PS is a freelance marketer and copywriter. She is actively involved in market research to help entrepreneurs with brand-building.
Many businesses, despite having excellent products and services, fail miserably due to bad marketing. Bad marketing happens when a business fails to reach the potential audience and receives a negligible engagement rate.
According to Christopher Newman, a marketing professional, “Many times marketers decide to create the campaign first, then identify the target market hoping to achieve the desired response.” This is not at all an effective strategy. The best way is to figure out the target audience first, and then plan the marketing strategy to generate a higher conversion rate.
How to identify the target audience?
Before looking for the potential audience, you need to identify them on the basis of the following factors:
- Age group
- Average income
- Common values
- And other similar factors that will help you decide your ideal customer.
Every marketing guru and professionals have the common phrase among them, “build content people”. Surely, important advice, but the problem is people don’t usually come across interesting content often. This is a solid fact even if social media like Instagram and Facebook deliver content on the basis of people’s likes and shares.
So, as a marketing professional, you need to help your client, whether big or small, identify their target audience. It’s appropriate to create a questionnaire for your client.
Considering the variety of social media platforms, we have today, it is important to figure out which one suits best for your business. For example, if you working for a recruitment company (especially IT or law field), LinkedIn would be a better option than Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook.
You also need to consider platforms where your target audience is most active. This kind of work demands detailed research. You might also need to run a few surveys to reach a conclusion. SurveyMonkey is one such site to help you generate such surveys.
Statistics of Social Media Platforms in the year 2019
Here is an analysis of famous social media platforms for the year 2019 to help you find your target audience.
Facebook is still the most used social media platform having more than 2 billion active monthly users. Age group 25 to 34 comprises the 30% population of Facebook total users. If your target audience lives in America, then there are around 300 million American users active on Facebook. So, there’s a big chance you can find your target audience here.
Twitter has fairly fewer active monthly users than Facebook, yet people thrive upon this social media platform to find out the trending hashtags and latest news. More than 300 million people use Twitter every month. Among Twitter users, 37% belong to the age group 18 to 25, while 25% belong to the age groups 30 to 49. This concludes that younger Americans are highly enthusiastic about Twitter. If this is your target audience, then make sure to generate some highly creative tweets within the limited character limit.
Instagram is a newer platform in comparison to Twitter and Facebook, yet it has managed to cross 1 billion in a very short time. It is hugely popular among youngsters as well as millennials, especially women who are more active on this platform than men. If your target audience age group is below 40, then this is your perfect marketing platform.
Conduct a Survey to Find the Potential Customers
The above available statistics are fine enough to give you a generalized picture of your target audience. To make it more specific and highly targeted, you need to go for more than one strategy. To get complete information, it is important to ask the people relevant questions. Surveys play a key role in giving you the healthiest juice for content marketing.
You must survey your possible ideal customers before launching a marketing campaign. This will help you figure out their preferred social media platforms and at what time they use their accounts. Some sample questions are as follows:
- Which social media site do you use the most?
- When do you use your favorite social media site (day and time)?
- Do you read blogs? If yes, then provide their names.
- What people and type of content do you follow on social media?
Identify your Target Audience Size
When it comes to identifying the particulars about the target audience, Facebook has everything to look for. Facebook ads not only help you promote your business, but they also provide data regarding your target audience and their size. For example, if your promoting location lies in New York, you can easily find out that 200,000 people match the criteria.
However, if your audience is way too large, you can start with a narrower niche to target a more specific set of audience. For example, “social media marketing” can be specialized in advertising (organic or paid), content curation and sea marketing and so on.
The best way to start is to spend your money first on a smaller size of the audience that appears highly promising. After this successful attempt, you can enlarge your target audience in a large demographic area.
Clearly, this will also save your budget and maximize the profit.
You can also shorten your target audience size by neglecting those people who are interested in your competitor’s services. For example, Starbucks would point out Costa Coffee, Cafe Coffee Day, and Dunkin’ Donuts. It means they will approach those people who are not interested in these restaurants. For ideas, check out your competitors’ content creation examples.
You should also list down the social media influencers who can work for your niche. Beware of influencers with fake followers, consider their engagement rate and other activities on social media. Sometimes, an influencer with 5k works better than someone with 100k.
