“One of the most important aspects of any kind of marketing is to connect to the target audience.”
With any marketing platform, off line or on line, the importance and value behind it is the volume of the Target Audience. For instance, if you pay to advertise within one of your industry magazines, you are literally paying for exposure to their readership, ie their target audience gives them value to charge for advertising space. If you are paying to attend a business networking breakfast, once again you are paying to sit alongside other business people, the networking events Target Audience. When it comes to Social Media, you are able to build your own direct target audiences exclusive to you and accessible whenever you want.
Social Media not only allows you to build a direct following such as followers on Twitter or connections on Facebook, you can also build dedicated groups. The power behind owning and maintaining a dedicated group on Social Media is that you have a direct audience to market your products / services to. If you study your industry well, you can create relevant themed groups and audiences which literally gives you the same marketing power as when you pay out money to advertise within magazines or websites. Example:
You run a Holiday Home Insurance company in the UK and currently advertise your services within the two top magazines for holiday homes in Spain and France. Your current marketing budget is £1,000 PCM and you rely on the stats for readership from each magazine you run with to give you an approximation on the enquiries and ROI each monthly spend should give you. Now let’s look at building your own target audience on Social Media:
You use Facebook and Twitter to establish your brand identity on Social Media, approximate monthly cost is £250 PCM if outsourced. Once traction has been established and your audience grows, you create your own target audience building group on for example Linkedin and name that group ‘Owning a Holiday Home in Spain or France Networking Group‘. You dedicate this group to owners of holiday homes to share thoughts, ideas, questions and suggestions with regards to owning a holiday home. Your current following on Twitter and Facebook should be targeted so you start to direct people over to your new Linkedin Group. As this group grows and engagement within the group via discussions and posts increase you monitor and track all content to make sure it is a clean and respected place for all members to enjoy. As the group grows you are then able to market your own ‘Holiday Home Insurance‘ offering to the group, just as you would advertise within the top industry magazines. The cost to advertise to your target group on Linkedin is nothing to you the owner and what’s more, you can advertise as many times as you want and change your promotions as many times as you wish, in the knowledge that all the members will have a direct interest in the service you offer as most members will indeed by a holiday home owner or at least thinking about owning one in the near future. Added to that, if your group becomes popular within this sector, it will be shared outside of your own network and eventually grow naturally and may even actively be worth more to you for advertising your services than paying out to advertise in those top industry magazines.
Social Media is a great way to build your target audience and in the short to mid term, a cost saving marketing solution.