Ever told a cracking story to a group of people and it just fell….. well, on its face?
That’s because you didn’t know your audience (or it was a terrible story, let's be honest).
You’ll hear us harp on about your audience in the social media sphere A LOT. That’s because it’s important!
Why? Simple, it means you can craft content that resonates with them. This makes it easier to connect with them and earn their loyalty. Which, you guessed it, means more sales (or whatever your business is about). It also makes your job in creating content for them a heck of a lot easier.
When combined with a strong brand voice, correct tone and some killer visuals, you’ll stand out from the herd.
But how does one go about knowing their audience? Let’s break it down.
Who are you currently talking to?
If you've been courting in the social media space for a while, you’ll have accumulated a selection of followers organically. Many of whom are likely already using your products or services. So get to know them!
To start with, pop into the insights tab on Facebook and Insta and you can get a quick glimpse of your audience's age, gender, location etc.
Then dive deeper.
If you track your engagement rates on your content (if you don’t, start, it’ll tell you a lot), then you’ll also have a rough idea of what they like, don’t like and more.
For example you might be a company selling floral headbands for calves, which we’ll call ‘BovineBands’. A quick look at your audience insights tab might tell you that your audience are females between the ages of 18 and 35, mainly situated in the Waikato, Otago, Canterbury and Northland.
From some sleuthing on their activity on your page you can tell they love cute calf content (who doesn’t?), and many people purchase these headbands for calf club days.
All this information can be used to create content that speaks specifically to them. You can create content that focuses on regional goings on, target your ads, and so much more. It means you can target more of the people who are already hooked on your product and likely to become customers.
What if my audience is shy and I only know the basics?
You do two things:
Do something radical and…. ask them. Pop up a quick question, poll or GIF for them to answer and that will help give you an idea about the inner workings in their head. Not a ‘coffee vs tea’ type question but something topical and related to your industry.
Figure out who you WANT to talk to - so....your target audience. Not dissimilar to your buyer personas. Who are the people your product or service is geared towards? How old are they, where do they live, what are their hobbies, what are their pain points etc? Jot it all down and boom - you’ve got yourself a target audience (your target audience isn’t ‘everyone’…. unless you're Google).
Depending on your business, you might have a few different target audiences. You could want to talk directly to customers but also want to engage with prospective B2B customers.
Knowledge is power, but now what?
Now you write!
Armed with the knowledge of the people you're talking to (and want to talk to) you can create content that speaks directly to them.
When you're sitting down each month to brainstorm your social media content, it should be with your audience in mind. What’s going to get them excited? What will get them talking and sharing? What will educate them and help create a sense of community?
Jot down a brainstorm of ideas and plot out your month based on your content strategy (we love the 4:1:1 method around here!) and have at it. Keep thinking back to your audience and ask yourself ‘will they like this?’
For example, our audience base for BovineBands, is not likely to engage with or resonate with a post about the perks of urban living and reasons to choose the bus over a car (an extreme example, but you get our drift).
Remember to use your brand voice and correct tone for each and you can make each piece of content a winner baby!
BovineBands example: You could decide that in the coming month, you want to have an even split of talking directly to your customers but also start talking to businesses who might want to stock your headbands.
Content ideas for direct customers:
Educational post on poisonous flowers for bovines
Styling tips for calf club day
Content ideas for prospective B2B customers:
Our story - how it all began
Share content from a business you want to engage with
You can gauge the success of different types of content each month through your analytics and make tweaks accordingly for the following months. It can sometimes take some time to figure out the types of content an audience likes and dislikes.
Social media is about being social. It’s not enough to have a brand on social media and just push out content that's sales focused. It would be like going to a party and some bloke in a suit and tie coming up and immediately saying “Have you heard about this fabulous deal we have?” and then “Buy now and save 5%”.
Consumers want to feel part of a community. They want to feel seen and heard. If you can create that through your content, you can land yourself customers that are loyal and will help do some of your marketing for you through word of mouth.
However, the starting point is knowing your audience.