Whether you want to grow your social audience or drive traffic to your website (or any of the myriad other marketing objectives), a social media advertising strategy is a great way to accomplish your goals. But only if you target the right audience with the right message.
In a recent post, I reviewed stats on social media audiences and where you might find your target audience. If you work primarily in residential interior design and cater to a higher-end client, I’m willing to bet you’re not targeting Millennials. If these things are true, you are most likely to find your clients on Facebook and to a lesser degree on Instagram and Pinterest. If you are targeting the Millennial set, you might be looking at Snapchat for your best social marketing efforts. Since it is the most widely used social channel, I’ll stick to Facebook for the purposes of this post. Pinterest and Instagram follow similar audience targeting platforms.
Who is Your Ideal Customer?
I could do a whole lesson on developing your ideal customer persona — and I will now that I realize I haven’t done that yet! However, the main idea behind your client persona(s) is to create a detailed description of who this person is including demographic as well as psychographic information. For instance, your ideal client might be “Janet. She is 47 years old, divorced, with two teenage children about to head off to college and a dog she takes to doggy daycare nearly every day. She’s an attorney with her own practice. She’s a busy professional but always attends her kids’ school activities and events. Her annual income is greater than $150,000, and she wants a home designed for entertaining both clients and friends.”
There are a couple of schools of thought on how to go about developing your personas. One way is to paint the picture of the client with whom you most want to work. Another is to review the data on all of your previous clients to arrive at the demographic and psychographics that best fit most of those clients. However, what if the data most fits “Brenda who is a stay-at-home mom who changed her mind sixteen times about the bathroom faucet and called you daily to check in on the project even though she was right there in her home the entire time”?
I believe the data is extremely important to gather and cull through, but for personas you want to lean heavily on your ideal client and not the client you ended up with for ten projects over the last three years. If this is a problem you’ve experienced, creating these ideal client personas and using them to guide your marketing, positioning, content and social media presence will help you eliminate those less-than-ideal leads and capture more of the clients you really want to work with.
If you’re not sure what social channels your best prospects are on, consider surveying your past clients who fit the personas you want to target. You should request specific information such as:
- What social media sites do you regularly use?
- What websites do you visit for information on interior design and decorating?
- Do you listen to podcasts? If so, which ones?
- Do you regularly read blogs? If so, which ones?
You can use Google Forms, SurveyMonkey or other free options to gather your information. If your list is a small one, you might opt to send a personal email to each person. Just be sure to aggregate your data in a spreadsheet so you can analyze the results.
How Many People Will You Target?
Once you’ve determined who your audience is, you want to determine how large your audience is within your service area. If you work in Dallas, Texas, for example, your audience can be extremely large. There are more than 1 million women between the ages of 30 and 64. To ensure the success of your social media advertising strategy, be sure you are reaching the most qualified buyers by targeting your audience even further. One way to do that would be to focus on particular zip codes instead of all of Dallas. If you don’t particularly mind working in any parts of the city or don’t feel that zip codes will be targeted enough, you can begin to drill down by demographics.
You can add a demographic filter into the detailed targeting field to narrow your audience. If you want to add more than one demographic, simply use the “exclude people” or “narrow audience” links. Here, you can see that we are targeting the original set of women ages 30 to 64, but we are narrowing that audience to homeowners who are married and have an estimated household income of $150,000 to $249,999. This gives us a potential reach of about 62,000 people.
The opposite could be true — you may find that your audience is too small. In that case, you may want to expand your area or eliminate some filters. Just keep in mind that you want to target your best prospects (think: buyer personas).
You should narrow or broaden your audience depending on your specific goals for each social media advertising campaign. For instance, if your goal is to grow your social audience, you might opt for less targeting filters — you will cast a wider net. However, if your goal is to generate leads, you’ll want to target your ads more narrowly.
Other Ways to Reach the Right People
There are a couple of other ways to reach particular audiences. One would be to use a tracking pixel. This is a snippet of code placed in your website that tracks visitors to your site. This allows you to build and market to an audience that is already familiar with your brand. Another way is to create a look alike audience based on the audience you already have for your page. This will generate a new audience of people with similar characteristics to the audience you have. If you have a large database of past clients and prospects, you might opt for uploading a list and marketing directly to those people.
Extend your reach even further when you run Facebook ads by editing your ad placement options. When you run campaigns for website traffic, conversions and other objectives, you can include in your ad placement options Instagram and Audience Network. The same audience targeting is applied when you reach beyond Facebook. The Audience Network allows you to show ads to your targeted audience in Facebook-approved apps and websites. This means your audience can be exposed to your brand on multiple platforms leading to greater brand recognition. The Audience Network can take some time to set up, but it’s worth the extra effort.
Test, Measure and Repeat
Once your ads are up and running, be sure to test ad copy and images for maximum results. Just be sure to only change one thing each time or you won’t know what is driving the results. Measure and track which images and copy get the best results so you can refine your ad strategy to get the most bang for your buck.
Need help developing and implementing your social media advertising strategy? We can help. Contact h3mediaworks today.