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In the digital era today, so much of our lives are lived through the computer screen. Everything from checking the news to shopping are done online, making it increasingly difficult to ensure that your brand is going to make a real connection with your audience. So, if your customers are engaging mostly online, why aren’t you? A whopping 80% of customers are more likely to purchase products or services from brands that they follow on their social media channels—make sure you create a stand out brand so that you are one of those accounts.

Companies like Nike, a brand that currently has one of the biggest followings on Instagram, are constantly developing new tactics to interact with their audience. Their visuals are consistently gorgeous, their copy endlessly engaging, and they maintain these standards across each of their multiple platforms. Even though their imagery often has different subjects, it all has the “essence” of Nike attached to it.

So the question is: how do you create a stand out brand like this? From design input to the best ways to implement social media, here are our five tips for creating stand out brand content that can help you break through the screen and gain a larger audience.

Be Everywhere

With so many different outlets to hit, your brand must be able to adapt to all of them. 99% of people who share through social media are sharing via multiple platforms. Additionally, the average adult spends more than five hours online everyday, with 22% of that time being spent on social media channels, 21% of that time searching online, and another 20% just reading various forms of content. This means you have several chances to catch the attention of potential customers. Make sure to expand into all forms of media. A Facebook page is great, but make sure you’re actually producing content on it regularly. Post on Instagram, interact with customers on Twitter, or start a blog. In fact, companies with an active blog report 97% more leads than companies without.

You need to work with your platform, not around it. For example, posting a cool image of a new product with a snappy caption may be perfect for Instagram, but if you want to display a more in-depth informational post, LinkedIn is the place to do so. This way, you publish a good volume of content for your audience, but are doing so within the context of the platform. Customers are not going to follow you on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter if they can follow just one and not miss out. For customers, hitting that unfollow button is way easier than committing to follow a new company–give them a reason to follow you by creating stand out brand content.

Be Flexible, Yet Consistent

This may sound like the vague message on your fortune cookie, but it’s actually a very simple concept. The purpose of creating a stand out brand is to engage an audience and make them feel something for your company. It’s not enough for them to like your product, they want to know your brand personality. Having this connection with a consumer can be the deciding factory for them between you and a competitor.

You need to make sure that your brand is not only posted everywhere, but that its personality is posted everywhere as well. Posting to four different social medias is useless if there is no consistency behind those posts. Having a beautiful Instagram is great, but if your Twitter and Facebook posts appear corporate or robotic in comparison, your followers are going to sense this disconnect and act accordingly. Doing this will help establish brand trust with your audience.

Not only does your design need to express your brand, but your words do as well. While graphics are important, don’t focus so much on creating attractive content that you forget to actually create worthwhile content. The majority of a brand’s image stems from what it is saying and how it is saying it. Your copy is just as important as your design and should be treated with the same care.

Every stand out brand needs to have a voice that is representative of their personality. If you’re working with a personality more on the wild side, like Moschino for example, your copy shouldn’t read like a Dickens novel. Don’t be afraid to bend or break the rules of grammar in favor of speaking in the vernacular of your target audience. Copy can be tricky, so it’s important to take the time to really work with your words to make sure that they will connect your brand to audience. If you need more help with this, you can read advice from some of the great copywriters here.

Own Your Brand’s Visual Elements

Nowadays, it’s all minimalist this, and modern that. Yes, that clean Swiss look is all the rage right now. However, it’s also all over every website and blog you can find. You can have a clean, sophisticated design without having your website look like it was made from a template. For example, our website has a very clean, easy to navigate interface, but we’ve filled it with our favorite orange spot color and other elements that highlight our personality. Taking characteristics of a certain trend can be find as long as you edit that trend to really make it your own.

It’s also important to protect your brand’s personality from being eaten up by design trends. You have to make your branding attractive but representative. If your brand personality is wild and messy, take risks with that in your design. You have to be sure that you are picking a color scheme and type treatment that works with your brand, because what is popular right now may actually be a detriment to your brand message. The most beautiful design in the world will only serve as a block in the experience you’re trying to create if it’s not in line with the company’s identity.

Maintain Relationships to Create a Stand Out Brand

Having great branding is nothing if you can’t maintain a good relationship with your customers– this comes from excellent customer service. You should always have a way for your clients to get in touch with you or someone who would be able to assist them with any issues they may have. While email, social media, and phone calls are popular customer service routes, however you choose to go about it will build a commitment to your customers that will only serve to benefit you in the future. A customer who had an unfortunate experience with your customer service options is not going to support your brand, no matter how pretty it is.

In addition to having positive communication with your customers, it’s important to have constant communication with them as well. The sale doesn’t end after they’ve paid for your product or service. In this day and age, 88% of consumers look to online reviews to determine the quality of a business as a way to determine if they are going to do business with said company. Harnessing the power of online reviews is challenging, but pays off in the end– there are many methods you can use to encourage your customers to leave an online review. Sort out which method will best work for your particular audience and implement that into your daily marketing routine.

Experiment With Your Own Mold

Visual branding is a lot more intricate than just having a logo and color scheme. Your logo should not only work on its own, but should be able to be altered and changed to adjust to any future needs. Remember that you never want your marketing to feel stale.

Take, for example, Saks Fifth Avenue: they’re famous for their exceptional identity element manipulation. They pulled apart their logo in order to create a well designed pattern to be used on shopping bags, stationary, etc. Despite the logo itself having been fragmented, it is still easily identifiable as a part of the Saks Fifth Avenue brand.

This type of flexibility allows a brand to introduce fresh identity elements without having to go through a complete redesign. It also creates more dynamic visuals to catch the eye of followers or attract new customers. Your brand’s post is in a competition with the other 27,000,000 pieces of content that are shared everyday, so being able to mix it up every once in a while will be instrumental to keeping customers engaged.

On the internet, you’re nothing more than a needle in a haystack that no one is going out their way to hunt for. With content flying out at users from all directions, the key is to make sure that yours is the one that catches their eye, and once you have their attention, keep them coming back for more. After all, interesting content and a consistent brand presence is one of the top three reasons that consumers follow certain brands on social media. It’s also important to make sure you analyze the successfulness of your tactics and build upon what’s working for you. What is typically considered a “sure fire” tactic may not be a method that your target audience aligns with. Often times the most outrageous marketing methods have been known to work for an equally outrageous target audience.

Your business is built on a unique foundation of values, and it’s the characteristics of those values that are going to ultimately bring in your loyal followers. Know of another stand out brand that has mastered memorable brand identity? Let us know below!