If you find that question hard to answer, you’re not alone. For many energy companies, establishing a distinct personality through social media often seems like a pipe dream, especially when they have enough trouble establishing a regular presence or a consistent content marketing strategy on their social media channels. When tasked with so much else, creating a brand personality via social often feels like the extra sprinkles on a sundae—nice to have, but does it make a difference in the quality of the product?
Sprinkles may not add anything in the way of taste, but they sure make a sundae a lot more fun. Similarly, your brand’s personality on social media makes all your content that much more enjoyable and genuine, while simultaneously building brand loyalty with your customers and keeping them tuned in to your messaging.
All over social media, you will spot brands that have excelled at defining their voice and creating a distinct, memorable personality.
Wendy’s and Burger King have made a name for themselves that has nothing to do with their actual product; their Twitter accounts keep fans and non-fans alike attuned to their every post, all thanks to a clever, oftentimes ruthless brand personality.
The Philadelphia Flyers became one of the most talked-about NHL teams in 2018, and it had nothing to do with their win-loss record, Stanley Cup hopes or star players, and everything to do with Gritty, their new team mascot with a hilarious social media voice.
As an energy company, your brand’s social media personality doesn’t necessarily need to be ruthless, ironic or hilarious—it just needs to be your own.
Here are four questions to help guide the development of a clear vision for your company’s social media personality:
1. Who are you creating content for? What does your audience look like? Is it the same across all your social media platforms, or does it vary from one to another? Assessing your audience—being able to describe them and having a strong sense of the content that they respond to—is fundamental to establishing your company’s personality.
As a source of further insight, consider asking your current audience to describe your company through a survey, easily created through tools such as Survey Monkey or Google Forms. You could also use this as an opportunity to engage audience members on social media by using one of the Poll features on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Do respondents’ answers match how you would describe your company? If not, use the development of your company’s voice as an opportunity to close the gap between desired and actual perceptions—or to shift personality entirely.
2. What are your company’s core brand values? Revisiting these core values can provide some insight into how your brand should be perceived by customers and the general public. You may not find adjectives such as “funny,” but you will most likely find descriptors such as “honest,” “innovative,” “compassionate” and “dedicated.” At the end of the day, your social media personality should reflect these values, rather than be a stark departure from them. This doesn’t mean that your company’s social media content can’t be funny or clever. It just means that there should be a clear tie-in between your company’s brand values and the messaging that your social media content distributes. This creates a thread of consistency and cohesiveness that your customers and stakeholders will come to recognize as unique to your company across all the content it produces, ultimately helping the social media content stand out against that of competitors.
3. Who is your company’s celebrity doppelganger? This is a fun question (we’d love to see your answers to this one!), but it’s a question that provides a lot of guidance into your company’s social media personality. Companies in all industries should be able to pinpoint their celebrity or public figure doppelganger, or at least identify one that they’d like to aspire to. If your team comes up with more than one answer, try to find common themes in the answers. For example, if half of your team answers George Clooney and the other half answers Captain Planet, find descriptors that fit both. Those adjectives can act as guiding stars when developing social media copy and content, allowing the voice of your company (and its doppelganger) to shine through.
4. How don’t we want our company to be described on social media? While considering what your company’s social media personality should be, it is also important to consider what it should not be. Some are obvious; your social personality should never come across as rude, judgmental, or dishonest. Other qualities may not be as easy to identify. Regardless, keep in mind the personality traits that you would rather your audience not attach to your company. Use the answers to this question as a gut check for the social media content that your team creates.
Beyond making your content that much more enjoyable, your company’s personality on social media is essential in ensuring that your content resonates with audience members. Need help getting started? Give us a call.