By 2022, the number of social media users will be more than 3 billion, up from 2.62 billion in 2018.
That sounds overwhelming because, as a business, all you want is to get hold of a small number of these users and convert them into your leads and customers.
And, every time you try to do this through your social media marketing efforts, it feels like you’re banging your head against a wall. Defining your target market and reaching them on social media is daunting.
But what does defining your target market on social media entail at a time when getting people’s attention is becoming harder and, for marketers who aren’t properly optimizing, the cost of social advertising is increasing?
And, most importantly, how do you do it right to make sure that you’re reaching your target market with every post and ad you put up on social media to help you get an ROI from your efforts?
In addition to posting content on social media, you need to put your ear to the ground and listen to what people are saying. Without this, you will be engaging in a monologue that no one finds interesting.
Not sure what your audience wants to see? Ask them, it’s that simple! Create engaging polls or use the question stickers on Facebook and Instagram and get it straight from the horse’s mouth.
Listening to what people are saying on social media helps you know their needs, frustrations, fears, goals, and desires, helping you understand what makes them engage with you.
Besides, you get to understand their values by knowing what makes them buy from you and the concerns they have concerning your products and services.
So what do you listen for? Popular brands, your competitors, industry influencers, popular topics, and what people are saying on social media platforms. And since you can’t do all these at once, use Socialbakers’ listening and intelligence tool to make things easier for you.
Start with the positive feedback your social media followers provide concerning your products or services and your brand.
In addition to reducing your refunds and managing your reputation, you will be identifying product and content gaps that you need to fill in to accommodate the different needs of your target market.
Then head over to your competitors’ and influencers’ pages and follow the conversations going on, noting popular topics from the discussions going on.
The tone and style you use in your social media posts elicit different emotions in your audience, determining whether they will engage with you or not.
If people in your target market use an energetic tone and witty humor to express themselves on social media, then use a similar tone to connect with them.
For instance, Somnifix takes a humor-focused tone on their website…
…And their posts on social media use a similar tone:
So, identify the tone that works for your target market by looking at the words they use and how they say it. Do they sound elegant? Irreverent? Dependable?
Once you identify their tone, start testing to see what works best for them. You see, your target market is in different stages of the buyer’s journey, and you don’t expect them to express themselves in the same way in every stage.
Use a writing tool to test different angles and copy to see what works. Once you find the right tone, make sure that you use it consistently on all social media platforms to help build trust and familiarity with your target market.
Whether or not you’re using a writing tool, keep in mind that sometimes the best writer for the job won’t be you and learn to be okay with that.
Once you listen and know the popular topics that appeal to your target market, start sharing the content you produce with them.
Your content provides answers to their questions and solves their problems, so you’ll start earning their trust and drive engagement with them.
Besides, they will share this content with other people, meaning that you’re expanding your reach in the process.
For example, if you were a virtual private network (VPN) company, you would want to share content that benefits your audience as Cooltechzone does below highlighting the best VPN providers of 2020:
Note how this blog post doesn’t just focus on one company but on ten. You shouldn’t be afraid to talk about your competitors and even do a comparison post, as this creates trust.
We all know that trust leads to a higher chance of conversion, right?
However, you should also be posting comprehensive guides on your own products and services as well, like this detailed IPVanish review post below:
Basically, you want to make sure users are finding the answers to their questions on your site and not your competitors’.
Better yet, you want to help this content get found through the use of social media sharing.
Here’s how to make sure that you have enough content to share from each blog post you create and publish:
If you’ve written a post like How to Get More Customer Reviews Through Social Media, split it up into bits and share each piece to drive engagement.
Do this consistently to know which elements of your blog posts work best through the engagement you get. Besides, once you know what type of content works best, double down on that to build better relationships with your target market.
Be sure to check out my guide on how to start a blog at AdamEnfroy.com for more information on creating and distributing content for success.
Venngage conducted a study and found that 90% of marketers are frustrated with their lead generation efforts. One reason that the study provides for this is that most marketers are using the wrong lead generation strategy.
Your target market is made up of prospects who have different needs and who are in different stages of the buyer’s journey. To meet these needs effectively, you need to know what offers work best for them in each stage.
And the best way to do this is through using different lead magnets in your offers. If they respond poorly to a lead magnet, your audience might not like that specific content.
So when deciding the type of lead magnet to use, remember that it needs to offer a specific promise, an example, a shortcut, and answer a burning question or offer a discount.
For example, for brand new leads coming from organic search, you’d want to tempt them to give you contact info by providing additional resources they can use. LFA Machines implements this by offering a curated ebook as a lead magnet:
This approach allows you to narrow down to what matters to them, so the only thing you need to decide is which lead magnet works for what buying stage.
