Social Media

Why Thinking of Others is the Key to Social Media Success

February 2017
Melissa Sorini

You want likes. You want shares. You want exposure. But what does your audience want? Here’s why understanding your audience is key to success in social media.

Social media is great, right? You have a direct line to your customers and potential leads, and are only a quick few keystrokes - or a funny meme - away from communicating with them in real time. The immediacy of social media is what makes it such an exciting medium, but it can also be your downfall. We’ve all seen cringe-worthy examples of companies that misjudge their audience, launching communications that backfire in an embarrassing or damaging way.

The key to avoiding social marketing faux pas and maximising the effectiveness of your branded messages is to define your audience persona.

Digital marketing is a fickle beast – done poorly it can make you look amateurish or inept. Done well, it can create extraordinary opportunities for your business. The key to success is knowing exactly who you are talking to; and to think about them every time you post on social media.

What is an “audience persona”?

The audience persona for your business is a hypothetical person of your own devising: born from researching and brainstorming your audience. You will give this person a name and create a personal biography for them. Some of this information will come from your actual sales data, and some will come as the result of hunches or educated guesses. The key is to think about them as an actual person, in order to put a human face to your reader.

How do you determine who they are?

The profile for your audience persona will contain vital statistics like age, gender, socioeconomic status, education and professional qualifications. In addition to basic demographic information, you will also define their goals, values, challenges and aspirations. Once you have a clear vision of who this person is you can start crafting truly effective marketing messages that will speak directly to them: tapping into their wants, desires and needs.

Why are they vital to your social media campaigns?

To truly maximise your digital marketing potential you need to have a comprehensive understanding of the audience you are communicating with. Your target persona should be the first and only thing you are thinking about every time you post on social media, and crafting your posts as though you are speaking directly to them will make your communications more genuine, engaging and effective.

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