Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Get to Know Your Audience

One of the most amazing elements of social media tools such Twitter and Facebook is that they serve up free information about our audiences, if we take the time to roll up our sleeves and poke around. So put on your research hat and take a hard look at your followers, those you follow, friends, and the chatter in which they engage. The findings of this valuable research enable us to build the profile of our social customer. With an accurate profile, we can fine-tune our message and the timing of its delivery.

Social Media Examiner recently covered the 4 Ways to Discover More About Your Audience With Social Media in its blog. I’m giving it a quick summary. The short post is worth a read for all of its great tips and some of the specialized tools available if you want to take your analysis to the next level.

The bios of your followers often describe what is important to them, where their passions lie. While some people don’t take their bios seriously, most take considerable time to come up with the perfect abbreviated description of their social media persona. These bios can reveal useful information which, in turn, can be applied to fine-tuning our marketing messages.

Knowing when people are reading our content is a key component to delivering our message in a timely fashion. Check the timing of your followers’ posts. Try to tailor your posting schedule to their activity schedules to avoid your posts getting lost in their news feeds while they are off-line. For example, if you are trying to reach young mothers, they are most likely to be socially active in the early mornings and after 8pm. If social media is a large part of your following’s day, posting during regular business hours will most likely hit them while they are paying attention. Monitor the timing of the chatter for a while to get a sense of the best time(s) to try to engage your audience.

Twitter and Facebook give us the opportunity to connect with the top influencers in our respective niche businesses. Take advantage of it by following the gurus in your industry. Learn from their social expertise and mistakes. Engage them and you may find you catch their eye, leading to increases in your own traffic.
The social sites our audiences frequent can help us develop our content. Understand our audiences’ interests and we can post content that will draw them to us.

Take the time to learn from your audience, whether it is large or still building to a respectable level. There will be surprising discoveries as well as expected trends.  Twitter and Facebook are handing this information to us! We should get as much out of it as we can.

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