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Creating a brand ready for social media – part 4

In the last of our joint series of four blogs on building and protecting your brand for social media, Scott McLean, managing director of our sister agency, Speed Communications, offers 10 top tips for protecting and enhancing your brand online.


  1. Don’t use social media because everyone else is. Its use must be linked to wider communication objectives.
  2. Be where your audiences are, not where you would like them to be. And consider whether an ‘owned media’ platform could be a more effective means of engaging or act as a digital destination for wider digital engagement.
  3. When it comes to social media, content is king. This is regardless of whether you plan to broadcast information or creating engaging content that encourages interaction.
  4. Social media is about sharing ideas, it is not just a way to pat one another on the back, or give them a good kicking. People are interested in ideas (and content) and the brand is a facilitator of that content. This facilitation enhances the brand.
  5. Don’t get your metrics in a twist. So-called vanity metrics – like page views and Pinterest visitors – are no good if they bounce and never come back. Measure what’s sticky. Did they download something, say they ‘liked’ or Plus1’d it, did they register for content behind a wall, or for a newsletter?
  6. Social media exploits traditional PR techniques. Get people to talk about you. Journalists, bloggers, opinion formers. Engage them in the same way as you would journos. Choose five and go after them.
  7. Social media is not a standalone communication channel. Your audience does not simply reside on Twitter/Facebook. They also read newspapers, watch TV, walk down the street and generally consume information from an incredibly wide range of media. Therefore, be integrated.
  8. Be absolutely clear about how different channels work. Twitter is there to say to the world that you are connected, informed, interested, relevant. Facebook is there to build communities and get people to talk about you and your business, or facilitate conversations or information swapping that wouldn’t ordinarily happen in the non-digital world. LinkedIn is not just about finding jobs. It’s a research tool to find and connect with like-minded people who can be your collaborators, advocates and storytellers. Blogs are about expressing a point and offering something free: content, processes, insights, research, anecdotes.
  9. Don’t rush onto new social media platforms just because you can. Maintaining any channel is resource intensive and should be driven by where your audience goes.
  10. SEO is all very well for the big boys, and you shouldn’t ignore it, but what you really need is connected content. Offer guest blogs, films and animations, images, infographics. You’ll benefit from others’ SEO. Find complementary partners, people who will sit well with your brand.

Find our related posts on creating brands for social media, how brands are using social media and why you should consider using social media for your brand.

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