The essence of design as a form of communication and utility is timeless, but the face of design has changed drastically with the times.
The difference between now and then is the presence of social media and its ability to serve as an advertising platform.
Social media opens up a whole new arena for brands to market themselves, and this encompasses a plethora of challenges and opportunities.
Brands like Blackberry and MySpace which are unable to keep up with such changes can only lose out newer brands like Apple and Facebook. And SMEs can leverage on the exposure that social media gives to connect directly with their audience.
And this connection is most directly done through – yes, you guessed it – design and visuals!
How should your design and branding come together to make your brand resilient and relentless? How should you diligently keep up with design trends to stay ahead of the competition?
Embrace Change: Stay at the forefront of digitalisation and be relentless in your pursuit of learning
In this age, advertising platforms are ever changing and unpredictable. In order to continue gaining customers and staying afloat, companies need to learn to adapt to new platforms such as social media.
People these days use multiple social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more. Brands need to learn to keep up their presence on most of these platforms in order to compete with the ever-growing market.
With these social media platforms, there also exists the best way to utilise them in order to get the highest number of views and shares.
According to Sprout Social, posting at around 9 to 10 Am on Facebook during weekdays allows for the highest amount of engagement with followers, while for Instagram, optimal times are around 10 to 11 AM on Fridays. For other social media platforms, optimal times vary due to the different platforms’ user demographics.
Videos primarily capture more engagement than static posts, and simple and clear design always triumphs.
Hence, in order for brands to maintain their relevance in today’s age, they need to maintain an awareness of different social media platforms’ design and consumer trends and take full advantage of them.
Be Consistent: Ensure consistent branding and visuals across all comms and assets for the most memorable marketing impact
Consistency is the key for your brand to be easily recognised across various platforms, be it on social media or advertisements. When the brand’s items or logos maintain the same colour schemes, messages, these would leave an impression on consumers and allow them to recall the brand with ease, establishing a solid brand identity.
According to Techipedia, brands which make use of consistent marketing strategies are up to 20% more valued than its other counterpars. An example of consistent branding and design success to emulate would be McDonald’s.
Based on our observations, it is easily recognisable due to its catchphrase “I’m Lovin’ it”, the cheerful tune being played whenever there is a McDonald’s advertisement, and its consistent use of red, yellow and white for its logo. After all this time, people have a sense of familiarity whenever they see the McDonald’s logo, and this encourages them to keep revisiting it.
A logo’s style and ability to appeal to its target audience are also key to the brand’s success and recognisability.
Aside from visual consistency, it is also important for brands to keep to a consistent and predictable schedule while posting on social media platforms.
According to lemonlight, brands on Facebook should post minimally three times per week. Posting more or lesser could potentially cause a drop in the number of fans of your social media page. Content on social media moves very fast, hence posts go obsolete very quickly. In order to stay at the forefront of everyone’s screens, it is important to post consistently. And with the optimal visuals!
Keeping these in mind, it is important to note that being consistent both visually and online is essential for brands to maintain their presence.
Be dependable and personable – always keep the target audience in mind and design for what they need; not what you think they need
After maintaining a consistent presence on multiple social media platforms, it is important to dish out products or information that your target audience need and are the most receptive to.
If a company doesn’t give their audience what they want, then maintaining a consistent presence on platforms they visit would not work to its best.
After all, scrolling past advertisements on social media requires just the flick of a thumb. In order to really catch the eye of your audience, you need to be aware of what type of content your audience is the most receptive to.
For example, if you are posting on Instagram, it would be useful to track the number of likes or comments for a particular type of post in order to find out what your target audience likes the most.
Continuing to do this would fine tune the content your brand puts out in order to get the highest number of people sharing your posts, growing your brand’s social media presence even more.
It’s Looking Bullish
In this day and age, it is fairly difficult to navigate through all the various social media platforms for brands to maintain a consistent social media presence in this volatile market.
However, brands that manage to accomplish this feat are rewarded with a growing fan base which is essential to their success. Consistency is key, but so is the type of content being produced. Through hard work, one will be able to overcome all these challenges just like the diligent ox!