11 May Engaging your Target Audience: Instagram
Who is your target audience? How can you interact with them in a seemingly organic environment? Social media has given businesses a platform to communicate with a broad range of consumers on a level that feels personal if done right.
Large businesses capitalize on this to create a buzz, and make their brand likable – such as Wendy’s. The fast-food chain is known for hilarious and savage tweets. They have a reckless abandon roasting brand haters and competitors that their target audience loves, and it has driven sales up.
Brand likability is so important because no one wants to buy from a company whose values they don’t identify with. It’s like friendship, you want to support and be friends with the people you like. It’s only human to want the same thing from businesses.
Small businesses have trouble replicating the Wendy’s model, but they don’t have to in order to be successful. Engaging with your target audience can be more personal for small businesses.
For example, if you have an agency, following each of your clients on social media, commenting on their photos, and liking them lets your clients know that you care about them on a level deeper than just collecting their check each month. It keeps your brand at the forefront of their mind and feels very proactive and supportive. Engaging with clients in an agency setting should just be part of policy.
If your business is not an agency but relies on consumers, engaging with accounts that fit your target audience is key to a successful social media page. If your product is proven and your business is already on the right path to success, Instagram presence will only help.
First, identify your target audience. Set hard guidelines such as age range, gender(s), sexual orientation, beliefs, interests, geographic area, etc. This will help you to identify users that are beneficial to interact with much easier.
Once you have a solid idea of your target audience, start finding these users through hashtags, influencers, and location. Let’s say you’re selling a software that books trips for much cheaper than average. Your target audience is people who want to travel. You can search #travel and engage with the appropriate users who have posted there or liked posts there. Your next step would be to find travel influencers and engage with their followers. Next, you can search tourist locations and engage with those users.
Continue this each day for at least an hour a day. Like about 3-4 photos per page and comment on one if you have something authentic to say about it. Make sure your comments feel real by commenting more than just one word. For example, if it’s a photo of flowers, instead of “beautiful!” say “these flowers are beautiful!!” so that the user knows you are not a bot. Doing all of this makes your brand feel very authentic, and drives traffic to your page.
DON’T: Comment on people’s photos telling them to check out your site, your page, or anything like that. People are very turned off by self-serving social media users. Don’t message people telling them to check you out either unless you are trying to work with an influencer and want them to see your brand before becoming a partner. Keep your brand supportive selfless and people will respond positively.