Developing a brand identity can do wonders when it comes to maintaining a company’s online reputation. The cold and calculated nature of the online world has made it essential that each company develops its own “tastes, opinions, and personality” when it interacts with its customers. However, with so many marketing channels available, it can be difficult to maintain consistency in your online brand.
The Importance of an Omnichannel Strategy
Once upon a time, companies had relatively narrow marketing options. They could use things like print ads, radio spots, billboards, and television. Nowadays, the number of channels to reach potential customers, even for small businesses, has skyrocketed.
Of course, most of this has come through the explosive growth of the internet community. There are countless email lists, millions of websites, and social media platforms by the dozens where consumers interact and inform themselves about companies and their products and services.
With such a broad marketplace in play, companies must strive to create an omnichannel strategy that weaves all of their various marketing platforms into one unified experience. This should clearly demonstrate that you understand and value the customer’s needs and experience.
Achieving an Omnichannel Voice Can be Challenging
When you throw everything from websites and social media channels to phone support and a brick and mortar presence into the mix, it can be very difficult to pull all of your channels into one unified experience.
The issue is exacerbated by the fact that even smaller companies often have to spread out the responsibilities and effort that goes into maintaining all of these channels. This, in turn, can lead to an inconsistent voice coming from each medium, which can disrupt the omnichannel experience and turn off customers.
How to Create a Unified Voice for Your Brand
So the natural question that follows is how to unify your brand’s voice. While there isn’t a magic bullet to solve this problem, it can be resolved through a little effort and organization. Here are some tips and suggestions for ways to unify your brand’s voice across all of your marketing channels.
Guides are a foundational piece of creating a singular voice for your brand. Brand guides can help to clearly describe what your voice should sound like (think tone, personality, vibrancy, and professionalism).
In addition, process guides can create guidelines that are aimed at formatting, standardizing, and controlling your brand. This can include formatting, grammar consistencies, and even an official company color palette that incorporates complementary, analogous, or triadic colors that can be used throughout your branding. A good process guide can help dictate how to translate your brand’s voice into reality across dramatically different platforms.
As you go about creating guides to use, make sure to take the time to carefully protect them. Sharing company data online always brings with it the risk of others tapping into your company’s “branding secret sauce.” Always make extra sure that your branding guides are shared across closed networks and are kept safely out of sight from anyone but the essential personnel who need it.
Training and Quality Assurance
Along with creating guides, it’s important to ensure that your employees are capable of creating a unified voice together. Spend time training them as they create content in your brand’s voice. Use constructive criticism to teach each employee how to hit as close to your brand’s voice as possible, especially early on as they’re learning how to craft company-specific content.
In addition, encourage interdepartmental conversations between those who are operating your marketing channels. This can help to smooth out inconsistencies in your brand’s voice from one platform to another.
For instance, a 280 character Tweet is going to flow very differently than a 10,000-word white paper on your blog. However, if those who are actually creating the content itself are in communication, they can ensure that the same tone, values, and perspectives are reflected, no matter how large or small the pieces of content in question.
In addition, on the quality assurance end of things, it can be tempting to keep your costs down by hiring independent contractors to help manage your online presence. However, if you’re looking to create a consistent and unified online voice for your brand, it’s often worth investing in full-time employees in order to facilitate their ability to work together behind the scenes.
Taking the Time to Unify Your Brand
There are many, many considerations that go into online marketing. However, one of the most critical activities — when it comes to maintaining your brand’s reputation, in particular — is properly unifying your company’s voice online. This helps to cultivate confidence in your marketing message, both for those crafting the message as well as those interacting with it. It also leads to more consistent communication with potential customers and can further develop a sense of trust and loyalty to your brand. If you focus on unifying your brand’s voice, you’ll find that everything from your brand to your customer service, engagement, and even your bottom line will benefit.
Guest article by Magnolia Potter
Magnolia Potter is a blogger from the Pacific Northwest and loves writing on a variety of topics from technology to lifestyle.