BrandingMastering social media to help build a brand is hard, which is why the most successful corporations spend big bucks with agencies whose sole purpose is to get their clients’ brands cemented in the minds of consumers.

Small businesses, however, often have extremely limited marketing budgets, which means developing, solidifying and perpetuating one’s brand often falls within the do-it-yourself category.

But that doesn’t mean small-business marketers can’t (or shouldn’t) learn a few tricks of the trade from industry giants who’ve successfully penetrated the ranks of, and maintained their status among, global brand-recognition leaders.

Take Microsoft, for example. While it certainly qualifies as a global heavyweight, and one that’s not known for tight purse strings when it comes to branding, its online marketing activities offer plenty of case-study material for small businesses trying to carve their own digital niche.

In the article, “10 Company and Product Branding Tips from Microsoft,” courtesy of digital marketing advisors Convince & Convert, the author provides a thorough list of guidelines, based on his experience studying Microsoft’s digital strategy, any small business can follow to optimize their branding and social media activities.

The 10 tips, as quoted from the article:

1. Small companies should focus on ONE brand.

2. Branding should be consistent across all channels.

3. Larger companies need to make sure company and product brands complement and support each other.

4. Not all brands need to be present on all social channels.

5. You need a brand czar across ALL social media.

6. Follow best practices for each social channel.

7. Target appropriate followers for each brand.

8. Make social activity count for each brand.

9. Beyond audience and activity, it’s all about engagement.

10. Learn what content engages with YOUR target audience.

As I stated previously, and as reiterated by the Convince & Convert article’s author, “Social media and branding are hard. Make sure you are thinking about them together to help build awareness, brand value, and market attention.”

I encourage you to visit the above-linked article and read the 10 tips in their entirety. There’s lots of really helpful—and immediately actionable—suggestions for you to use as guidelines during your forays into content marketing and branding through social media.

As always, thanks for reading.

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Small-biz tips: How to win at digital mktg. via @johnc1n & @convince

10 tips for small-biz online branding, via @johnc1n & @convince