• DeJuan Wright

5 Social Media Branding Insights For Startups

Updated: Nov 15

As the owner of a startup, many things can probably seem overwhelming at times. From managing inventory, clients, accounting, staff, payroll, and a myriad of other things that can only be managed by you—the owner, or other top managers of the brand.

However, one of the easiest things to manage when it comes to your startup is your social media accounts.

I say it’s easy because one of the most fun and exciting aspects of marketing, is shaping a brand’s core base through the management of its social media. This is where you, as the owner or manager of the company can talk directly to your consumers.

More importantly, it’s where your consumers could talk to you and give you feedback on their experience with your brand. Here's a few social media branding insights to help build your startup, create a community, and engage with your audience.

1. Tell your story…daily

A mistake often made by many brands (not just startups), is neglecting to keep their audience updated on not just what’s going on with the brand—but also what the brand stands for.

How many times have you gone to a company’s social media page, scrolled down a few post—and still had no idea of what that brand stood for and what the brand represented?

As the manager of a startup, it’s imperative that you’re constantly amplifying your brand’s story to your audience via social media. You don’t have to give your brand’s bio every day (that wouldn’t be fun at all), however—you should be iterating your brand’s identity on social media on a daily basis.

Your audience should always be able to look at the last five posts on all of your social media pages and know exactly what your brand stands for.

2. Engage your audience

One key marketing principle to remember is this, people appreciate brands that appreciate them. And what better way is there to show your appreciation for your audience than by interacting with them on social media?

Your audience will appreciate the fact that you—a representative of the company, took time out of your busy schedule to help them with their inquiry—or just to show your appreciation for them supporting your brand.

3. Create your community

The most important aspect of social media marketing for any brand is simply this…create a social environment. Consumers like to interact with their like-minded counterparts. So, allow them to do just that.

The formula to creating a social environment for your brand goes as follows:

  • Create the product or service.

  • Identify what makes it different from everything else currently available.

  • Present that difference to an audience.

  • Provide a place for those that embrace your brand’s differences to gather with others.

  • Allow that community to thrive with little direction from your brand without micromanaging it.

4. Be a creator of tension

As humans, we’re drawn to tension like a moth to a flame. It’s why we love thriller movies that are loaded with suspense. It’s why fans of sports teams get so excited on draft day. It’s also why viewers of certain reality shows get so antsy in anticipation of seeing if their favorite contestant will win or get eliminated.

In his book This Is Marketing, author and marketing hall of famer Seth Godin stated, “We create tension when we ask someone to contribute to the bake sale or join our book club. We’re using one force to overcome another force (the status quo). “

One way you can create tension with your audience on social media is by doing things like coordinating giveaways or sweepstakes for your followers.

This will give your audience an incentive to engage with your brand because it’s free and inclusive. The tension is created due to the fact that the consumer doesn’t want to miss out on the prize (loss aversion is a great tension creator).

Here’s a sweepstakes idea I created that your customers will certainly appreciate—and it's sure to cause plenty of tension in the process.

Conduct a sweepstakes on social media where the first 50 or 100 people that takes a picture with one of your brand’s products, posts it on their social media page, then tags your brand’s social media account—as well as one of their friends’ accounts, will receive a valuable prize or exclusive access to your brand’s next product release.

This works because it not only involves your consumers, it also has a word-of-mouth element to it because your consumers will also include one of their friends in the sweepstakes. People love to share cool things with their friends. They also love receiving free things. Why not help them do both on social media by way of of your brand?

The key to creating tension is that it must be random. Your audience shouldn’t be able to predict when you’re going to do it—but it does need to be frequent enough so that your audience stays dialed in so that they wouldn’t miss out on your next event.

5. Be helpful

Last, but certainly not least—is the simple act of helpfulness. Helpfulness is the gift that keeps on giving. Your brand should exemplify helpfulness in every facet. One of which is through social media.

Your audience has dreams, goals, and questions that you could help them with. And if there’s something that your consumers need that your company doesn’t provide, you could be helpful by pointing them in the direction of a person or entity that does provide what they’re looking for.

In his book, Crushing It, author, entrepreneur, and social media legend Gary Vaynerchuk made this pertinent statement regarding social media branding and networking, “If you’re just starting out, this is the number one thing to do to build your brand.”

A great way to build your brand is by helping your audience daily—and social media is the perfect platform to do that.

Unfortunately for consumers, the road of helpful and empathic brands has been the road less traveled. Fortunately for you, it’s a lane that’s wide open to take your brand on the road to prosperity.