I got it From My Mama; A Blog about Assets

Disclaimer: This blog sadly has nothing to do with my mother or a song by will.i.am. However, this blog will be about assets – the good and the horrible.

Social Strategy for a company includes when to post, what channels, making sure the post is aligned with the mission and goals of the overarching company. What I will focus on today covers the expression of social strategy through assets, copy, and tone.

Assets

What is an asset you ask? According to Jeff Bullas, a business and digital world blogger, an asset is “any web presence that makes it easy for customers and prospects to find you and engage with you” on your social media pages and even blogs. Assets I am talking about today specifically include photos, videos, and gifs. Yet, many things can be considered as an asset to a company. Assets vary throughout social channel and campaign. Twitter needs longer, horizontal assets. Instagram needs assets that are able to fit into a square crop. Facebook has a recommended sizes for the profile photo, cover photo, and normal pictures. Banner ad and side ads need their own cuts and video and gifs may have time and size requirements.  Also for advertising, companies can use carousels of pictures which must be strategically arranged to determine which pops up first.  Publishing good assets is a strength a brand may hold because the asset is often a company’s first impression to a consumer.

This is an example of a good asset

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compared to a horrible asset:

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Both posts were published this summer (2017) and there are some basic expectations for companies posting assets. They are typically clear and representative of the product and convey the messages of the company while driving return on investments.

The first picture was posted by PUMA on their Facebook page. It was taken in high definition, edited, cropped and fit into the screen to show the entire product. It even offers a mix of color so the consumer has a glance into their options. You can tell how carefully the products were placed and arranged. With a PUMA watermark purposefully placed in the top right corner.

On the other hand, the pizza was posted as a tweet by Dominos Pizza. This photo is fairly low quality, it crops the pizza in an awkward way, and the bacon on the pizza looks burnt! Also, there is no indication that it is a Dominos Pizza beside the fact that it was posted by their account. There is no watermark or clear label. The company’s logo could be used to show a more authentic image.

Not only did I notice this as I scrolled through my twitter feed, but many other followers of Dominos reacted similarly to myself.

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Customers jumped on the opportunity to share their personal experiences with Domino’s serving “crumbles” and how disgusted they were by the look of the pizza. This poor post caused an overwhelmingly negative reaction from users. Most replies on Twitter were either disgust at that specific pizza or their own disappointing story about a Dominos experience. The chain reaction of negative responses would not have happened with a high-quality, appealing, and pleasing picture. With an asset looks are everything because the image draws the attention of the consumer.

Companies should be very careful about the type of assets they post. Good social strategies specific to assets include; having a variety of assets (laydowns, action shots, close up product shots), incorporating user-generated content (UGC), using ambassadors and influencers, and using clear, crisp images.

Copy & Tone

An asset can tell a story on its own, but generally, it is accompanied by copy. Copywriters have the second chance a company to sell a consumer on a product. The tone of the company’s voice dictates the type of copy used for a post. Some companies have written out explicit rules for their copywriters, while others have unwritten expectations.

A company like CVS uses lots of exclamation marks and emojis to get their followers excited. They encourage people to comment on their pictures with stories, opinions, ideas, and recipes. In the image below, they ask a question to their customers and thank the users for their contributions.

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Conversely, Nike maintains a serious and focused tone. Users are intended to be inspired and encouraged to reach their full physical potential.

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You can see that Nike does not respond to their customers in the same way that CVS does, but that is because that is not the tone of Nike. Most retail companies save their engagements for customer service inquiries. CVS is known for being an interactive health brand for the whole family.

The Whole Picture

How to represent a brand well is pictured below; this asset has strong tone and copy.Facebook-timeline-cover-on-success-Success-is-earned-by-Nike.jpg

Social media creates a persona for a company, this persona is what consumers need be able to relate to. These attitudes displayed by that persona of a company are reflected throughout all social platforms. Companies need consistent branding and messaging to show to the general public who/what they are. Assets, copy, and tone that are uniform with the voice of a company are crucial to firmly dominate a competitive position in the marketplace.

