Creating a Brand Reference Document

Creating a Brand Reference Document

Do you have a brand reference document? A document that references all your website colours, fonts and image preferences?

When I first heard about this concept, I wasn’t entirely sure a document like this would be useful, but, as a virtual assistant, I often need all of this information when I begin working with a new client. If a new client has this information, it saves me loads of time, I just need to refer to one document.

What kind of information is needed for a reference document like this? Here are some ideas:

  • Your logo and logo variations
  • Your website favicon
  • Colour palette – primary and secondary, if applicable
  • Fonts – primary and secondary, if applicable
  • Image examples and any special instructions for choosing new images (for example, I have a client who has 5 main brand colours, all interchangeable, and another that only wants spiritual-type images)
  • Patterns/Textures

 A brand reference document should be no more than one page long, stored (and backed up) with any of your website/brand documents. 

 

Benefits of a Brand Reference Document

Keeping it short and sweet, and in a place you will remember will make it easy to send it to someone you’ve hired to help with your social media images or website branding.

Every website has, or should have, a general feel or flow, and that feel/flow should carry over to your social media. I talked about the importance of branding in this blog post, but the basic idea is to keep your online presence consistent throughout.

This reference document will make it easy to create and maintain a consistent brand, long after you’ve created your brand. It can save you time and money in the long run to have a document like this.

If you don’t already have something like this in your tool kit, I can work with you to create one. Here is an example, it’s my own brand reference document:

 

 

Of course, your brand reference guide doesn’t have to be this fancy!

Basically, you’ll want to have your logo, font names and any HTML colour codes, and it can just be a text document. The point is to have all the information in one single document, so that you can access it whenever you need it.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about this!

 

What would you do with an extra ten hours a month (or a week)? Book a free consultation call with me and let's talk!

Social Media: Management vs. Support

Social Media: Management vs. Support

Social media management and social media support are not the same thing. Do you know the difference?

 

Social Media Management

Managing social media involves an in-depth review of a social media account, developing and implementing a strategy to build growth. It involves careful monitoring and tweaking in order to gain the achieved growth that a business desires.

A social media manager has taken courses and understands the science behind social media efforts. They work hard to stay in front of algorithm changes with each platform and understand how best to implement changes to the strategy in order to beat the algorithms.

This is not to say that results are guaranteed, and it also doesn’t mean being on the first page of Google overnight. Social media is slow, unfortunately, and does require a “basting” period, and consistency. What works for some platforms or businesses won’t necessarily work for others. Even if two businesses are the same and run by the same manager.

 

Social Media Support

Support means just that: support.

Keeping an eye on analytics on any platform is just smart business. Efforts need to be measured in order to see which platforms are working and what content is producing the best outcome.

I offer support to my clients by building up consistency. I firmly believe in building up online presence first and foremost. Sharing content from other people, while sharing their original content is key. I also encourage clients to share things like, helpful tips (because I believe in drawing people in with free advice when possible), motivational quotes, along with any upcoming events they will be hosting.

In general, I develop a social media content calendar, one month at a time, and include images, captions, hashtags and links. I also share holiday greetings on their behalf.

I don’t believe VAs should engage with a client’s audience, and here’s why:

No one knows your audience like YOU do. Also, no one knows your BUSINESS like you do.

While it’s easy to like/share/retweet on a client’s behalf, the most important part about social media is BEING social, and I believe that a client should definitely be engaging with their own audience because they know their products/services/audience better than a VA would.

 

Sometimes it’s difficult to know the difference between the two roles, so I really hope this blog post has helped to clear it up.

 

Still have questions? Book a free consultation call with me and let’s talk!

How Important Are Images in Your Social Media?

How Important Are Images in Your Social Media?

One of my favourite tasks, and, most important, is to create images for my clients’ social media posts.

Did you know that posts accompanied by an image are TEN TIMES more likely to garner a response from your audience?

Humans are visual creatures by nature, and we respond more readily to images. Images are everywhere, and you’ll see them in magazines, television, online and in books (didn’t we all enjoy books more when they had pictures in them???).

Images draw the eye in

Clever images hook us. This ‘hooking’ is extremely important because our attention spans last less than 9 seconds (less than a goldfish – think about that…).

The more creative the image, the more likely the engagement from your audience, so it really pays to put some thought into your target audience. Throwing them a little off-guard will intrigue them to click through to your website – which is exactly where you want them, most of the time!

