There are two main camps in online marketing: business is business and business is personal. The first camp paints itself as impersonal, professional, and aloof. The second acknowledges that people do business with people. When done right, letting your humanity shine through your marketing messages increases social media engagement – without losing the professional touch.
Virgin is Human
If you are considering any of the companies in the Virgin Group, you will probably find the personality of Sir Richard Branson plastered all over it. He has character, and his humanity shines through in the brand.
Carrie Wilkerson – The Barefoot Executive – has created a strong personal brand by retaining her humanity as a work at home mother. She frequently talks about balancing her work with raising a family, including adoption.
Brands like United Airlines don’t create much of a connection to their people. They are more about flying people around the world at the lowest cost possible. Because of that, they don’t have much goodwill when something goes wrong.
Small Business Advantage
As a small or mid-sized business, you have an advantage. Changes are you are small enough that your personality and corporate culture can shine through to connect with people. Bob Burg calls this the Golden Rule of Networking:
“All things being equal, people will do business with and refer business to, those people they know, like and trust.”
You are running a business. Your clients and customers are coming to you for a product or service. You have to maintain your brand.
However, if you find the right balance of detail and frequency, sharing content related to you and your team can allow for a deeper connection to both your customers and those who will refer business to you. The trick is usually to show a glimpse of the authentic people behind the company, without turning it into a personal page.
Mike Payne – No Payne Roofing – does a good job of mixing it up on his Twitter account. I haven’t met him in person, but it seems like talking to him would be fun.
Getting Personal about Music
After all that talk of showing a little authentic humanity, I would be remiss if I didn’t share something about me. When I am not busy running the business and serving clients, I am also a musician.
I sing and play the fiddle, guitar, and bodhran (Irish drum) in two Celtic bands. Here are two videos of Get Reel (Greg Black and myself) we shot in our new video room.
It was a chance to check out Sunwapta’s new video recording room, lighting system, etc. during one of our practices. We did the scenes in one take. I didn’t have anyone behind the cameras to make sure the subjects were centered and to allow zooming, etc. However, it does give an idea what multi-camera, a good microphone, some fancy lighting, and some backdrops can work like with minimal editing and post-recording sound processing. I’ll be writing some posts about YouTube, video shooting and editing in the future.
What are you doing to let your culture and personality through and engage with people more on social media?
Book a free marketing assessment with us if you would like to talk about how you can do more with social media engagement, recording video, or strategic marketing.