How to Determine The Kind of Image You Want to Project and The Tone You Want To Use Online

By on March 22, 2011

It’s time to begin your long-awaited social media campaign – but before you do, you need to decide what kind of image you want to project into cyberspace. This largely depends on the tone that you’ll be using for your business.

Certain tones will help to elevate you and establish you as a leader in your field, while others could be in bad taste and will tarnish your online reputation. Knowing which to use and which to lose, is a process every business has to go through before sending out their streams of conversation on every social media platform.

Recognize The Tone of Your Chosen Industry

Ever wonder why accountants aren’t very funny, and why marketers speak in a salesy way? They each abide by a specific tone that helps others identify who they are and what they do online.

The tone of a 140 character micro blog for example, can be funny, witty, sarcastic, serious, salesy or straight to the point – depending on your intention and chosen field.

While you might want to distinguish yourself from other accountants in your field by being funny – remember that your clients aren’t looking for a joker, they’re looking for someone serious, analytical and exceptional with numbers. Jokes might hurt your future relationships before they have a chance to blossom online.

It’s best to stick to your industry standard – creative career choices can be creative – the more straight-laced career choices need to be careful of being too ‘out-there’ in their social media strategies.

Keep These Points in Mind:

  • How do you want your clients to perceive you?
  • Will you be able to maintain this tone indefinitely?
  • Do you want to spice up your tone online to get more follows?
  • The internet is your cyber-resume – are you proud if it?
  • Is your tone credible and believable?
  • Would it be better to be innovative instead of following the crowd?

Uniform Goals You’ll Want to Consider

All businesses on the internet want to achieve a certain level of recognition for what they do and how they serve their clients. Develop your online reputation with market leadership as your end goal. In order to achieve this, you’ll need to carefully weigh up your choices when deciding what your online image will be.

What will your businesses voice sound like? What images will you allow, and not allow on your pages? What links and content are allowed? These are considerations you need to take into account before you begin.

The last thing you want is for a raunchy image to appear on one of your daily blogs – and oops! There goes all that credibility you’ve been building for the past 6 months.

Always be professional, even if you’re relaxed and friendly and stay positive when writing. Ask yourself the hard questions – like how important is it to separate your personal and professional persona online? Mean what you say and be genuine about it, and people will take you seriously no matter what you decide to use to further your online business reputation.

Can you sum up your online tone in one word? List it, along with your business name below!

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
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