Learn From the Masters: Brands That Crafted a Cohesive Multi-Platform Social Media Brand

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A multiple platform-based social media strategy may sound intimidating, but there are already brands honing the new practice into a craft. Social media marketers have accepted both that brands can't rely on only social media platform and can't be on each one all the time. We've collected a list of brands doing multi-platform social media marketing well, for those interested in spreading their reach to more platforms and bigger audiences.

Seamless: Strong Brand Visual Identity

Seamless operates on all the major social media platforms — Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube — and benefits from a strong, visually appealing brand identity. They demonstrate a keen understanding of their tech-savvy, socially connected, young foodie demographic. [caption id="attachment_11090" align="aligncenter" width="653"] Seemless offers appetizing photos of food set to a distinct visual brand identity.[/caption] Using a mix of casual, friendly and hip voices as well as colorful, inviting imagery, the company resonated their core value proposition across social media channels. On Twitter, they'll publish simple funny messages such as, "Consider this the sign you've been waiting for: It is time to order lunch," compelling their audience to laugh and engage with a call-to-action. On Facebook, using the same tone alongside pictures and giveaways keeps the brand cohesive and captivating.

Zendesk: B2B Can Be Exciting

Well-produced photos of food are highly sharable on social media, but that doesn't mean everyone else is left in the dust. B2B companies, — including SaaS solutions — can also generate a strong visual identity and brand presence. Consider Zendesk — a tech startup providing a customer service with its own distinct branding. Customer service can often feel stuffy. Picture 10,000 stock photos of smiling receptionists with headsets and you can feel a yawn coming. Zendesk crafts a brand presence so strong it makes fans and customers alike want join. They effectively capitalize on the visual identity of "zen" with a cartoon Buddha and diverse faces of happy customers. Their tone is comfortable, confident and inviting. [caption id="attachment_11091" align="aligncenter" width="657"] Zendesk's Facebook visual theme, with their signature smiling, headset-wearing Buddha.[/caption] One look at their Facebook photos and fans are instantly transported to an ideal company culture. If you want to work there, or are considering their platform, Zendesk's LinkedIn page brings you straight into the heart and soul of their business, including informational articles and insightful guides.

Gap: Major Brand Turnaround

Gap once suffered from a major brand identity problem. The brand was popular in the '90s; so popular it's been associated with many out of style clothing trends. However, Gap hired forward-thinking designs and overhauled their image. They altered their digital strategy to appeal directly to their audience: primarily the urban and suburban female shopper with an eye for fashion on a moderate budget. They did so by engaging in their customers' world. Social causes, community interest and political commentary — the very fabric of social media relevance — became part of their regular messaging. [caption id="attachment_11092" align="aligncenter" width="519"] Gap's "One Stitch Closer" campaign shares stories of inspiring women.[/caption] From support for LGBT Pride to partnering with social causes like Upworthy, to discussing the minimum wage, they took the Gap from a clothing store to a partner for common public interest causes on Facebook and Twitter. Sure, there are photos of attractive models, but they've created an overall dynamic, fresh brand voice that resonates.

Final Tips

Crafting a cohesive brand presence across social media platforms isn't something that can be conquered overnight. It can take months of planning, designing and redesigning to come up with a brand voice that connects to customers. However, of the three previous examples, a few basic truths are clear when it comes to social media branding done right: - Keep it honest. Behind the scenes photos, social interest and community engagement go a long way. Generic stock photos do not. - Use all types of media. Images, guides, infographics, illustrations and videos work together to tell a story. - Stay consistent. The only way people will know who you are is if you stick to the same message. Change it if it isn't working or isn't comfortable--but don't be all over the place. - Make it personal. No one likes a hard sell. Keep your messaging personal and comfortable. Let selling happens naturally. Social media marketing isn't the maze some make it out to be. The greatest challenges are to find your brand's true voice and find new ways to express its ideas and philosophy.

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