How do you maintain a positive brand image in a world where brands are under more scrutiny than ever before? How can you influence how users interpret what they see online or do damage control when a customer complains to their closest 5,000 friends? It requires a lot of vigilance and a lot of work boosting positive brand perceptions.
Twitter is one place where promoting your brand can be a delicate balancing act. Awareness of an issue on Twitter can spread much faster than in other social media channels. Here are some things to watch for so you can keep your positive brand image.
The first step is to be aware of what people are saying about you in the first place. There are several monitoring tools out there which can watch all of your social platforms, including fast-paced ones like Twitter. (Check out 11 Powerful Social Media Monitoring Tools from the folks over at Hootsuite for more information about tools you can use.)
You can and should also take the time to check the feeds with your own eyes. For example, let’s say you’re put in charge of a mortgage company’s social media monitoring on Twitter, you would simply type that handle into the search bar to see what was being said. You’d do this on every social media channel you participate in, on major search engines, and perhaps even channels you’re not a part of but are popular. That way, you can get a complete picture of what was happening.
Think Before Acting
Twitter is a social platform where people are reacting to one another in real time. It’s been described as a gigantic dinner party where everyone’s talking and everyone’s listening. And, while it might be sorely tempting to just jump into the fray without fully understanding the hashtags or the context of a situation, it’s generally ill advised to do so. Many social media faux pas that make it to the wider, more international stage, start on Twitter.
If you’re interested in seeing a real world example, look up the phrase “Digiorno and why I stayed” and see what type of backlash that they received. Trying to surf a trend isn’t worth the risk of a wipeout. Do your research first.
You want to be approachable online. This means that your feeds need to have the appearance of looking like it’s being run by a human. If it reads like an advertising ticker, you won’t get anywhere. Master the art of conversational English.
Talk with others about the issues of the day and posts you’ve found that are related to your business. Consider joining new conversations if you feel like you have something to add, though be sure to keep the previous point in mind. Make sure your presence will help rather than hinder.
Control the Conversation
Even though the users control the reaction, you control the conversation when you take an active role on your channels. You gain power when you respond to someone’s response to something you posted or when you calm a situation down that’s getting out of hand. Your feeds are like a public face for your company. Show that you mean business by staying assertive and presenting your views while still respecting the people on your feeds.
Maintaining and upholding your brand image is necessary for every company, whether large or small. You should work on building a brand image program that will help your company weather any storm that comes its way.