Building brand awareness through social media

Phil Garbrecht

Understanding and tracking awareness is one of the most important steps enterprise brands can take to ensure success on digital platforms. While the concept of awareness is simple — the more people in your target market that know your brand, the greater your sales potential— it’s important to channel your efforts to build brand awareness through social media into a few key areas.

Below, we’ll explore what matters most when it comes to awareness, how your brand can successfully build social media brand awareness, and which social media best practices your brand should follow. For further details, as well as current examples of successful examples of building awareness from top brands, see our ebook, “Standing Out on Social Media: A guide for enterprises.”

Standing out on social media

The most important social media metrics for brand awareness

Knowing specific, up-to-date reach metrics matters when you’re working to build brand awareness. Specifically, it’s important to know your brand’s audience size, impressions, activity metrics, and engagement metrics. When you know how many people you’re already reaching, setting goals and measuring progress become possible.

Audience size is the number of fans and followers your brand has across digital platforms on which you’re active. Knowing these numbers, and how they change over time, is important because it demonstrates how many people are interested in an active relationship with your brand. Note that not all of your organic content reaches every fan or follower, but paid ads can give you greater control.

Impressions are the number of times your digital content was served to your audience. With impression metrics, you can instantly understand how widely your brand activity is spreading.

Activity metrics note how often your brand publishes new content and engages in conversations on social channels. Higher activity metrics generally correlate with higher impressions, but consistency is crucial: Failure to post at regular intervals will negatively affect your brand’s standing in social media algorithms.

Engagement metrics, including Likes and Favorites, measure your audience’s interactions with your brand’s digital content and demonstrate the amount of people actually seeing and connecting with your content. When a member of your audience engages with your content, their network often also sees that content, thereby boosting your brand’s reach organically.

How to successfully build brand awareness on social media

As your brand works towards building awareness, there are a few tactics that can guide your efforts, including ensuring that all of your content sounds like it came from a real person, sharing valuable content with your audience, and amplifying user-generated content (UGC).

Sound like a real person, rather than a press release: People go to social media to connect — with each other, with brands, with movements — not to receive carefully crafted corporate messaging. Most importantly, create content that aims to begin or continue a conversation instead of content that simply talks at your audience. In addition to straightforward brand, product, or service updates, you can also include narratives about the company’s founding, mission, or history, as well as internal company events and celebrations, charitable participation, prominent new hires, and wider industry or market events.

Share valuable research and thought leadership content: Sharing valuable, relevant content about your brand's industry or product category is a great way to connect with your audience. You can repurpose internal content like white papers into sequential blog posts and you can share best practice guides, tips, or creative ideas about how to use your brand’s products, and even outside studies on industry trends. With all of your content, you should strive for personalization and relevance.

Highlight UGC: Sharing content created by your fans is one of the best ways to get people engaged and it’s one of the best ways to encourage your audience to share news of your brand across their networks, all of which increases brand exposure, drives engagement, and builds awareness. Consumers have always placed high value on peer feedback about products, but it’s becoming more and more important with each new generation. Millennials even say UGC is 20% more influential in their buying decisions than any other kind of media. Video UGC is particularly valuable, especially livestreams (on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat) and immersive consumer experiences via virtual reality (VR). You can embed these experiences on your homepage and include them in your social media posts.

Social media best practices for building brand awareness

  • Keep your social network profiles complete and up to date. Many consumers may never visit your website, so social is your chance to make a lasting impression and communicate important information.
  • Determine which networks in your stack are best for brand awareness, especially for paid efforts, which ones allow you to target best, and which are most cost-effective.
  • Develop customer personas and journeys so that your brand’s social channels can support those journeys and target those personas.
  • Research relevant keywords with a social marketing tool like Khoros Marketing (which offers unlimited searches) and use these keywords in your descriptors and tags.

These are just a few of our tips for raising brand awareness on social media. For more awareness best practices, as well as further details about all of the above, download our social media brand awareness ebook. And for more information about how Khoros Marketing can aid your brand’s efforts to build awareness, and so much more, request a demo.

Would you like to learn more about Khoros?