Is it just me or has Phillip Schofield been around since the dawn of time? From his days hanging with Gordon the Gopher to his daily appearances on This Morning, the man’s appeared on TV more times than I’ve had hot dinners. And as if that’s not enough, he’s taken to social media like a fish to water, reportedly announcing that Snapchat is his favourite platform. Phil couldn’t be more down with the kids than if he flossed his way up the street wearing joggers and a choker.
Phil even hit the headlines recently for flashing a cheeky snap of his bum on the platform – a move worthy of a Kardashian. Maybe Phil has a thing or two to teach brands about staying relevant… now in his mid-50s, he certainly doesn’t look like he’s going anywhere, anytime soon.
Phillip Schofield – man of the people
One charming Twitter user posted: “Did @Schofe just actually get his a*** out on Snapchat, what a bloke.”
Another went for out-and-out adoration: “@Schofe snapchat is the best thing since sliced bread.”
My own exhaustive research uncovered YouGov polls that reveal those who like Phillip Schofield far outweigh those who dislike him, and that his fans describe him as likeable, entertaining and down-to-earth.
So, before brands start plastering their derrieres all over their social channels, maybe they should look at how they can project these attributes to their audience. It’s working for Phil, after all.
How to make your audience like you
When we think of likeable people, we don’t tend to think of those who doggedly pursue us. We think of those who attract us, who talk to us and make us feel like we’re appreciative of their attention.
With 94% of respondents to a Gensler engagement survey revealing they would be highly likely to recommend a brand they were emotionally engaged with and 75% of consumers saying they make decisions based on their emotions, making the time to engage with your audience, working out what they want and devising solutions to their problems is of the utmost importance.
Phil himself revealed to Closer magazine that he often engages with his followers on Snapchat, sometimes in the form of a competition, a shout-out, or even a personal message to a few lucky fans.
How to make your brand entertaining
Phil has been entertaining the nation since we were knee high to a grasshopper – there are even lengthy blog posts and videos dedicated to how this man is a king amongst TV presenters. Brands can only dream of such high esteem in the eyes of their followers. He also often looks like he’s having a bloody good laugh, frequently dissolving into giggles with co-host Holly Willoughby if they fluff their lines on This Morning.
Even when you’re writing about the driest of topics, you can still make your content fun to read or watch. Tell an engaging story, use a conversational tone, and drop in interesting hypothetical examples to make a point. You could even add a few well-chosen GIFs, memes or other engaging graphics to keep your readers interested. In short, be as creative as possible, as long as it’s the sort of thing your audience will appreciate.
FYI: references to pop culture or topical issues to illustrate a point often go down a treat…
How to keep your brand down-to-earth
Unpretentious and relatable, that’s Schofield in a nutshell. Whether he’s rocking up to work, still wearing his suit from the night before, after a heavy night celebrating a win at the National Television Awards, or shedding a tear on screen as he hears a guest describe his wife’s death, he comes across as authentic and down-to-earth. No airs and graces here people!
To help your brand stay relatable and down-to-earth, Forbes suggests a few simple strategies:
- Humanise your brand with your own unique voice – one which sits well with your brand image.
- Put the spotlight on your employees. Let your nearest and dearest reveal life behind the scenes at your company and shows there’s a human community behind the business façade.
- Acknowledge issues and mistakes. We all make mistakes, but it’s owning up to them that elevates you in the eyes of your community. An international survey by Cohn & Wolfe found that 87% of consumers believed brands should ‘act with integrity at all times’, rating authenticity above innovation and product uniqueness when asked what they valued in a brand.
So, there you have it, Schofield is your new marketing guru. He’s come a long way since the Broom Cupboard, that’s for sure.