As a social media manager, one of my best practices is to create a consistent social footprint for my clients. What exactly does this mean? Perhaps you’re planning to create profiles on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn. When people check out your profiles on each network, you want the profiles to have the same look and feel, so potential customers know they’re looking at the same person or company. The main ways to create that look are as follows:
This seems so simple… of course you’re going to have the same name on each page, right? Well, maybe not. What if somebody has already taken the name you planned to use? For example, a company in Mexico is using @ProjectSocial on Twitter. Did you know, if a company is not actively using their account, you can go to Twitter and ask them to relinquish the name? (I hear they are pretty good about that.) However, @ProjectSocial is very active, and completely in Spanish, so no go. I came up with @ProjSocial and I also use it on my Youtube account as well. Even if you can’t get the name you want, try to choose something close. Frankly, @ProjSocial is better for me than @ProjectSocial as it saves me 3 characters in the allotted 140 characters allowed in each tweet.
Three other “Name” consistency tips:
(a) Facebook Custom URL. Once you have 25 “Likes” on your Facebook fanpage, you can go to www.facebook.com/username and choose a custom URL. Mine is www.facebook.com/ProjectSocial. You won’t always get what you want, especially if it’s not available or if the name you want has profanity in it, but it’s worth a shot.
(b) Settle on a good Page Name. Until you have 100 “Likes” on your Facebook fanpage, you can still change the name. For example, one of my new clients had the words “New Home-Based Business” in her title. We realized that eventually, the business wouldn’t be “New” so we removed the word while she had 60 fans. After 100, she would have been stuck with “New”.
(c) LinkedIn Custom URL. Many people know you can choose a custom LinkedIn URL for your personal account, but what about for businesses? I discovered that for your business, LinkedIn will automatically assign you a custom URL. It may take a few days, and it may not be exactly what you want, but it will happen. I was assigned: http://www.linkedin.com/company/project-social. That works!
2. Profile Image
So you’ve just had this fabulous logo designed, and you’re all set to upload it to all of your social profiles. After all, that’s part of why you had it designed, right? Again, maybe not. If you’re a small company with less than 5 people, you may want to consider using a nice, profile picture of YOU. And use the same one each time. Of course we know logically there’s a person responding and answering questions behind each social media account, but subconciously, people want to interact with an actual PERSON, not a logo. It goes without saying this photo should be a professional picture, not one where you’ve been partying or your neckline is a bit daring.
Nothing is better at broadcasting your consistent brand than maintaining a consistent look in your social profiles. By using graphic designers I found on Fiverr.com, I’ve created a look that tells people who arrive at my website, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube channels that they all belong to the same company. This is where you can use that perfect logo as part of your graphics, to help impart your brand. Just look at all of mine and you’ll see a consistent look. Just start by looking at my website, where you are right now. Next, my Facebook landing page:
And, my Twitter account:
Finally, my YouTube channel:
As you can see, consistency in your profiles creates a unified brand, and projects who you really are to those in your social circle. Creating that consistent social footprint is a first step on the road to a fantastic social media presence!