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20 Ways to Showcase the Human Side of Your Brand

Emily Miels
by Emily Miels on Dec 11, 2017 3:00:00 PM

When it comes to marketing these days, it’s all about making an emotional connection with your audience. To do that, you need to develop trust, tell meaningful stories, and showcase the human side of your brand. People like to engage with other people, not brands. Brands that see success moving forward are going to be the ones that put humans – their customers, employees, and other advocates – at the core of their marketing strategies. However, doing that isn’t always an easy task. If you want to make your brand seem a little more human online, here are a few ways to do so.  

Put the spotlight on your team members.

Your company is made up of humans! Shocker, right? What better way to show the human side of your brand than to put some focus on the people that work there! Part of telling your brand’s story is sharing the stories and personalities of the people who make your brand special and successful. It not only helps your customers put a face to your business, but it also helps your employees feel more valued and engaged with your company as well.

Try these tips:

1. Use social media to publically acknowledge an employee’s work (and tag them). 

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2. Develop an introductory blog post when a new person joins your staff.

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3. Share and repost informative content from your employees to your brand’s official social accounts.

4. Utilize your team members in company stock photos, videos, and advertising.

5. Sign social posts with the name of the person responding (if multiple people are managing accounts).

Show your customers some love.

Just like your employees are humans, your customers are too! People trust their peers more than brands, so making your customers a key part of your story (and marketing strategy) is an important part of humanizing your brand. Providing opportunities for your customers to engage with your brand on a personal level and soliciting their thoughts, opinions, and feedback regularly helps them feel more appreciated and deepens the emotional tie they have with your business.

Try these tips:

6. Utilize polls on social accounts to let your customers weigh in.

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7. Use a customer's name (whenever possible) when connecting on social media, email, and other online platforms.

8. Solicit and showcase user-generated content.

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Give customers a “behind-the-scenes” look at your company.

When it comes to telling your brand’s story and showcasing the human side of your brand, it’s not all about products and services. By giving customers an inside look at how your company operates, it allows them to connect with your brand on a deeper level by feeling like they a part of your team. They’ll get a better idea of your company culture and whether or not your brand’s values line up with their own. With social media and websites, it’s easier than ever to give people an inside look at what life is like at your company and how your brand operates.

Try these tips:

9. Share photos and video of company happenings on social media.

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10. Go live on Facebook or Instagram during a special event your business is part of. 

11. Utilize the “Stories” features on Snapchat and Instagram to showcase each step of a new project or product in real time. 

Practice what you preach.

We have a word to describe people who say one thing but do another: two-faced. You don’t want to damage customer trust by being hypocritical with your marketing. That’s why it’s so important to make sure how you’re interacting with people online matches how you run your business and how you communicate face-to-face with customers. That means consistent messaging, staying true to brand values across all platforms, and delivering on all promises you make to customers and employees. It also means that everyone – from CEOs on down the ladder – has to be on the same page about company priorities and values.

Try these tips:

12. If your business pushes a message of speed and efficiency, be quick to respond to all phone calls, emails, social mentions and other interactions.

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13. If you boast a “quality over quantity” mentality at your business, focus on dominating one or two social channels rather than spreading yourself thin posting on multiple platforms.

14. If sustainability and eco-friendliness is at the core of the products you sell, showcase the recycling habits, volunteer efforts, and other green initiatives within your company.

Have an awesome “About Us” page.

About Us pages are one of the most frequented pages on any website, according to Moz. That means when someone is interested in your brand, your About Us page can be a way to establish an emotional connection with customers from the get-go and kick start a relationship – if it’s done right. The About Us page should help put a face to your company, give viewers an authentic look at your brand’s story, and entice them to get to know you better. If you haven’t taken a look at your About Us page in a while or put a lot of thought into it, it might be time to give it some love.

Try these tips:

15. Include names, images, blogs, and social usernames of key founders, executives, and employees.

16. Utilize facts, not superlatives. Show your customers that you’re “cutting-edge” or “outstanding,” don’t just tell them.

17. Create visuals and multimedia content that viewers can interact with and relate to.

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Check out the About Us page for Moz, a leader in the marketing industry. It links to co-founder Rand Fishkin’s blog and includes a visually appealing timeline detailing big wins for the company (which serves to support their opening paragraphs and overall brand values). All of that helps viewers put a face to the Moz brand and really understand their personality.

Admit your mistakes and shortcomings.

As the age old saying goes, “Nobody’s perfect.” We’ve all screwed up and been unsure before. Unfortunately, your business is going to make mistakes and fall short sometimes too. While it may be tempting to hide negative reviews and only showcase the positive aspects of your business, a big part of being human (and showing the human side of your brand) is being able to own up to your mistakes. Customers will have a lot more respect and trust for brands that apologize when they mess up, admit when they don’t know something, and work to improve, than for those who continue on like nothing happened.

Try these tips:

18. Find the humor and laugh off your mistakes alongside your customers.

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19. Own it when you’re trying something new (rather than pretend like you’re an expert).

20. Respond publicly to all complaints on social, then work to continue engagement one-on-one and resolve the situation privately via message, phone, or email.

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Of course, these are just a few of the ways to give your brand a little more of that human face when interacting online. When you start thinking of your online efforts in a more people-centric way, it helps make developing engaging content and interacting with customers a little easier (and more effective). Overall, just be relatable and be consistent with your efforts and messaging. In the end, remember we’re all just people trying to navigate through this crazy digital world.

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Emily Miels
Written by Emily Miels
Emily focuses on crafting the stories that really speak to our clients' target audiences, to attract, engage and convert them. From website copy to blog posts, social updates to landing pages, Emily does it all (and she does it really, really well)!

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