Time to List Down your Customers and Interact with Them
You can upload your email database to every prominent social media platform to look for your customers. Using Facebook Ads Manager, you can generate a customised audience. Your CRM (Customer Relationship Management), along with your social media management software can help you reach out to and interact with customers in a short time. Now, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn have added similar features in their ads manager.
Search the Target Audience in Facebook Groups
Many customers tend to join Facebook Groups since they are more interactive and highly helpful in comparison to pages. You just need to run a simple search to find groups that match your customers’ interests. If your customers fall into multiple categories, then divide them into different segments. It’s best to go for one type of audience set at one time. It is always fruitful in the long run.
Customize Content as Per Your Target Audience
Now, you are done with finding the particulars about your target audience. Start customizing the content that suits best for them. Here are a few rules that will be helpful for you:
- Create only one post of curated content in a week
- Promote only two times in a week
- Generate at least one engaging content in a day
Now, an important question, does your page rightly engage with your followers? They visit for your page to look something for themselves. So, not only showcase your goods, but also make sure to post inspirational and informative content. This is the best strategy to keep your customers stick with you for longer, else you’ll lose your target audience. There are several content creation templates available to help you create the perfect posts. Just run a simple search on Google to find the best templates.
You must optimize your content with different types of posts such as funny, motivational, videos, animated, polls, educational, infographics and so on.
Your main goal is to generate traffic and convert them into leads to grow business sales from your social media pages. Think like an audience. It is better to schedule posts. Do not overdo by posting multiple posts at a single time. Also, make sure to reply to your post comments.
Develop a Balanced Content Plan
Working for social media marketing for a while now, I have learned a lot about creating different types of posts that work wonder for my business.
Social Media Space is a whole world by itself. There’s much more to social media marketing than just understanding your target audience demographics. Take your time and create appealing content for each of your social media channels. Keep your audience engaged through social media is great art. Here are some effective tricks:
If you have this question in your mind, “Why my followers don’t comment on my posts?”, then you need to revise your previous posts and check out if you are asking any question to your followers. Sometimes, your followers can’t understand your expectations. It’s better to let them know what you are asking from them.
Make sure to use professional photo and video editor software to present each photo with aesthetics. It might take from several minutes to hours, but keep the message clear and photo visually appealing.
From time to time, post-Q&A to improve communication. Post questions that make you better understand your followers.
Use Visual Quotes to Motivate
Visuals are more noticeable in comparison to other media. Clearly, that’s the reason why social media sites like Instagram and TikTok are comparatively more famous. People, including us, read the text only if it is visually appealing and takes lesser than a minute to decide.
Use this as a weapon to promote your posts. Offer your followers visually appealing posts to inspire and energize them all day long.
It takes a lot of consideration and creativity to create one successful promotional post. Here are a few suggestions from content marketing best practices:
Don’t always be so sales-oriented
Promotional posts must not always be about offers and discounts or the launch of new products. Remember, the initial goal of you being on social media is to build your brand reputation and create strong bonds with your followers. You can also take advantage of company news, webinars, and other related content to drive traffic to your social accounts.
Speak the audience's language. Try to imitate their likes and dislikes. Not at all a difficult task to accomplish. This is what actually termed as identifying your target audience.
Share your brand stories. Tell your followers how you managed to keep up your brand reputation. Show them your office and the place where you work. Discuss your future plans and intentions with them. If you run an offline store, then share videos of your staff. Let your staff discuss their experience of working with you. This must make your followers curious to visit your store and experience your products and services. Befriend them and show how your work benefits them in the long run.
Under this category, informative visuals, blog posts, and infographics fit perfectly well. Figure out the topics that your audience is interested in. Ask them questions about their likes and dislikes before posting your content.
Curated content is the valuable content that is generated by filtering all the related news, articles, videos, and infographics across the web. It is a good option to opt for if it enhances your brand value and boosts your followers. Make use of trending topics, mentions, influential points of view and so on.
Professional content curators accept the fact that merging the most creative ideas together to come up with something brilliant is a huge challenge and requires careful study. Despite the abundance of information available both online and offline, ideas don’t come easily. It is always recommended to make use of books and articles, and also interact with different individuals to come up with a solid idea. You can also try forging ideas by finding some random words in the dictionary, which are not at all interrelated. On the other hand, choosing any image online and modifying it to suit your needs is also a good idea to let your creativity flow in full blast.
Kevin Rhodes from Connecticut, USA on December 03, 2019:
Great piece! Very in-depth, informative and gives the reader much to consider.