by Team Yakkety Yak March 13, 2017
Finding the social audience interested in your brand is difficult; however, in order to increase engagement and fully extract the marketing potential of social media, it’s pertinent—but it’s not a simple process. It’s tricky to comb through the extremely robust and heavily populated platforms to attract potential customers that are currently unaware of your posts, page and presence online.
1. Identify your target audience. First start with the process of nailing down your brand persona and get super clear on who you want your target market to be. We suggest outlining a single ideal customer. List out every detail about this person from their demographics to their psychographics, and cap it off by giving them a name. Refer to this post to help you identify your target audience and use our free printout to assist you with your brainstorm.
2. Scope out the Competition. If you really aren’t sure who you serve, scope out your competitors doing well in the market. Check out their social media and identify users that interact the most with their pages. Look for commonalities between these users and review your competitor’s content to pick up clues as to who they believe is their target audience. Peruse the content on their pages and gather strong keywords, hashtags, and site referrals. Jot these down for later.
3. Go where your audience hangs out. You may already have an idea of which social media platforms your customers prefer, but going through a more data-driven process can only validate what you know. It’s helpful to gain insights on all platforms. Each social site will serve its unique advantage to your brand in a different way, so identify a few that you will use consistently in your social media marketing.
4. Monitor Keywords and Insights. Use free monitoring tools like Google Analytics, BuzzSumo, and Social Mention to track who is talking about your website, your competitor’s websites and the keywords related to your brand. Identify where you keywords are mentioned and who is heavily influencing the subject matter. In addition, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn can assist you in nailing down the size of your potential audience. Use their advertising insights with details from your target audience exercise and mock up a targeted ad. You will get an expected audience size and have a better idea of which platforms your market prefers
5. Start connecting. There are a number of social media platforms that you must navigate. Understand what works for your business and your target audience and pick a few networks that work best for your needs. Most of the following tips will apply across the board. Twitter and Instagram both have third party tools that can help you classify your audience of interest. Find local users and key influencers in the industry from Twitter search and Iconosquare. From there, browse the user’s followers and following to drill-down and connect further.
6. Attend Events. Events like niche conferences can also be great help for audience research. Look for hashtags associated with events that speak about topics relating to your business. Connect with the users talking about the event – now you know they are willing to pay to learn about your subject area. Use interest-related groups and fan pages for influencers on Facebook and LinkedIn, or browse their Twitter lists to gather more connections with your target audience.
7. Engage. Once you find your audience and identify where they hang out, start engaging in conversation. Find individuals who are asking specific questions in interest groups. Comment on those posts, offer advice, and refer them to find more on your page. Include the popular topics and hashtags in posts that you identified in your research. Now that you know your target audience is talking about these specific topics you can confidently know you will reach them organically.
Reaching your target audience on social media often takes time and a significant amount of web-based research, but it is worth knowing you have a following that benefits from your content and knowing your brand’s product or service provided. Think of this as an active form of growing engagement organically. It is important to revisit this process as your brand will morph along with your audience throughout the months and years. Technology changes rapidly – as do interests on social media. Continue to monitor your activities and research influencers in the industry to keep up with your newly established social media presence.