Why do you need a social media style guide?

If your job entails social media management, a style guide should be considered. Whether you work for an agency or as an in-house designer, you should be building a social media style guide for your business. The style guide can smooth out many transitions and processes in a small business. For example, new employees learning about the brand, keeping multiple social media administrators striving for the same goals, handing off marketing duties, and overall uniformity in verbiage and imagery. To begin, a social media manager should set short and long term objectives to track progress, setting attainable goals for the company to achieve.

Social Media Style Guide, Social Media Marketing, Branding

Building a style guide:

Audit
Take an objective look at all of the accounts you’re managing, auditing each and every account to set a baseline from which to base progress. How many followers do you have? On average, how many “likes” does each post/image/article receive? How many times are you posting on each platform per day?

Demographic
Understanding your audience will allow you to create an appropriate and personalized voice for which all of your social media platforms will follow.

Language
As far as vocabulary goes, you will want to outline the terms that are unique to your business. Make a list of them with spelling, capitalization and synonyms. You may also want to address how you prefer clients to be addressed when responding to comments or reviews on your social media accounts.

Hashtags
To increase the exposure of your posts, consider using hashtags on platforms like Instagram and Twitter. Create a list of hashtags so that they can be consistently applied.

Platform Specific
Don’t be afraid to set strict guidelines for each platform your company uses. Facebook doesn’t offer the same tools as Snapchat does and therefore they should not be treated the same. You may choose to designate a word limit on your Instagram posts or require all Snapchat videos to document a “behind-the-scenes” type action. You can even schedule specific times for your Facebook posts to post.

Consistency is key in branding and a social media style guide is really great way to reinforce your businesses brand and voice. As a result, it will also help to keep employees focused on the same goals. Do you want to take social media management to the next level? Explore all that Hootsuite has to offer or better yet, leave it up to the pros!

 

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