Experiencing widespread brand success without the benefit of social media – that’s about as probable as building a snowman without snow. Today, I’m talking about how a brand identity strategy that employs social media can build your brand using the momentum and building power of the snowball effect.

As you develop your brand identity strategy, How to Build a Brand insists that you answer the following question: What is your version of success? Answers will vary of course, but if yours has anything to do with consumers seeking out your brand, or customers coming to you with money to spend, we have the formula.

In the past, loads of money and time had to be spent in order to get significant exposure for your brand. There were few methods available for tracking how many people were exposed to your brand and how they responded to it, and only those brands with large marketing budgets could afford spray-and-pray hyper-exposure methods. Furthermore, these methods were never as effective as personal recommendations.

Thanks to the modern branding sensation that is social media, you can get all the benefits of mass-exposure marketing without the downfalls of old-fashioned methods. Social media is free (with the exception of a modest time investment), and it carries with it the power of compounded referrals.

Snowballiing: a Social Media Brand Identity Strategy

In order to build your brand identity, you must put your brand in front of as many ideal clients as possible. Not every person who encounters your brand will be an ideal client, but your ideal clients may be included in their contact lists.

Consider this example: If you have 1,000 followers on a social media channel and 10 of those people share your status update…and if each of those ten has 1,000 followers, your brand will have the potential to be seen by 100,000 people.

Enter the snowball effect.

Think about how you might go about creating a behemoth snowball.


Ben Earwicker, www.garrisonphoto.org

  • First, you will gather some snow and fashion it into a tight, compact ball. This is the creation of your social media status update.
  • Then, you’ll roll it around on the ground, gathering more snow and causing it to grow to the size of a large beach ball. This is your engagement with your existing audience – built with your hands-on, prompt, responsive comments and your sharing of useful information. This increases your post’s interest. It exposes it to more people – those who follow your followers and who are witness to the stimulating conversation.
  • Next, when you have done all you can do – when the snowball is too large to push with your own power – you send it down a hill, to roll on its own and gather more and more snow, until its size and momentum are massive. This is sharing on the part of your intrigued followers. If even one person shares your status update, it increases the surface area of your message, picking up new attention. Your campaign rolls faster, and is more productive, with each revolution. It takes on a life of its own.

If you have built your brand identity strategy around the hopes of your social media posts going viral, you’re close. I prefer to think of social media in terms of the snowball effect. It demonstrates the power of social media with its ever-growing, sticky surface area and it ever-mounting momentum. Plus, who wouldn’t rather build a snowball than catch a virus?

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For further help or advice on building your brand identity strategy with social media, please get in touch with us on [email protected] You can also get your daily branding tips at www.facebook.com/BrandExpertTips.

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