Whether you are an individual or a brand, social media puts many challenges in our path. If you are having a bad day, your personal voice can easily lean toward the negative. A company brand voice can do the same.
When you are thinking about your personal brand, though, you want to be presenting yourself as professionally and positively as possible.
Do the links that attract your attention today tend to talk about potential mistakes or potential successes? Are you posting articles about bad news stories or good ones? If you are drawn to the negative, it might be a good idea to take a break, take a walk, get a fresh perspective.
There can be a fine line between good branding and not-so-good and at times it can be hard to tell where that line falls. Here are some of our tips for walking the line:
- Universal truth–If that meme would make anyone with a heartbeat give you a high-five, you’re good to go.
- Check the source–A great quote can still come from a controversial person. If you think your audience might object to the name at the bottom of the meme, you might want to find another one with a similar sentiment.
- Timeliness–If something negative is actually taking place locally (like a fire) or it is a trending topic and you don’t mention it, you might sound out of touch. It is never out of place to wish a current event would work out as well as possible or express condolences.
- Watch out for cleverness–You are a writer and a clever turn of phrase is probably your bread-and-butter, but how many times have we seen communications pros get caught in a clever–but tasteless–tweet? Too many. Use a scheduler like HootSuite to give you time to look at that 140 characters before it gets published. Or run it past a trusted colleague if you think it is worthy, but may go out of bounds.
- Know your audience–What are they interested in? What do you have in common? What do they like that may not be your cup of tea? Your audience is not you necessarily. Put yourself in their shoes and offer them content they will want to click through to.
Sometimes personal social media communication can get difficult. We are all out there hoping like-minded folks are listening. Body language is no help. Take a breath. Your follower might be having a bad day, too.
Wendy Stackhouse for Artisan Creative