In the world of social media, it is commonly perceived that things posted online are ingenuine or staged and more of a highlight reel than reality. Therefore, the notion of authenticity can sometimes go astray. For businesses and brands, appearing as truthful, genuine, and honest as well as humanising your brand is essential for online success.
Today we will unpack some simple yet effective ways to humanise your brand online and the benefits that will follow.
Putting a face to a name
Giving your online platform a face beyond the business name can be highly beneficial.
Not only does this make your brand recognisable, but it also creates a sense of connection and investment from a consumer’s point of view.
It’s important to know that putting a face to a name doesn’t mean you have to post selfies daily. Putting a face (or faces) behind a brand can involve sharing more information about your brand – from start-up to now, how you’ve grown, what you’ve learnt, and the wins and losses you’ve faced. These are all examples of creating depth for a brand online. Sharing this type of information not only acts as another type of content that you can share on your platforms, but also creates trust and allows your brand to be more genuine online.
No business has had a flawless journey filled with win after win. It’s simply not realistic. Sharing the good and the bad is a way to open up and connect with your audience. Maybe you ordered a piece of furniture and when it arrived it is 10 x smaller than you anticipated, you can all laugh about it one day!
Adding a backstory to your brand invites your audience to be more involved and invested in your journey. The more you share with your audience, the more intrigued they will become. Think of this as another form of brand loyalty. Your audience is always coming back for more!
Humanising your brand
When you alter your focus to humanise your brand online, you will naturally have a point of difference and be perceived as a unique brand. No business is exactly like yours, so sharing your points of difference will allow you to stand out.
When you are perceived as a person rather than a brand, you automatically allow yourself to be more approachable. This goes two ways. If you are open with your audience and focus on communication and honesty, it is likely you’ll see the same returned.
Humanising your brand builds relationships. Whether you are recognised at a networking event or see someone you went to school now working for a business you love, these small moments of recognition go a long way.
Here are some simple ways you can humanise your brand online:
Sharing real-life behind-the-scenes content can significantly add to your brand’s authenticity. Whether you have a new addition to your office, a fun project you are working on, or have an exciting team activity, taking a few snaps along the way can be easy to achieve.
Testimonials are a great way to strengthen your brand’s creditability. As testimonials are derived from real customers and consumers, they aren’t forced, unbiased and welcome trust.
Build relationships online
You, the brand manager/owner are human, so act like one! If approachability is your goal, communicating to your audience in a casual, friendly way is essential. Online, we are given many opportunities to communicate, so why not communicate with your audience. The concept of community management refers to the interactions online through messages, comments and shares. Social media makes it easy for us to stay connected.
Tip: Respond to messages and comments with your name! For example, “Thanks for your comment! – Eloise”
Share your story
As mentioned, in order to be authentic, share the truth about your business and how it has evolved. Sharing the ups and downs of your journey isn’t a bad thing. Rather than seeming unsuccessful, you will be able to be viewed as real and honest. Continuing to provide updates and growth is important too. It is also great to reflect upon in years to come.
As your business grows and you achieve your goals, why not celebrate them with your audience! Whether you share a quick snap on your stories, add a line to your eDM or post it on LinkedIn, all these ways enable you to celebrate your wins with your audience. Celebrating smalls wins reflects your humbleness and gratitude.
Share your team
Nothing humanises a brand more than sharing more about your team. Whether you have a big team or a small team, acknowledging each team member is important. If you own a café, for example, sharing a snap or ‘the barista of the day’ is a nice, simple way to share who is behind the coffee machine on a particular day. Sharing their name can also create an opportunity for further in-person contention.
Share your gratitude
One of the simplest and most humble ways to humanise your brand is to share your gratitude. Particularly if you are a small business, you are grateful for each customer you have, so share this gratitude with them. Reminding your audience that you appreciate them and are thankful for their support enables them to feel recognised and, therefore, more likely to stay loyal to your business. It’s a win-win!
Sharing your business’ values is another way to connect to your audience and humanise your brand. When opening about what you and your business care about the most, you will likely attract customers who share the same values. Not only this, but you can show your care and dedication to certain topics!
Humanising your brand has many benefits, both long-term and short-term. It can be achieved easily through simple posts and can show rewards in ways you have never seen before.