Not all social media sites are created equal. Though we tend to lump them together in our marketing strategies, each serves a fundamentally different purpose. As such, while your brand voice should be consistent, you’re not always better off merely copy-and-pasting your captions from one site to another. After all, what works for Instagram does not necessarily work for Twitter. Here are some tips to tailoring your voice on social media.
Find Your Own Voice
Finding and focusing your brand voice is one of the most important things you can do for your online brand strategy. Not only does it help engage your audience, but it will also help you define your purpose and mission. This is where you can have the most impact on readers.
As such, it doesn’t matter what you’re marketing, as long as you maintain your brand voice. You can dress it up or dress it down, but make sure you stay true to yourself as a means of ensuring you keep a good brand fit.
Know Where to Keep it Casual
There are certainly a number of social media platforms where you can keep your voice casual, meaning using expressions, abbreviations, asking questions, etc. Think of writing this type of content as the same as writing a thoughtfully crafted text message.
It is best to take this approach on platforms where writing isn’t the primary focus of content. This means Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and certain Facebook pots. People scroll through hundreds, if not thousands, of posts each day, and they rarely have the mental energy to appreciate, let alone engage with, a formal statement. Unless your branding excludes the use of colloquialisms or more casual copy, keep your tone light on these platforms.
Casual copy and content has the added benefit of driving audience engagement. Choosing not to sound formal and robotic helps to maintain a more human voice and establish a more authentic connection, an invaluable tone to set on your online platforms.
Take note that “keeping it casual” isn’t a license for sloppy writing, incorrect spelling or poor grammar. Even when writing colloquially, use proper punctuation and syntax, or you risk stepping on the wrong side of the line between casual and unprofessional.
Know Where to Dress it Up
It’s not great practice to be casual everywhere. You are, after all, representing a business, and you should be ready to dress up your copy from time to time. This means copy on your own website, or formal announcements on social media or elsewhere, should be carefully and formally written.
By dressing up, this means avoiding colloquialisms, using a more sophisticated vocabulary, and keeping things well-organised. Short paragraphs, concise sentences, you get it.
Sometimes, you’re going to have to bite the bullet and write in corporate speak. This means avoiding conjugations, using technical and sophisticated language, and keeping sentences short and formal.
So there it is, as easy as Insta-pie! Now you’re ready to start writing better copy for whatever platform necessary.
Ronn Torossian is the CEO and Founder of 5W Public Relations (5WPR)