When considering social media engagement, it helps to think of the audiences you hope to reach in categories. On a recent episode of the podcast “Social Business Engine,” Avery Dennison Director of Global Digital Communications James Moat listed seven types of social media users most important for brands to target:
1. Creators – Publishers of blog posts, those who upload videos, and creators of memes and other content.
2. Conversationalists – People who update their status or post a tweet at least once a week.
3. Critics – Those who mainly respond to the content other people post rather than post content themselves.
4. Collectors – Using RSS feeds, social bookmarking, and tagging, collectors organize the material they want to receive.
5. Joiners – The Joiner will maintain social media profiles on numerous accounts, though they may not be active in any of them.
6. Spectators – The most common of all social media users, Spectators read blogs, watch videos, listen to podcasts, and scan review sites, but rarely post.
7. Inactives – People who sign up for but don’t use social media are called inactive. This is a slowly disappearing breed as more brands incorporate social media into their websites.
For brands seeking to amplify their story with social media sharing and engagement, the most important targets will be the first three categories — creators, conversationalists, and critics — because these are the most engaged users.
And while three types of users out of seven might seem like a lot, the reality is that 90% of all social media content is posted by 1% of all users, while the bulk of the remaining 10% is posted by only 9% of users. That means 90% of all social media users are unlikely to engage with your content. So, you must identify and define your target audience.
To help you refine your messaging more precisely, you can categorize the users you are attempting to engage into four groups:
1. Customers – Though it goes without saying, current and prospective customers who follow your brand and connect with your employees should be included.
2. Shareholders – These are all the people who have a stake in your company, from collaborators and vendors to potential investors. Make sure they know your company is in good shape and moving into the future with confidence.
3. Communities – Is there something your brand supports passionately, such as a charitable cause, a technology, or a social issue? Include the communities that are important to you in your target audience.
4. Employees – Your employees are a vital asset. Make sure they are in your social media loop as audience members and ambassadors.
Once you define your target audience in this way, you can develop strategies and tactics to engage each segment of your audience, rather than creating generic content, shotgun style, for a random audience.
As James said in the podcast, “The power of social media can be so big for any company on the B2C, B2B side. For any size company, 10 employees to 100,000 employees, there’s so much opportunity there.”
Tapping into that opportunity begins by segmenting your audience.
Meaghan is a Digital Marketing Associate for Find and Convert. She spends most of her time growing the Social Business Engine community as well as supporting client content marketing strategies.