Your social media handle can make or break your internet presence. A handle is essentially a username that visitors will use to identify other users and businesses online. Once you have identified your business goals and target audience, it is important to begin coming up with a social media handle as soon as possible. The reality is that social media handles go very quickly. As a matter of fact, several hundred accounts just became active on all social media platforms in the time that it took you to read this.
Here is a list of steps to follow when selecting a social media handle for your business accounts:
Aim for consistency
Make sure that the handle you choose is as close to your brand name as possible and is consistent with your online presence on other platforms. Ideally, all your social media handles and domain name should be same. This will allow for better communication with your audience and promote brand recognition. This is beneficial because social media users will not have to think too hard about how to find you on any given platform. Not to mention you can simply place “@brandname” on your banners and business cards. If you cannot secure your brand name as a handle on every platform, be sure that your resulting handle is still one that can be easily recognized as relevant to your brand.
Keep it short and simple
Be sure to keep your handle concise and to the point as it will contribute to a clean and memorable social media branding. A quick and easy-to-type handle will allow your ideal customer to find you faster. If your ideal social media handle is taken, consider using abbreviations or adding in your city name. Refrain from using things like your slogan as a social media handle. Though it may be very relevant to your business, you run the risk of it being too long and too much for your audience to remember. Keep in mind that some platforms such as Twitter have a character limit for your handle.
In addition to creating a handle that is short and simple, make sure that it is also easy to pronounce and spell. Word-of-mouth is one of the most popular ways to generate interest in your social media presence. If no one can pronounce or spell your handle easily, it could be a huge inconvenience to your audience which can harm your social media marketing efforts. While intentional misspellings may look fun (Klosets), they actually make it harder for people to find you on social sites.
Select a handle that stands the test of time
You will want your social media handles to remain relevant now and in the future. It may not always be easy or possible to change your handle once it is set. Choosing a handle that boxes your company into a specific category may not be the best move as it can misinform your audience about your company if you choose to expand your offerings one day. All in all, make sure your handle can grow with your business.
Try to avoid using numbers
It is advised to refrain from using numbers in your social media handle unless numbers are included in your brand name. Usually if a business has numbers in their social media handle, it is because their first choice was taken. However, doing this makes it more difficult to stand out from other accounts with similar names which can cause confusion within your audience.
Once you have a list of possible social media handle ideas, you need to verify if they are available on all your desired platforms. You can do this by going to each platform and searching the account name. However, that can be rather time-consuming if you know that you plan to be active on several platforms. Consider using one of many websites, like Knowem? that allow you to search all social media platforms for your ideal handle in one place.
Once you have successfully found a social media handle that effectively captures your brand and is available on all of your platforms, it is time to go and claim it. Create your social media account, upload your logo as your profile picture, write a compelling bio and link users to your website. Now you are well on your way to begin posting content and creating relationships with your customers.
At trades.org we know all the important social platforms and can create a profile that reflects your business and attracts attention from the most likely potential customers. Our brand management services make social media marketing easy.