then, you are too. Think of this extra step in verifying information as a way to safeguard your brand and reputation.
Find a balance when posting content. Make sure that you aren’t posting too much of a certain type of content and not enough of another. For example, posting videos about home maintenance tips twice a day, every day can cause an imbalance with your other posts, like house sales or information about your business that goes out only once a week. Once you find a good balance in the amount you post for different kinds of content, be consistent when sharing that content. Having a posting schedule ensures that consistency in when you post and what you share. Schedule out each day’s posts for each social media channel and make sure that you stick with it.
Post on social media every day. Organic reach, which is the number of people you reach without paying to boost an advertisement or post, can reach only a certain amount of people. Each time you post is another opportunity to reach your audience. Posting each day strategically and consistently maximizes your organic reach.
Keep your posts to an appropriate length. Posts that are too long can be burdensome and aesthetically unappealing. The same goes for the use of excessive hashtags in posts. Hashtags are a great way to jump into the conversation surrounding a trending topic but too many can be cluttered and ineffective. A good rule of thumb is for the number of words in your caption to be longer than the number of hashtags used in the same post.
Your profile needs to have visual appeal. People are visual creatures and are naturally attracted to aesthetically appealing visuals. Make sure that your profile follows a theme. Have a color scheme for photos and use the same filter each time when editing pictures on Instagram. This creates consistency and coordination in your images and posts, which has a greater impact on consumers. Southwest Airlines uses these techniques on its social media. Its Instagram, in particular, maximizes its reach by having a cohesive, visually appealing theme that consistently reinforces its brand, which every business should aim to do when using social media to market to consumers.