Social media is a significant part of our everyday lives and has also become essential for business. B2B businesses, big and small, are using social media to build their brand and engage with their customers.
But for social media to work for your business, it’s crucial to find your target audience. If this seems like a daunting task—don’t fear. We have compiled this 8-step guide as a roadmap to show you the best way to find your target audience in 2021.
Step 1 – Identify Your Target Audience
This step is the most important—without it, it’s pointless being on social media. As a business, whether B2B or B2C, you must know who you’re targeting with 100% clarity. That is the customers, including prospects, that you want to be engaging and doing business with.
Many businesses have active and rich content social media accounts but still fail in the space because their content isn’t reaching the right audience. It’s going to everyone and anyone. To avoid this, you must first identify your target audience.
To do this properly, be strategic and perform some demographic and psychographic research on your target audience that looks at factors like:
• Industry (where they work)
• Age group
• Marital status
• Location (include both local, interstate, and international)
• Social status
• Economic status
• Pain points and struggles they face
• Their core values
• Hobbies and interests
• Third parties—colleagues, family, and friends
Step 2 – Ask Your Customers What Social Media Platforms They Are On
Go straight to the source—your existing customers and potential customers—and ask them what platforms they are on. Also, ask what platforms their friends and families are on.
To do this effectively, conduct a survey, customer feedback, poll, or a combination of these. Surveys, customer feedback, and polls are all highly strategic methods of extracting vital information about customers that you can then put to good business use.
Before the digital age, businesses understood their importance and used them. Now, with the online world, you can create a poll on LinkedIn, a survey or customer feedback on Typeform, or a Google form and send them to customers.
Through asking highly targeted questions, you’re able to find out tons about your target audience’s behaviors, preferences, and thought processes. Consider asking questions like:
• What is your favorite social media platform, and why?
• How many times a week are you on social media?
• Who do you follow on social media?
• What topics do you follow on social media?
• What types of content do you consume? (blogs, posts, videos, etc.)
• What solutions are you searching for on social media?
• What are your main frustrations with social media?
Step 3 – Search Social Media Groups for Your Target Audience
Social media groups (like Facebook groups) are great places to find your target audience. Many of these groups are huge, with thousands of people, so the potential for brand awareness and business growth is huge.
Many businesses around the world during COVID-19 have increased their brand awareness, leads, and sales through being on Facebook groups. Of course, you must be strategic and only join groups relevant to your target audience.
It’s predicted that in 2021, LinkedIn groups will become more active and engaging like Facebook groups. Currently, LinkedIn groups don’t have the same traction as Facebook groups, but it’s predicted this will change in 2021 and beyond. So, keep an eye out!
Step 4 – Listen in on Conversations to Find Your Target Audience
We’re not suggesting you breach any privacy laws here; instead, we’re proposing you engage in social listening. This involves putting your customers first before pushing your product or service on to them.
Start listening carefully to what they are saying about your business, your industry, and your products and services. Listen when they are talking about challenges they are facing and solutions they are chasing.
In addition, listen to their suggestions and feedback, including any criticism. Along with conducting surveys, customer feedback, and polls, this step will provide you with heaps of valuable information that you can put to good use. It’s essentially being the fly on the wall that takes input and turns it into valuable content and solutions for your customers.
Step 5 – Participate in Online Communities and Forums
This step is intricately linked with step four and is a type of market research in the digital age. You essentially participate in online discussions with your target audience through online communities and forums.
The great thing is you can be anywhere in the world. In 2020, Quora’s global online community has grown exponentially and will continue to grow in 2021, so you want to make use of it as a business. On Quora, you can look for your target audience and ask and answer their questions. It is an online question and answer website that originally followed in the footsteps of Yahoo Answers and has now replaced Yahoo Answers.
Step 6 – Study Data to Find Your Target Audience
In the digital age, we face no shortage of data with metrics in place for just about everything. We have metrics to measure website performance, blog posts, podcasts, videos, social media accounts, etc. These metrics tell us invaluable information about our target audience as well as our prospects.
Through data, you’re able to see if your overall content marketing strategy, including your social media strategy, is working or not. Using a tool like Google Analytics shows you the who, the when, the where, and the how behind your target audience.
Step 7 – Study Your Competition
Looking at your competitors and seeing what kind of content, voice, engagement, and who they are appealing to gives you invaluable insights for how to go about finding your target audience on social media.
Thanks to the online world, studying your competition has never been easier. It’s a proven and time-tested technique that has been used by businesses since business first started.
Consider compiling your competitor research into a report which you and your team can study and review. Include factors in your report like:
• The social media platforms your competitors are most active on
• The times in a week or day they are most active
• Who their top followers are
• Any influencers they are associated with
• Their engagement rates
• The hashtags they use
• What keywords they are using to get customers
Step 8 – Conduct Keyword and Topic Research
With such a wide range of tools (many free too) available to conduct keyword and topic research as a business, you should take full advantage. Doing so will enable you to establish not only where your target audience is located but also help you establish what type of content they are searching for.
Remember, we all search the internet to find answers. You want to provide your target audience with those answers. And through creating relevant, useful, and in-demand content, you are doing just that. To help you with your content creation, conduct keyword, and topic research using tools like:
Through implementing the above steps and then regularly reviewing, monitoring, and adapting your overall social media marketing, you’ll have a much better chance of finding your target audience on social media—and then interacting and engaging with them.
In 2021 and beyond, there will be new social media platforms and trends to pay attention to. But by having the right strategy in place, you can make sure you’re targeting the right audience. For more expert guidance on your social media, Contact the Content Marketing Experts at Content Callout