Tag Archives: prospects

Identifying And Growing Your Target Social Media Audience

One of the biggest mistakes made in social media marketing is building the wrong communities. What we mean by that is that many brands and marketers build followings of their peers, competitors or incorrect prospects, rather than their target audience. Subsequently, the time spent on social networks engaging, creating and posting content doesn’t achieve the level of desired results that they had hoped.

Why is the proper targeting and growing of your social community so important?

Our experience tells us that any marketing that is being executed, no matter how skillful, creative or unique is always limited by improper targeted of audience. For example, if your intended audience is nurses, yet you attract, connect with, follow and engage with mostly healthcare vendors like yourself, your results will be minimal. Furthermore, if your company is a restaurant in Chicago and you send direct mail advertisements to homes in Boston, do you think your marketing resources will achieve a return?

Social media marketing is very similar from the audience targeting metrics of other marketing mediums in that you need to know specifically who you are trying to reach. By specifically, we mean you need to be able to clearly outline all facets of your prospective social connects three ways:

Geographically – Specific location or locations, including city, state, region, county or country.

Demographically –  Things like gender, age, ethnicity, language, home ownership, employment status, etc.

Psychographically – Personality, values, opinions, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles

If you do not specifically know who you need to connect with and/or know but are connecting and engaging with others instead, your social media results will suffer greatly. Therefore it is important that the community you build is made up of the of people you need to reach for the product/service you are marketing.

It makes doesn’t it? Please tell me it does… If in fact it does make sense, why do so many do the exact opposite of these things in their social media efforts? The answer is, it is not easy and being humans we often take the path of least resistance, to our own detriment.

Identifying and Growing Your Social Community

Let’s attempt to change the difficulty factor of growing a targeted community through knowledge.

1) Identifying Your Target Audience – The first and most important step to growing a targeted community is to define it clearly. As we stated above, you really need to know who you are trying to reach, where they are located and what interests them. Since we know effective social media marketing is not about you, but rather your audience, then nailing the details of who you need to reach is imperative!

Be very specific about the location(s), demographics and interests of your intended audience. The more specific you are in defining who you want to reach, the more effective you can be. Though geographic and demographic can often be easily determined with experience, psychographic interests can sometimes stump even the most experienced marketer.

There are two tricks to help you identify the more vague psychographic targeting. They are;

  • Competition: One way to determine more about your prospective target audience is to watch your peers and competitors social accounts. Watch for the non-business related topics and interests that drive your prospects to engage, like and share. Taking this further, look at the personal profiles of your prospective customers and take note of the topics that thread through everything they engage with online. The list that results from investigating several prospective customers and competitors social accounts will result in identifying 4-8 key interests or topics that drive your audience.

and

  • Existing Customers: Speak with existing customers and known prospects about their interests on and offline. Discover that drives them in their life. Those are the topics you want to share content on and use to find your target audience.

2) Growing Your Target Audience – There are two distinct ways that marketers should be actively growing their target audience. Attracting new connections and proactively connecting. Having a community that is constantly growing with new connections, while engaged with conversations and relationship building is crucial for numerous reasons and should be a strategic part of any social media marketing program.

Let’s define these two community growth elements.

  • Attracting – If you desire to have organic growth within your social community, ensuring that you are attracting the right connections is imperative. To do this effectively, you will want to be sure you know who you are trying to reach and what topics drive their activity on social media (as we discussed above). Using this information and the other research we suggested, you will want to tailor your content curation, creation and hashtagging to these interests. Be sure that the content you are sharing and the hashtags you are using to attract your following is correctly focused on your prospects needs and interests, not that of your company, peers or competitors.

and

  • Proactive – Supplementing your attraction growth should be an extremely consistent and highly targeted execution of proactive connecting. If you know who you are trying to reach and have defined this very clearly, social media profile searches, viewing friends of your connections as well as connecting with your competition’s following is extremely effective.

At the end of the day, you must be providing value to your community, engaging in conversations and building relationships if your social media marketing efforts are going to see real results. If your strategy is on point, being executed properly and conversations are a daily part of your process, adding audience growth and targeting methods into the mix will add substantial results to your bottom line.

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Filed under Audience, Brand, Community, connection, Content, content creation, Curation, Hashtag, Marketing, Relationship, Results, Social Media, Social Media Content, Social Media Marketing, Strategy

Do You Want To Be Famous or Effective In Social Media?

In a single week recently, I had two conversations within two separate Facebook posts on this topic. Both conversations really boiled down to two things.

1) Using time most effectively

2) Doing activities that get real results

Let me outline the two conversations and include another situation that is becoming much more common…

Conversation 1: It all started with this chat message from a young lady I have been coaching for her social media agency. “I want to be somebody and I feel like I have to do everything I can.” The conversation was about her wanting to blog, do weekly videos on YouTube, etc., in order to become a “name” in the industry.

My Response was as follows: Do you want a name or to make money? If you want to make money, don’t waste time doing things that don’t accomplish that.

The young lady responded with: Both. I need to make money, I’m in a horrible situation but making a name is still very important to me and I don’t do free time. I work that’s it (literally) so if I have time I feel these things could at least help get my name known, plus I feel that the visual/audio is preferred to written blog posts all the time.

My advice to her wrapped up with: You can’t accomplish both when you’re starting out, if anyone tells you differently they’re lying. You either want a name with no proof you have actually done it and no results and revenue to show for it (and there are thousands of these people online) or you build a business and get recognition from doing it well.

Conversation 2: This conversation was apart of a long thread on a Facebook post. The conversation centered on being everywhere in the social graph and showing that you have “influence”. I really go involved when the comment “But, if someone really is an expert, they BETTER have a pretty impressive social media presence” was made.

I responded with: The point is that if you actually have clients and are making money because you are effective, you don’t have the time or NEED to manage your social media so much! – I know for a FACT a number of folks who waste a ton of time appearing influential in social media, yet have nothing financially to show for it. THIS is how people in this business get known as experts. Unfortunately, they have become experts at wasting their time and upping their egos…

Another person involved in the thread added by something to the effect that “If you actually have clients, you don’t have the time to personally be everywhere all the time, or manage a really big Klout score.” To which I wholeheartedly agreed!

Another situation: I was mentioned again on twitter in something like “I nurtured 1155 relationships on Twitter in 2012 with the Commun.it app. Thanks my top members: @xxxxxx @xxxxxx and @xxxx .” This sort of thing is happening to me quite a bit due to the increased use of the application by some, but here are some things you need to consider:

1) Are the relationships you are “nurturing” with prospects? On this particular post (and most) I have noticed that the top “influencers” that you are mentioning with the app are competitors, not prospects. How does that make any sense?

2) If you are spending time building relationships and a name in the social media space but are not getting new clients that pay for this huge amount time, who are you kidding?

My intent here is to get you to focus, to spend your time and efforts wisely, and to use this incredibly powerful medium of social media marketing in a way that furthers your goals, revenue and results. Spend some time early this year to make some modifications to your social media management strategy that will result in achieving real goals and not improving your ego.

I will end my post with a quote one of my good friends posted the day after I wrote this article.

“I aspire to be well off while they aspire to be well-known… #We’reDifferent” by @sociallyahead

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Filed under Agency, Facebook, Relationship, Social Media, Strategy