This is a guest post from Nathan Bush from the blog Another Advertising Wanker and Social Media Strategist for DP Dialogue.
Do you think that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles would have been the 90's cartoon sensation if they looked like this...
instead of this...
Of course they wouldn't have. Turtles don't have much personality (and I've never seen them skateboard) but these ones did. Whether it was Leonardo as the strong leader, Michaelangelo as the cool slacker, Donatello as the intelligent problem solver or Raphael as the aggressive bad boy - everyone had a favourite turtle they could relate to and aspire to be like. They transformed turtles from boring water creatures to gnarly crime fighters.
Personality is very important in socail media communication as well.
I'm sure you're across it - you've got your Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts set up. You've used this to reach your costomers and initiate the dialogue. You've reached a decent number of followers, friends and fans. However, it's not good enough to be one of your consumers 500 friends on Facebook, one of 2,000 followed on Twitter or one of 20 videos viewed per day. You need to be one of the important ones.
We all do it. There are those people we are reluctantly Facebook friends with but hide their updates from our feeds, skim their blogs but never feel compelled to comment and follow their tweets but filter their updates on Tweetdeck. It's going to be personality which elevates you to the VIP group in their social media circles and ensure that the communities you've become involved in get involved with you!
Red Bull uses Facebook and Twitter particularly well to create the extreme, gusty and active Red Bull personality. They post extreme sport pics and vids. They use words like 'sick', 'rockin' and 'killing it'. They talk to and about celebrities with similar personalities. They use minimal punctuation and write off the cuff. And occasionally they plug their product. It makes the Red Bull brand feel real and as close to a real person as a product can get. If you're in this scene, Red Bull will be seen as a peer and an information source in the same category as Shaun White or your yearly snowboarding buddy.
But personality ain't easy. This is especially true for a brand who has got marketers, writers, developers, designers and CEO's coming together to sound like the one identity. While personality should come naturally, it is important that all contributors in the team have a clear understanding on who the brand is. If the brand was a person how would they talk? Who would they talk to? What would they do on the weekend? What is their favourite drink? Who are they shagging? How often do they call their mother? Bring the brand as close to a real person as you can and put it all out there.
After all, if they can do it with turtles, I'm sure you can do it with your brand. Cowabunga!
Turtle photo courtesy of Arrr! on Flickr