When you're building your online marketing presence, are you thinking about your corporate appearance?
Due to the distributed nature of inbound marketing, individual efforts can easily feel "disconnected" from others. The person writing your Tweets might have little to no contact with your blogger, and neither might have any involvement in art and media direction.
Without policies in place keeping your various content creators "on the same page," it's easy to create a slapdash online presence that feels like a dozen people made it. You need the appearance of cohesion to create a unified corporate image.
The Importance of Appearances
The effect of appearance and image on your marketing is hard to quantify, but it has huge impact on how you're perceived and how memorable your brand is. A brand where every component feels like its part of a larger whole is one that makes a stronger impression on consumers.
As an obvious example, if you see something made by Apple, the design style is usually so clear that it's recognizable without the brand - even in their marketing materials. Even our video (above) is branded!
In a globally distributed world, that sort of brand cohesion is needed to be recognized as a standout in crowded industries.
Crafting A Clear Corporate Image
1 - Corporate Colors
A unified color scheme is one of the basic requirements of consistent branding and corporate imaging.
Using ourselves as an example, 98toGo uses shades of blue - which create an eye-pleasing contrast against the text - along with flashes of green to add flair. By maintaining that across our pages and content, they are all visually linked and "fit in" together.
2 - Logo Placement
Putting your logo on everything you release is vitally important when dealing with online materials. When something can be freely shared, your brand is often the only thing preventing people from claiming those materials for them.
So remember to always watermark your slide shows, videos, and so forth, while carrying on your color schemes. That reinforces your ownership of the materials, even if they're being seen via a different website.
3 - Style Guides.
A style guide is a list of grammatical rules to follow, vocabulary to use or not use, tones of voice, and other elements of writing that would otherwise be at a writer's discretion. This creates a constant "voice" for publications, and it's a valuable technique for online marketers.
If one blogger is using a very casual voice and another's work reads like a textbook, it creates an obvious stylistic mismatch. A single document establishing the voice of your company, keeps your writing style unified.
4 - Employee Communication.
Finally, remember that corporate appearances are a team effort. Don't simply tell staff what to do; explain the philosophy and reasons behind your corporate imaging. A worker who understands your company's underlying reasoning will be able to recreate those stances in their own communications.
98toGo is dedicated to advancing the state-of-the-art in online marketing. For a free consultation, just tell us where your business is headed!