Seven in ten. Seven in ten adults are on Facebook, that means seven out of ten of your customers are, too. And it’s not just Facebook.
Social media is playing a larger and larger role in people’s personal and commercial lives. If you aren’t part of your customer’s online experience you are missing out on myriad opportunities to connect with them.
A recent report on Internet usage from Pew Research found that “fully 71% of online adults use Facebook, a proportion unchanged from August 2013. Usage among seniors continues to increase. Some 56% of internet users ages 65 and older now use Facebook, up from 45% who did so in late 2013 and 35% who did so in late 2012.” Women are especially likely to be on the networking site.
Twitter is used by nearly one quarter of adults who are online. It’s especially popular with people under 50 and the college educated. Many people leave the site open like a news-ticker all day at work or check it multiple times throughout the day.
Your customers are online and they are on social networks. By identifying which sites your target demographic is most likely to be using you can build a strategy to reach them where they are.
For instance, if your target customer is in the Millennial generation – or you’re looking to reach them for the launch of a new product or service – you’re likely to find them on Instagram. The photo-sharing network is used by over half of adults aged 18-29, an increase of over 15% from just 2013.
Women of all ages are using Pinterest, a sort of online corkboard, to collect tips, inspiration and ideas in all different areas from food to fashion to finance. It’s an especially popular network for suburban residents at all income levels. Building a presence on Pinterest can help you build a bigger customer base one pin at a time.
And, while you may predominantly think of LinkedIn as a place to have your online resume and connect with coworkers, it can also serve as a platform to share content that establishes you as an expert in your field. It is “particularly popular among college graduates, those in higher-income households and the employed” – likely the types of people you’d like to have as customers.
With 52% of online adults using at least two social networks being on one platform is no longer enough. Building an integrated, multi-platform social media strategy can help your brand become a part of your customers’ daily lives. Now, instead of them having to pass your store or see your ad on TV, you can easily meet them where they are with a pin or tweet, a post on Facebook or Instagram.
It’s important to provide your audience with quality content – in other words, give them a reason to follow you. That may mean tips and expert advice, or it could be promotions, contests, and coupons only listed on social media.
You can also ask your customers to share their content with you – their photos or experiences with your products or services are some of the best advertisements and testimonials to influence new customers with.
By creating a presence online you can turn your customers into a community and your audience into your best advertisements.
David S. Buddingh is founder and partner in Buddingh & Associates, Inc., an award-winning strategic marketing consulting firm in Naperville, IL. Contact him at (630) 961-4504 or visit BuddinghAssociates.com.