So, whether you’re choosing images (or having your trusty VA create them for you), you want to make sure they’re going to catch someone’s attention. Branded images are even better – and this is a service I offer.

Don’t forget about holidays and special days of the year, either. Just as it’s important to share your product or service, it’s also important to send a gentle message that you’re there. Prove to your audience that you don’t always want something from them.

So, your text posts wishing someone a “Happy Spring” won’t go unnoticed. However, adding an image will make your post stand out – and that, my friends, is exactly what you want.

If you’d like images custom-made for you, book a free consultation call with me and let’s talk about it.

The Power of Testimonials

The Power of Testimonials

When I began my virtual assistant life, I thought no one would hire me because I’d had no testimonials. It’s kind of like that conundrum, you can’t get a job without experience, and you can’t get experience without a job.

Thankfully, I had co-workers who were only too happy to help me out. I received some great testimonials to start me off, and as my business grew, I received more and more.

The reason that testimonials are so important is that they are social currency, it’s a form of proof that you’re as good as you say you are. A good testimonial is worth its weight in gold because it will bring more customers.

Just as testimonials are important for my business, I’ve also recognized how important they are for my clients’ businesses.

Being a creative VA, I often recommend to my clients that they use the testimonials they’ve received and put them out there. When someone says you’re great, you need to share that with the world!

I like to create beautiful testimonial images for my clients and share them via social media. I’ll usually link it back to their website, usually to a services page or a contact page. If they have a testimonial page set up on their website, I’ll direct people to that page by saying. It’s as easy as saying something like, “Click here to read what others have had to say about my services…”

Not everyone is comfortable with asking for testimonials, and I completely understand. It can be tough! But it’s important to have a stack of great testimonials under your belt, especially if you plan on staying in business for a long while. So, bite the bullet, and drop your latest customer a quick email asking if they would mind leaving some feedback. A link to where you’d like them to leave it is also helpful. Good luck!

What would you do with an extra ten hours a month (or a week)? Book a free consultation call with me and let’s talk!

Does social media REALLY help SEO?

Does social media REALLY help SEO?

In many of my client consultation calls, my clients understand that social media is very important to their business, even if they’re not entirely sure of the logistics of how it all works.

One client of mine, when we first began working together, told me that she couldn’t find her business or services within the first 20 pages of Google. We all know that in order to get noticed, you have to be found on Google. Working over the next few months on her social media slowly brought her up through Google’s listings and she now proudly sits on page one.

I say slowly because it’s not an overnight process, by any means. Google goes through each and every web page being published. It’s a long process that can often take several months before you see any progress.

Another client of mine found herself on page four in LinkedIn searches. Within four months of working together, she found herself on page one and emailed me to express her happiness!

These two scenarios clearly show how important social media is, no matter where you want to be found. It takes time, and continuous posting in order to make it happen.

What types of content make it happen, though? Are we just sharing their material and hoping for the best?

No.

Social media works best with an 80/20 rule. Share 80 percent of other people’s content and 20 percent of your own. It doesn’t seem like a lot, does it? With social media, it’s about giving, not taking. So sharing content from others shows good faith, your audience will see that you don’t think it’s all about you.

One fact I cannot stress enough, though, is that social media works best when you’re Being social.

Posting all of these things consistently is great, don’t get me wrong. But social media is about being social. That means you have to interact with your audience. Like, comment, share, retweet – it all matters. Far too many people just share, share, share and not enough interact. And interacting is something that no virtual assistant can do as well as the client him- or herself because no one knows their business as much as they do.

Book a free consultation call with me and we can discuss a plan for your business social media.

How to Create Custom Instagram Highlight Covers

How to Create Custom Instagram Highlight Covers

I love Instagram so much that I have two accounts, one is personal and the other is for business.

I try not to bore my business audience with pictures of my kids or my lunch – I share those types of posts on my personal account. – be warned!

My business account contains inspirational quotes, testimonials from my clients, blog posts and books I’m reading.

Most of us have heard of Instagram stories – where you can share short video clips or photos of your everyday activities and save it to your story for 24 hours. If you have Stories Archive switched on in your settings, you won’t have to save your stories to your phone, Instagram will keep them archived for you. Then you can add these stories to your highlights. (more…)