Humans are social beings by nature. We long for connection and interaction – especially with other people. Ten out of ten cases, a customer chooses to interact with a person through a cold business unit. This clearly disadvantages brands, but it doesn't necessarily have to throw you out of the game.
The most successful brands – the Coca Colas, Apples and Nikes in the world – do not allow this inhibitory factor to prevent them from contacting consumers. Instead of waging a hard fight to reset the way people think and interact, they work with the natural tendencies of the human brain. They humanize their brands in a way that makes their marketing more understandable and magnetic – and you can too.
To humanize your brand, feel like a friend your customers have known for years. It's not about predictability, it's about familiarity. Your goal is to be reliable and magnetic, consistent and honest, reliable and warm.
Here are some ways you can humanize your brand online and win big:
“For many brands, being human is more a projection than a practice. However, sounding human is different from being human, ”emphasizes GetCraft. “The humanization of brands is not an easy task that can only be carried out by social media managers. It should naturally spread from your own corporate culture. "
The idea that you should stay true to yourself sounds clichéd and cheesy, but is absolutely necessary. We are not talking about being true to yourself in the sense that you are "chasing your dreams". We speak of authenticity and consistency.
Your branding should match who your company really is. If your company is full of quirky people who like to have a good time, your branding should be creative and spontaneous. If your company is very professional and thoughtful, your branding should reflect these behaviors.
If you stay true to your brand, your marketing will be much more natural. You don't have to worry about how to say, filter, censor, or optimize something. It naturally flows out of what you are already doing. (And people notice that!)
Think about the last time a friend recommended a product to you – a product that you finally bought. Whether it was a book, a car, or a new restaurant, it is highly unlikely that your friend came in and delivered a buttoned sales pitch. Instead, he made you aware of why he liked the product so much and why you needed it.
Think of your online audience as a group of your friends. Do not deliver advertising. Instead, focus on educating them. Highlight their problems, acknowledge the friction they are dealing with, and carefully mention how your products are addressing these problems.
When discussing your products, focus on solutions, not functions. In other words, don't sell your audience with the fact that your flashlight has twice as many lumens as its closest competitor. Instead, help them understand why a brighter flashlight is better and what solution your model offers (in this case, increased visibility and safety).
People love to see what's going on behind the scenes. This is why film outtakes, documentaries, backstage tours and biographies are so popular. Any opportunity to take your audience behind the scenes will do wonders for your brand.
Facebook Live is one of the best options. It can also work as simply as pictures of a company picnic or a blog post about how the idea for the latest product came about.
Nothing against written copies, but it does not come close to the value of visual content. Seeing is one of the strongest human senses. To really connect with people, your brand needs to use as much visual content as possible. This includes:
People occasionally act based on their character, but for the most part people tend to behave in a way that matches their personality. The same should apply to your brand.
The best way to keep your brand voice consistent is to create and maintain a brand style guide. Every time a new employee is hired, they should have to read this style guide from front to back (regardless of whether they produce content or work in a customer-facing position).
A human-to-human relationship is a one-way street. When a person suddenly stops interacting, the relationship ceases to exist. The same applies to a brand.
It is important to get involved back and forth. Make sure you ask questions, answer questions, share ideas, and listen. Social media is the perfect environment for that, but you can also get involved through blog comment areas, forums and message boards, emails, and even podcasts.
It is difficult to be everywhere at the same time, even if you have a large marketing team at your disposal. One way to reduce this pressure and still maximize engagement is to work with social media influencers.
Influencers should be selected very carefully (and continuously monitored). You want people who reflect your brand values and understand your goals. You can be yourself, but you need to make sure that your true self is essentially the same as your brand identity. Too much inconsistency leads to problems for your brand.
There are many good brands, but very few take the time to humanize their approach to maximize engagement and build healthy, long-term relationships with customers. However, you can be the exception.
As you can see, humanizing your brand only means breaking the cold, business jargon and showing the market who you really are, what you believe in, where your passion is, and how you can get people out of where they are where they want to be. If you do these things well, you will beat the competition with consistency and predictability.