There’s a lot of talk in the social media blogosphere about the importance of personifying a brand and acting with transparency, although I’m not sure that all brand managers would agree about the first one.
What persona are you using when communicating in social media channels? Are they company branded channels or are they personal persona representing the company? In either case, the person behind it will set the tone and the language. Do you have a persona style guide describing the voice and tonality of your brand or do you rely on the employee behind the account? (Mind, in not implying that one or the other is right or wrong).
Maybe you have brand guidelines for how to visually translate your brand image, but what about voice guidelines for customer support and social channels? These are equally, if not more, important for your brand image.
@ComcastMelissa is one of Comcast’s many persona on Twitter. Certainly the intention from Comcast is to position the brand as a household service. Behind Comcast works real people just like you and me, and we’re here to help you get a better Internet and Cable experience?
Brian Solis brought up the subject in one of his blog posts and delivered a 8-step guide helping you finding your online brand persona. Although these may serve as a guideline for community managers, I still believe that changing peoples natural language tonality is proving to be difficult. Adhering your visuals to a design manual is one thing, but following a tonality guideline on a couple of 100 tweets? I’m not sure.
I think companies Social Media guidelines will do just enough. Most of them tells us the things we already know; 1) Don’t pick fights 2) Be respectful to you competitors.
Does your company have a brand persona guide?