Last post I introduced my Roadmap for Social Media Marketing Success developed for my new social media marketing book and discussed some issues of building traffic to your website. Lots more specifics are available on this site, on my Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, and from our companion site.
Today, I’d like to talk about the second half of this flowchart — converting traffic as a way to social media marketing success. Although both halves rely heavily on traditional marketing concepts, marketing is really the essence of converting traffic to your site — free from technical confounds such as SEO and usability issues factoring into building traffic to your site.
A Roadmap to Social Media Marketing Success
Converting Traffic With Target Marketing
What is Targeting?
Social media marketing success requires effective target marketing, which is even more critical in social media than in traditional media, such as TV. Why? you ask. Because there are too many places for folks to hang out in social places. Sure, Facebook is still king (for how long?), but it’s also REALLY crowded over there. Not only do you compete with other businesses, but with a users’ friends and family, who they’re really on Facebook to hear, not you.
This leaves you 2 options: (1) talk louder, which I don’t recommend as folks will just find ways to tune you out, or (2) focus your efforts on folks who are the best prospects for your offerings.
If you use specific social media containing a high percentage of your target audience, you’re likely to be more successful than targeting social platforms with large numbers of users.
Let’s have an example. My Wacky Life After 40 is a blog I run for folks (mainly women) over 40 — mostly baby boomers who range from 45-65. Now, I could use Facebook since there are over 750 million users and baby boomers are increasingly on Facebook, or I could try specific social platforms designed for baby boomer. I use Facebook (you don’t want to ignore it totally), but I focus on developing relationships with owners of baby boomer blogs and social networks, since that’s where my folk are.
This drives more traffic to my site, but it also dictates other elements that help me convert better. First, I use a slightly larger typeface and limit the use of flash, since older folks appreciate being able to see easily and are less technically savvy so they might not have flash installed. I can also use elements in my offering that resonate with them.
How do you do target marketing?
Identify groups likely to find your product valuable. Here are some of the ways to think about segmenting markets:
- Geographic difference – such as country, area of the country, rural versus urban, climate, topography, etc.
- Demographic differences – age, gender, household size, marital status, religion, etc.
- Psychographic differences – personality, lifestyle, needs, values
- Behavioral differences – usage rate, awareness, usage occasion, etc
From a management perspective, these segments should be:
- Members of the group should share similarities and be different from other groups.
- They should have different needs.
- The segment should be large enough and stable enough to make it worthwhile.
- They should be reachable with specific communication methods.
Once you’ve identified viable segments within the larger market, you have to understand more about them. Who are they? What are they like? How do they live their lives? What do they need? Where to they hang out online?
Next, you position products based on this information to form product/market segments.
Finally, you need to reach your target market by managing the 4 Ps (product, price, promotion, and place (distribution).
Returning to my example of my website designed for baby boomers, here are some things I’m doing:
- Promotion – Linking with other sites for baby boomers on Facebook, Twitter, Google+. I also scan to find more baby boomers sites and promote these sites to get backlinks and encourage them to promote me.
- Product – My content is focused on issues likely impacting baby boomers. I scan other sites to see what content boomers find valuable. I talk to other boomers and reflect on how I can make their lives easier. I share stories about growing up and the challenges we faced, since boomers likely share these stories.
- Any products I recommend, I’ve used myself and can heartily endorse as valuable for my target audience. Products I endorse fit with my target audience in mind, such as travel options that work for baby boomers.
- Pricing – mostly my content is free for now. Products I endorse are high value, something most baby boomers require.
- Distribution – I manage the way I deliver content to maximize impact in terms of timing, where I distribute content.
I’d love to hear your comments about how you use targeting to convert more traffic in social media marketing. Do you think these tactics would be valuable to you?