It only takes one-tenth of a second for us to judge someone and make a first impression. That’s pretty quick! What does that mean for your social media page? It means that new viewers don’t even have the time to notice all the details of your amazing pictures or read your outstanding descriptions that they already have an opinion about the profile you’ve worked so hard on. Your perfectly chosen hashtags may get you more likes on a few photos but not very much more followers… That can be harsh.
“You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
Fortunately, there are plenty ways to control your social media image. It’s up to you to put your best assets forward if you want to be get more traction.
Here are the 5 sections you need to focus on in order to get positive attention and tip the balance on your side.
1. PROFILE AND COVER PICTURE
Your profile picture shouldn’t represent only one facet of your business. It should represent it in its entirety. It should be timeless and easily associated to you.
This is why I strongly suggest an image where the logo is prominent as opposed to a photo of a place or a product. “A logo is a visual cornerstone of a company’s brand. Your company’s identity is visually expressed through its logo, which, along your company’s name, is one of the main things that makes your business memorable. Apple, Google, Yahoo, each one of these companies has a distinctive logo that a large percentage of people would be able to describe without seeing.”
Think about it. When you scroll down a feed, you see an image with a name before each post. Having your logo as image will reinforce the association between that symbol and the company name. And also, over time people will get attached to your brand. They will recognize you through their feed and be more receptive to your message. The mere-exposure effect suggests that people tend to develop a preference for things merely because they are familiar with them.
This is the time to get highly visual. This is like your personal advertising billboard so go ahead and be both creative and effective. You can convey a feeling, promote the values of your company, your website, your products, a contest, your other social medias, etc.
Needless to say that all of your images must be High Quality and respect the best format for the social media of your choice.
2. NAME, USERNAME AND ALTERNATE NAME
Just put your complete business name without any symbol, abbreviation, number or extra designation to it. Keep it simple. If your page represents a celebrity, public figure, sports team, media or entertainment, you may be eligible for a verification badge. This will give you more credibility and authority. Please refer to the rules applicable to each social media. Here is an example of these rules for Facebook.
Your username should always contain your business name or a very close derivative. It should also be simple, easy to write and easy to remember. This is what your fans will recognize you for. This is what they’ll write in a search bar if they are trying research you, and this is how they will refer to you, so pay an extra attention to it.
Example: www.facebook.com/burgerking or @BurgerKing
On many social media platforms, you can also have an alternate name. It can be below your username or in brackets. Many companies have a username that isn’t exactly the same as their business name and most of the time, they spell it out better in this section.
Example: @HustleGrindCo (Hustle & Grind)
An alternate name can also be an excellent opportunity to quickly allow a first time visitor to know exactly what your business is about. To do so, put a descriptive group of words in this section.
Example: @SaifStudio (Saif Wedding Photography)
3. DESCRIPTION AND URL
This is the “elevator pitch” of your page. You shouldn’t stop at explaining who or what you are. You should also briefly tell why someone should follow you. What is the value that your account brings? What’s in it for them?
You got a few words to explain what you do and why you’re worth being followed so make the most of it. Don’t hesitate to use compelling formatting (emoji, capitalization, separate paragraphs) if it fits with your identity!
I suggest reading “Creating an authentic brand that resonates” before writing your description.
Below the description, there is usually a section where you should add the url of your choice to increase traffic and conversion. Here is a perfect place you can encourage people to visit a specific Web page, a featured product or a current contest.
4. SOCIAL PROOF
A verification badge is a check mark that is next to your page if it represents a celebrity, public figure, sports team, media or entertainment. To get one, you need to meet the eligibility criteria set by the social media in question and send them a request. This makes a really good first impression as it shows authority and demonstrates that it’s an official page.
NUMBER OF FOLLOWERS
Your number of followers might exactly be what convinces one more person to follow you. “If everyone does it, I’ll do it too.” It’s a cultural phenomenon known as the bandwagon effect. So never stop adopting new tactics and strategies that will help you gain more fans.
5. GENERAL LOOK
COLORS, FONTS, AND THEMES
Last but not least, the appearance of your page can be very enticing or on the contrary very dissuading. Remember, people will decide at a glance whether they like your profile or not. One simple way to have an attractive one is to keep everything similar:
- COLORS: Some people do all their pictures black and white, others like them all with the earth tone color scheme. If all the pictures look alike, the profile looks esthetically better.
- FONTS: Try to keep a consistency in the fonts you use. It will look less eclectic.
- THEMES: Choose a theme and stick to it. If your theme is coffee, try to show coffee on many frames in different original angles and styles. You can have a wide variety of images while keeping your theme very present and noticeable. So keep it simple and consistent.
These tricks can be valuable to you whether you have a business or personal brand. As an individual, making a great online first impression is more important than ever. Like Patrick Stump (Fall Out Boys) says, first impressions are rarely made in person nowadays: “You go to a job interview, and they’ll probably Google you. It’s a shame – people should play it a little closer to the chest as far as what information they release to the world.”
Let me know what you think about these key points to focus on to make a powerful social media first impression.
I’d love to know what do you notice more when you go on social media page and what makes you like it or not.