Before a brand hops on to social media, the brand team usually gets busy working on the preparations for the brand’s online presence. However, what most social media agencies fail to see is the big picture, which in essence is the brand’s personality.

Before writing about the importance of reflecting the brand’s personality on social media, let’s define the meaning of a brand’s personality.

Brand personality in its simplest terms is associating human characteristics and traits to your brand to determine how it should speak and behave. Imagine that you are a brand (you could be one, one day!), your personality is reflected in what you say, how you dress, what car you drive, your favorite movies..etc, and same goes with a brand; the brand’s personality is reflected on everything, from the logo to the imagery and tone of voice.

Determining a brand’s personality can help the team work towards a consistent message and image in all sorts of communication, thus, defining it (that’s if you still don’t have it defined yet) is essential especially when a brand is on social media. This is because it has to speak more often than it does offline. Having the brand ON-line means it’s always ON, it’s on air, it’s live 24/7. On social media, the brand needs to behave like a real person, be spontaneous, communicate on the spot, have timely responses; in other words; be ALIVE, yet within its own unique personality.

Let’s look at some Global brand personality traits:

Example 1: Coca-cola

On Facebook, Coca-cola uses a tone of voice that is friendly, human, and down to earth. Imagery and activations reflect the brand as a life embracer that appreciates humanity.

Cover Photo:

Cocacola-cover

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Example 2: Google

Google

Google’s innovative, and playful personality is reflected in the style of its illustrations.

Example 3: IBM

IBM

IBM reflects a reliable and trustworthy brand on social media.

Example 4: Burger King

Burger King

Burger King’s imagery of burgers that complements their offline ads.

It’s no accident that we identify so closely with these brands, especially on social media. All of them worked hard to ensure that their social media presence reflects their brand personality, look, and sound real!

In fact, real is a key word here, why? Because social media opens up the room for a two-way communication, and unlike offline advertising, your brand is less likely to be hiding behind an extravagant advertising copy appearing on a billboard across the street anymore. When a brand is online, it means, the online audience out there are expecting  the brand to talk to them, and reply to them anytime and anywhere. The brand can excel in social media as long as its brand personality comes out to be real and original.

It’s rare to be real these days, so brands need to take the extra step and work hard to have it appear real and genuine. Below is one of my favorite quotes from a book by Gillian Flynn

“I don’t know if that we are actually human at this point, those of us who are like most of us, who grew up with TV and movies and now the internet. If we are betrayed, we know the words to say; when a loved one dies, we know the words to say. If we want to play the stud or the smart-one or the fool, we know the words to say. We are all working from the same dog-eared script”.

To be real from a social media perspective is to speak in the brand’s voice, and stay original and real.

In conclusion, social media is like uncovering your brand and presenting it as a  real human with real traits. The more real and relevant your brand is in speaking to its audience, the closer your fans would feel towards your brand, and the easier it is to build a relationship with.

Post by: Mira Hamati

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