08 Jun How Engagement Can Turn Your Mediocre Brand into a Kick-ass Brand
When I first heard about the Pepsi Refresh Project, I was blown away. The entire project is fun, social and innovative. Pepsi even scores corporate responsibility points for giving back to the community through donations.
With three separate Facebook pages for Pepsi Max, Diet Pepsi and Pepsi, nearly 70,000 Twitter followers, and an entire website dedicated to voting and discussion, Pepsi has defined the meaning of a kick-ass brand. Though they have large budgets it doesn’t mean you can’t do it too. So, without thousands of dollars, how can your brand kick-ass like Pepsi?
Companies are turning to social marketing and engagement to convert their mediocre brands into kick-ass brands. Are these brands the best at operations? Not necessarily. Do they have more resources? Not exactly. Do they have fewer costs? They sure don’t.
These brands aren’t industry leaders or the absolute best at something specific. But their personality, creativity and engagement have set them ahead of the rest to position them as a kick-ass brand.
Here are five ways to take your brand from mediocre to kick-ass status.
1. Be Real
Lately, many people have been throwing around the word “authentic”. It’s really just a fancy way of saying that you need to be real and genuine when it comes to engagement. It means throwing out the corporate language you’ve been used to.
Conversations on social media platforms should never feel forced or fake. That’s why it is important to have someone with a real passion for your industry and product managing your branded accounts.
Innocent Drinks, a natural drink company from London and an excellent example of using engagement to turn your mediocre brand into a kick-ass brand, does this well. The brand shows a picture, the name and the e-mail address of every single employee on its contact page. Their “Lest We Forget” page shows a picture, the name and a description of every former employee, even those from 1999!
2. Have Personality
Having a great online personality means you are fun, interesting and unique. It makes it easier for people to relate to. Show your community your brand’s personality and, whenever possible, the personalities of the team as well.
There is something special about your brand, right? Maybe you are natural like Innocent Drinks or have a passion for giving back like Pepsi. Highlight what is special about your brand and broadcast it!
3. Stop Selling
Social marketing is about developing real relationships and stimulating conversation. It is not about promoting your product outright or making a couple dozen 140 character sales pitches every day.
Stop selling your product and start reaching out to people who care (target market), answering questions about your product, and joining relevant conversations. Aim to follow the 95/5 rule. 95% of the time focus on engagement and only 5% of the time actively promote your product or service.
Remember, push marketing is a thing of the past. Pull marketing is the new direction. Pull fans in with personality and use engagement to keep them coming back for more.
4. Be Creative
Creativity is important to a mediocre brand. Being average means there are a lot of brands just like yours. Being more creative gives you the edge you’ve been looking for to transform into a kick-ass brand.
By definition, creativity means being new, original and having imagination. Just like having a personality, being super creative can set you apart from the competition.
Make a Flickr account to show the office happenings, create YouTube videos and ask the staff team to answer silly questions, design a fun website instead of a stuffy corporate website.
Innocent’s blog is wildly creative… literally. They recently posted a picture of a lion wearing a woman’s wig just because it was funny and creative. Their blog is simply their daily thoughts, showcasing just how creative the team is.
5. Be Constant
Here is where everything comes together. Once you’ve got the first four steps down, you’ll have plenty of people who want to engage with you. The key, then, is to keep the conversations going and engage 24/7. Social Media never sleeps, and nor does the need for constant engagement, so be ready to respond at all times.
Constant engagement, if done tastefully, will organically lead to real relationships between your brand and your fans. It’s at this stage when your fans become unofficial brand ambassadors and help spread the word.
Congratulations, you just turned your mediocre brand into a kickass brand!