Trendy. Exotic Bohemian. Preppy. Cowgirl. Punk. Artsy. Tomboy. Sporty. These are a few of the popular fashion styles we, as a society, might use today. After reading that list, I’ll bet at least one stuck out to you as a style you’ve worn before. Our mood can change our fashion style often, but overall, we gravitate toward a staple style that we are comfortable with in our daily wear.
Like fashion trends, social media has been evolving and testing new “platforms” for more than 10 years now. However, there are certain priorities that remain constant, like staple fashion pieces, and that’s a brand’s social style.
If you’re unfamiliar with what social style means, here’s the short and sweet version: It’s the style of your social profiles combined with the aesthetic of the images you post.
Design elements will shape how and if people engage with your brand. People typically don’t prefer to associate with brands who don’t look the part. For example, an avid hiker is more likely to purchase his or her equipment from the brand whose social style best reflects his or her lifestyle and personality. This comes down to style of images published but also the personality behind the content, which can also reflect that overall “social brand style.”
As social media and digital marketing evolves, brands are starting to pay more attention to what their brand image looks like. Here are four tips from our corner to help a brand enhance its visual image.
Act bigger than you are. If you’re a small brand, you don’t need to call yourself out with poor design. Make sure your social media profiles have cohesive brand imagery; the cover photos and profile photos should all look like they were posted by the same “person.” It’s important to note that each social platform has different specs, so size your images appropriately. You don’t want parts of your images cut off. That’s tacky.
TIP: Pick one Instagram filter and stick to it. This brings consistency, among other considerations, to your Instagram. Take into account not only the individual photo quality, but your Instagram feed as a whole.
Use branded theme images. Do you publish quotes as part of your social strategy? If so, stick to a cohesive look when posting these quotes. That could mean incorporating your logo colors or brand fonts into the theme.
TIP: Not a designer? That’s ok. Try Canva, a free and easy-to-use platform with template designs and formatted text, to help you get started.
Bring design to text. When people scan through their newsfeeds on their lunch break, you want to grab their attention. So do your competitors. What’s going to separate your tweet from the pack?
Add creative eye-catching symbols to your text like → My Domaine or toss in some personality with fun emojis to metaphorically make your point. You’ll get all the likes.
TIP: Do not overuse. No one likes an emoji junkie.
Add visual elements to your posts. With social platforms like Instagram, brands are more dependent on design appeal to capture the audience of each generation. When you scrolled through your personal Facebook in bed this morning, what grabbed your attention? Photos. Videos. More Photos. More videos.
Our eyes gravitate toward visual pieces and on social media that means pictures and videos. A person has an eight-second attention span and marketers have more competition today than ever before today – and it will only continue to increase. To captivate the attention you’re looking for, you need to understand the expectations of your social community. They want visuals.
TIP: Add a photo or video to every post, particularly on Facebook because of the new algorithm rules. Don’t have enough pictures? Use Twenty20, one of our favorite stock photography websites that caters to the modern expectations of consumers.
One final thought… All of these design tips will go to waste if a customer clicks from your Facebook page to your website and sees a disconnect (even if it is subconscious) in your design style. While you’re upgrading your website design, remember to make it mobile-friendly. Google changed the rules on us last year, and now all websites need to be mobile responsive to populate in a Google search.
| TIP | Modernize it. Integrate clean lines, high-res images, call-to-actions and light yet informative content.
Like fashion, there are several styles to choose from and each of us gets to find our style identity. Brands are no different.