For example, a case study and a discount will work better for a social media user who is in the decision stage. On the other hand, a shortcut to solving their problems will work best for someone in the awareness and evaluation stage.
Content like this is providing solutions to problems (or in other words, a shortcut). I was searching for ways to improve customer service and came across an idea that might be new to me using call recording data.
Try pairing this awareness oriented bottom of funnel content with a targeted call-to-action, just like GetVoIP did in the example above:
That way, you both get something out of it. The reader gets a solution to their problem and you get their email address. It’s a win-win!
Don’t be afraid to experiment and try things like exit-intent pop-ups as well, which are triggered when a user goes to exit the page:
As you can see in this example from Lyfe Accounting, they offer a free consultation to give users one last chance to learn more about their bookkeeping services for small businesses.
You can get really creative with your lead magnets and even use interactive tools like this food cost calculator from Upserve:
To get the results, have users input their name and email address.
Again, just keep in mind that the only way to know is through testing to see what appeals to your own target market. The best marketers are constantly testing and tweaking things, so don’t be afraid to follow suit.
As you move users down your funnel, you can even start to offer things like free trials as a more targeted lead magnet like Monday.com does for their popular software:
Once you capture contact info, use a tool like Right Inbox to set up email sequences for leads you capture and start testing different content offerings to see what your audience likes or dislikes.
With email, you’ve taken this conversation further so you can easily engage in one-on-one conversations with these leads and get to know them better.
Better yet, I highly suggest dropping them into a drip sequence so that you stay at the top of their minds (and inbox).
In short, drip emails are prewritten emails that are sent out on autopilot. Let’s say someone opts in to your lead magnet, which could then trigger another action such as a three-day promotional campaign that’s related to whatever they opted in to.
Using the free trial example above from Monday…
Once someone subscribes, you could then trigger a set of follow-up emails from an account manager to ensure they have their questions answered during the trial. That way, you ensure success and that they are ready to provide their credit card information for the paid subscription.
Basically, you want to keep it pretty “high-touch” during this crucial time where someone is a hot lead.
Here’s a great resource from XO Agency on using drip email campaigns to nurture leads:
The best part is that people who read your drip emails are way more likely to actually click the links in them, with a 119% click-through rate.
There are so many different ways you can set them up, and most email marketing platforms make it easy to do so.
Needless to say, you should not be ignoring this step if you’re even thinking about creating lead magnets.
Not everyone in your target market on social media prefers reading the content you share. Some are constantly on the move, so they prefer tuning in to listen to podcasts. And you can’t afford to ignore this segment.
I talk about this more extensively in my guide to podcast hosting, but here are a few tips to get you started…
Look for shows talking about the content you’re already sharing, come up with relevant topics, then request to appear as a guest.
Appearing as a guest on these shows helps you achieve two things: It builds your credibility and awareness with an audience that might tune in to listen to your shows.
Once you start appearing on other shows, create a podcast on Garageband and share it on social media, touching on different topics to see which resonate with your audience.
Since you already have an idea of who makes up your target audience, identify the influencers you need to work with. Once you have a list of these influencers, divide them into two groups depending on the number of followers they have and how often they engage with them. Ideally, you should have ‘micro-influencers’ and the ‘big shots.’
Start building relationships with micro-influencers through sharing their content on social media, responding to their questions, and commenting on their posts.
As you do this, you’ll earn their trust, and they will be open to sharing your content with their followers whenever you request them to do so.
Besides, once you succeed at this, you’ll have built enough credibility to help you earn the attention of the big shots in your industry, helping you reach a bigger audience than you already have.
Defining and reaching your target market on social media isn’t as straightforward as it seems. But nonetheless, it’s important not to get paralyzed by decision.
As we’ve mentioned before, your customers have different needs and are in different stages of the buyer’s journey. That makes them a complex bunch.
To appeal to them, you need to meet them where they are. Use the different ways we’ve talked about above and fill in the missing part of the puzzle.
For instance, if you’ve struggled with knowing what type of content works for them, listen to what they are talking about, identify the content gaps, then create and share that content with them. Improve engagement by asking rapport-building questions then offer lead magnets to see what works for them.
Over time, you’ll get to know them better by identifying their needs and knowing how to meet them. Your social media followers will increase, and you’ll reduce the cost of running social ads and get a better ROI from all your efforts on social media.
And isn’t that what you want?
Understand your audience, create more effective content to engage and grow your customer base, and measure social media’s impact on your business goals.