The fourth and final day of Social Media Week NYC was all about branding. We all want our brand to succeed and be first in the minds of consumers. Read the five tips below to learn how to grow your company’s brand!

1. Create a sense of community. In a class called “How Today’s Top Brands Breed Loyalty and Fanaticism”, executives from cult brands like SoulCylce and Refinery29 provided insight on how a sense of belonging is at the heart of a successful brand. With positive experiences, cult brands find ways to bring consumers together, making it hard for them to leave. Once a brand achieves a sense of belonging, consumers can tap into the rituals and environment of the brand and are more likely to remain loyal to it.

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2. Go where other brands do not. While it’s important for your brand’s message to be consistent, you must remember to explore new content and ideas, and go in a direction where other brands do not. While there may be instances where ideas fail, brands should not be concerned about failing. They should be passionate about the direction that their innovation takes them in. By being unique and using a different approach, your brand remains relevant in the minds of consumers.

3. Give consumers a voice through social media. According to executives from Crowdtap, 75% of brand enthusiasts say they want to submit ideas and feedback. As a result, brands should place their focus on the people and put consumers at the heart of their business strategies. Social media provides a place for this. Brands should be moving to an open system model where they incorporate the consumer’s valued opinion rather than just trying to sell them a product.

4. Use proper imagery in a campaign. While headlines and the text themselves are important when it comes to content, the featured image is just as- if not more important. When choosing an image for your brand’s ad, ask yourself the following questions: Does this image capture the most remarkable or surprising part of the story or ad? Does it trigger an emotional response? Does this image make me want more and need more? How would I react to this image showing up in my newsfeed? If you have a positive response to all of these questions, then you’re on the right track and this image will most likely capture the eye of the consumer, making them more inclined to click on your ad. Keep in mind the size and appearance of your image as well- since social media is accessed on a number of devices and platforms, it is crucial that the image that looks aesthetically pleasing across the board.

5. Be more interested than interesting. We have stressed before that it’s more appealing to consumers when brands listen and speak with them, rather than at them. With the endless amount of content that’s available on the internet, it is so important to connect with consumers and make them want to share your brand’s idea or story, whether by word of mouth or word of post. This consumer engagement creates empathy and establishes trust between the consumer and your brand, and is ultimately how your business will spread.

That’s a wrap for Social Media Week 2015! For more information on our Social Media Marketing Campaigns and other packages that we offer, visit us at ferociousmedia.com