Do you think about your brand before you post on social media? In fact, do you know what branding looks like on social media? Some service providers may tell you that a brand means you have a logo and your name in a graphic for your cover photo, but that’s not really branding—that’s graphic design.
Whether you understand or have thought about your brand or not, your cumulative Facebook and Google Plus posts, tweets, and videos are all expressions of your brand. Hopefully you like what you see when you review your existing brand on social media. The good news is you can makeover what you don’t like, and create, or re-invent your brand if needed. Ideally you know what your brand is or set intentions for what you want your brand to say about your practice.
Branding is a topic that can seem mysterious and heavy to some business owners, healthcare practices included. However there is a simple way to begin considering your brand. In the book, Making Money Is Killing Your Business, Chuck Blakeman describes how your core values reflect your brand. Chuck offers a simple exercise to uncover your values—and often personal and business/professional values are the same. Here are examples of core values:
- Life long learning
- Sustainable living
You can make up your own list of value “words” that resonate or are meaningful to you. While the list of values to choose from is endless, you should end up with three to five words that best represent you. These core values will then give you a good idea of what your brand might stand for and look like.
In turn, your social media posts should take your values into consideration. For example, if your values are: Family, sustainable living, community, and joy, these themes should be visible in your posts. When you see your values expressed in your posts, you are authentically reflecting your brand in social media (winning!). On the other hand if your social media content is not congruent with who you are or what your practice stands for, then you need to spend some time considering your values or reworking your content strategy.
What does your social media tell patients, colleagues, and your community about you and your brand? Is it winning by expressing what you want others to know about you?