However, if companies get too comfortable with their homogeneous messaging they run the risk of losing their customers to braver and more exciting brands. It very well could be harming Nike that they are not responding to the popular comments on their Facebook page. Overall, the social strategy of a brand represents a company through assets, copy, and tone so carrying that out the right way is the key to success. So Dominos, Just Do It.

 

 

8 comments

  1. It’s very interesting to think of digital assets in the same way that companies think of all their other intangibles….especially thinking that OUR photos and posts are technically assets to SM sites.

    Anyway, I think you made a very interesting point about the way you can really view a brand ‘personality’ through the way it portrays itself on social media…similar to how we portray ourselves. Additionally you picked some very solid contrasting examples from your own newsfeed.

    I’m not sure that I totally agree with your last point though. I agree that it’s important to avoid all of your ads looking similar and blending into the background, but you should be careful not to alienate or confuse customers with ads that don’t resonate with the brand image.

  2. kdphilippi18 · ·

    Interesting post! I think you did a great job outlining why strategic pictures, copy and tone are key for brands on social media. I completely agree and I also think it is extremely important that brands make sure they are engaging their audiences differently depending on the different social media platforms. Audiences on different channels might be slightly different so it is necessary for a brand’s tone, copy, and pictures to also change. For example, sometimes the audience on Facebook skews older so the tone and copy should reflect that where on Snapchat or Instagram it is younger. Paying attention to the types of consumers on each platform and how to best engage them are key to successful social media personas for brands. I wonder if Nike’s posts across the different platforms have noticeable differences?

  3. cmackeenbc · ·

    Cool post! It is crazy to think about how much the term “assets” has evolved, even in the past decade. A company’s social media strategies are suddenly everything–and it has been interesting to see how brand image has quite literally manifested itself in corporate media accounts. I think an important element of this is the personification of the brand that social media requires. With brands like CVS who respond to customers, the voice sounds as though you are talking to a neighbor or family friend. Nike, on the other hand, takes the stance of celebrity by refusing to personally engage with commenters. Though the strategies are different, they seem to fit each brand well. I am curious to know if you have seen the recent Jimmy John’s twitter account controversy…definitely entertaining if you have the time to check it out!

  4. mashamydear · ·

    Echoing desmonco’s thoughts above, I really enjoyed your extension of assets to photos, videos, gifs, art, etc. I don’t think many people think of content on social media as assets, but the companies that publish content on their social media platforms definitely have ownership and the right to use. I also never thought about social media managers as copywriters, so it’s cool that you’re putting digital assets and all of its dimensions into perspective! The people that decide the caption very much do what copywriters do, that is create promotional material in various shapes and forms. I was a little nervous about reading your blog post because it sounded quite technical, but I think you explained things very well!

  5. magicjohnshin1 · ·

    First off, awesome post! Super interesting to read about how digital assets are viewed. The first two pictures were awesome examples to really illustrate what it means to be a digital asset. It clearly distinguishes what good and bad advertisements/assets are. It’s super cool to see the personality that each company takes as well from CVS to Nike. It’s awesome how they use their asset to really define what kind of brand image and personality they want to take on.

  6. katieInc_ · ·

    Great post! I think it is so interesting to compare the way brands convey their missions, communicate with their consumers, and market their products. I agree with your closing point that to be successful, brands must continuously check in to their social strategy. How can we know that their posts are conveying their brand in the best way possible?

  7. Interesting post. As brands move into social platforms the central control that they once had over their brand image and messaging can easily be lost. This is especially true when the expect employees of that organization, even those outside of the marketing department, to be ambassadors for the brand. Assets like the ones you show-up front are perfect examples of this taking place. You have to wonder who snapped that Dominos pizza picture and whether marketing new it was going to hit the account in such a way.

    I know at my organization we have a series of guidelines that are published to help employees create powerful assets. These guidelines even go as far as to describe the “voice” of the brand and provide instructions for the use of imagery. Might sound overbearing, but it does create consistency across all of or channels and assets.

  8. Cool blog post. It would be very interesting to learn more about options that non-profits and smaller companies have to curate really engaging assets. I manage the BC Bands accounts and our biggest challenge is putting together timely and professional looking assets because we have few resources that will bring our media up to the “brand standard” we hold for ourselves.

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