In addition to the visual appearance and substance of your brand, it’s also important to have a consistent tone of voice and voice. In the case of a brand, whether it be a person or a business, having regulations in place may be quite beneficial. It may aid in the development of a brand’s identity by establishing a sense of coherence. Creating a social media style guide is the best method to do this.
So, where do you even begin? What exactly is a social media style guide? And why do you need one? We’ll answer these questions and more in this post.
As a social media manager, what do you need a style guide for?
Social media style guides are documents that explain the vocabulary, syntax, tone, and personality of your brand’s social media presence. You may notice that your favorite social media accounts have a consistent look and feel, which suggests that they have a style guide in place for all of their content. A set of rules that are in keeping with their brand’s style and voice are being followed.
Having a brand guideline in place is a wonderful place to start when creating a social media style guide.
What’s the point of having one?
Consistency is one of the most significant and convincing reasons for establishing a social media style guide. Using a variety of styles, materials, or tones on social media platforms might seem chaotic or amateurish to your target audience. In order to create a solid connection with your audience, it is important to have a consistent brand voice across all social media channels.
The things you need to get started with social media
When embarking on any undertaking, the best place to begin is with research. The fundamentals, such as learning how to read and write, are essential.
What impression does your brand leave on your followers and prospective customers? Which expectations would they have for you? How would you describe the pitch of your voice?
What platforms are you going to be using? Would you want to use LinkedIn, or would you prefer to utilize the photo-sharing platform Instagram? A combination, perhaps? In terms of your brand’s image and audience, what do you think would be the most effective?
How do their rivals portray themselves? On topics such as addressing complaints or making announcements, how do they communicate with their audience? Is there a sense of levity?
Gather your visual evidence! Collecting visual representations of the topics you like is a smart place to start. It’s a good idea to experiment with a variety of material formats on each social media network, including photographs, videos, and gifs.
When generating visuals and phrases, keep in mind that if you already have a brand identity, it’s definitely worth referencing it. Instead, if you already have a brand style guide, you can utilize it as a starting point for your social media guide, particularly when it comes to things like picture and video formats, color schemes, and font selections.
You may begin putting the pieces of your social media style guide together after you’ve finished your research. The language, messaging, and content of your social media sites are all considered here.
Accounts on social media
Make a list of all of your social media accounts and link to them. This will assist you in remembering the usernames for all of your many online accounts. To make it simpler for people to locate you across all platforms, make sure that your usernames are also consistent.
@brand name US is an example of a suffix that might be utilized. Users may benefit from suffixes like these if your company has locations throughout the globe. It helps you target a certain market and lets your customers connect with the brand for many reasons, including customer service.
Decide what you’re going to write about social media.
For each social media network, it’s time to figure out what you’re going to publish and how often. You can only use LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to advertise employment opportunities. However, behind-the-scenes posts may be limited to Instagram. Or maybe what you post on TikTok is not what you might want to post on Facebook or Twitter.
Your style guide should provide information about character constraints for each platform. When it comes to social media, it doesn’t matter if a platform has a restriction on the number of characters that may be used. Facebook postings should have no more than two paragraphs, and Instagram posts should have no more than one phrase and one or two emoticons.
Employ it to keep track of the various social media picture sizes and styles you wish to use, such as just using bright brand colors as backdrops for product shots when publishing material about giveaways or using darker backgrounds when presenting timeless content and items.
Words and phrases associated with a company’s
Branding is an important part of a company’s identity. How do you refer to your staff? Your brand and company should be described by a few key phrases. In the instance of 99designs, the lowercase ‘d’ is used instead of the uppercase “99” or “99 designs.” Alternatively, you might choose the term that best characterizes your business. What is it? The release date and location are unknown.
Voice and tonality social media
This has to do with the tone you want to project to your audience. Think of adjectives like “funny,” “irreverent,” and “cheeky” as starting points for developing your brand’s style and general tone. Alternatively, a cautious and professional approach may be more suited. It all depends on what you’re doing and who you’re trying to portray as a brand.
It’s important to ensure that the style you choose for your social media accounts communicates nicely. Is your lighthearted demeanor a good fit for LinkedIn as well as for Instagram? Alternatively, how can you use your sense of humor to your advantage on LinkedIn? In certain cases, it may have to be toned down a notch for more professional websites.
See Tony’s Chocolonely in the image above. To express their message and ideals, they publish on social media. Facebook and Twitter postings have slightly different lengths, but the tone, content, and value are all identical across platforms.
the language that is welcoming to everyone.
When we communicate, we need to think about how we refer to others, who we include in our discussion, and how we use language. Instead of referring to a group of individuals as “men,” use gender-neutral language. Instead of squirming and scrambling at the last minute, it’s important to spend some time now thinking about and defining how your language will be inclusive.
Correct spelling, grammar, and punctuation throughout the document.
Is the Oxford comma a regular part of your writing style? Do you spell things out in British or American English? Defining this in your social media style guide can help you maintain uniformity. Your social media style guide doesn’t need to include every single word that you like but mentioning that you use American spelling is sufficient.
Grammar and punctuation aren’t the only areas where this applies. You may use the AP Stylebook or the Chicago Manual of Style as a reference. In the event that you find anything in the style guidelines that you don’t like or that doesn’t fit your brand, tone, or voice, you may make changes to your social media style guide from there.
In recent years, a growing number of businesses have adopted the use of emojis as part of their communications strategy. They’re commonly used to illustrate or punctuate and may be a valuable technique for increasing the visibility of your messages on social media.
Using emojis is a common practice for Headspace, a meditation software, in their Instagram posts, and they frequently include them in the content itself. This perfectly captures their approachable demeanor. Make sure the emojis you use represent your brand’s personality just like the written language.
Social media and hashtags go hand in hand. If you want people to discover your brand, it’s practically a given that you’ll need them. Use the hashtag #veganchocolate to help consumers locate your goods and company if they’re looking for them.
There are a number of ways you may use this feature, such as allowing readers to easily access and locate additional postings about your product or service.
Use the popularity of a popular hashtag to your advantage. Using famous or trendy hashtags is OK, as long as you don’t use them if they don’t fit your brand or product. Customers will be turned off by the appearance that you’re out of touch.
When promoting a campaign or a product, always double-check the hashtags you select to utilize. When it comes to hashtags, you never know who else is using them and for what purpose.
Set up your social media style guide: You’re all set to put up your official social media style guide. Just keep in mind that this isn’t the end of the road, but rather an excellent place to begin. It’s possible that as time goes on, you’ll need to make changes to your guide because new information becomes available or because some of your postings don’t perform as expected. There may be a demand for more social media sites. Add to and improve your style guide as you make selections.
As time passes, it will become a significant asset to your business’s visual identity and a way to ensure that your target audience is interested in your brand and loyal to it.