Congratulations! Today’s Awesome Prize!
Free Social Media Bootcamp Module One! Finding Your Tribe!
Being active on all social media platforms might seem like a wonderful plan, but it is unnecessary and counter-productive. It’s inefficient, exhausting and usually ends up with you spread too thin: As J. R. R. Tolkien so graphically explained it, “like butter scraped over too much bread”.
Better to find out which specific social platforms your ideal tribe operates within, and concentrates your efforts there.
There are three ways to go about this so that you do not making any incorrect assumptions, nor miss a potentially powerful social group:
- Checking social platform stats and demographics
- Checking out competitor social media presences
- Checking out Facebook and/or LinkedIn Groups
Only when you have done this homework should you then select the top 1-3 platforms that are most responsive and concentrate the majority of your social media networking on those limited platforms.
Before taking a look at how to make a choice, let’s quickly recap the main social media platforms that can help you build your ideal, responsive community…
Step One: “What Social Platforms am I Missing?”
Top networks like Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest number users in multiple millions. YouTube exceeds them all at 1.5 billion, and Mark Zuckerberg announced at the end of June, 2017, that Facebook topped 2 billion users.
But just how relevant is this data to you? With user numbers at huge magnitudes for each platform, won’t you get lost in the crowd—kind of like a grain of sand in an ocean?
Yes … unless you are highly specific in:
- Identifying the right potential audience member types
- Targeting so that they find you
Once you have identified them, start hanging out online with them and sharing carefully targeted, but authentic, content—interest-specific posts, infographics, image quotes, polls, inspirational posts, selective personal posts, videos and the like—so they will not only be able to recognize who you are and what you’re all about, but also look forward to your presence too.
It’s not just about the numbers. If you check the stats on various platforms, you’ll quickly find out that each platform attracts different demographics. For instance, Instagram tends to attract younger women, Pinterest is nearly all female but attracts older women than Instagram, Twitter is going after business these days—as well as being a favorite of authors of all shapes and sizes—and YouTube is a whole different story, being segmented quite specifically. For example, according to MediaKix, 37% of individuals aged 18-34 are “binge-watching”, 62% of millennials are likely to take action after watching a YouTube video or videos, YouTube reaches 95% of all adults age 35-55, and males and females are almost equally represented, though heavily split between specific categories.
Here’s a quick overview on the main social networks for coaches, entrepreneurs and authors today, in descending order of user numbers:
But here’s the real qualifier: It doesn’t matter if YouTube has over 1.5 billion users if 95% of your particular audience predominantly communicates via Twitter or some other network. That’s why it’s important to identify and market to the right networks.
Step Two: Checking Social Stats and Demographics
Algorithms change, rules change and social platforms are in a state of constant flux. That’s why it’s better to conduct your own real-time primary research instead of relying on secondary research such as searching Google for blog posts. You can do this by investing in or subscribing to statistics and SEO apps and websites such as Alexa, which allows you to compare data from other social sites, as well as your competitors.
Statistical analysis is now not only big business, with stats analysis companies charging thousands for their services, it’s also complex and hard to decipher for the average online marketer or coach. On top of that, many formerly great tools, sites and apps—Squabbel, for example—have fallen by the wayside, put out of business by Google, who is the undisputed leader and controller of what’s available on the net.
Another fact of social media platforms is that stats and demographics change very quickly. For example, it has always been accepted that Pinterest consists of a predominantly female audience—but as of time of writing, Pinterest is announcing in its own demographic info that “50%+ of new signups are men” (following their own preferred categories, which are different from female ones.)
The best way to keep up on social changes: Follow the official blogs for each social platform and keep up with their own stats pages, analytics dashboards and insights. That’s where you’ll get all the latest audience shifts.
Here they are:
Far more helpful than heavy statistics is doing your own primary research. Spend time on each of the top networks and see if your ideal clients—and closest competitors—are maintaining an active presence there. Compare your own analytics on each network with your competitor’s Page or Group—and see how active they are.
Step Three: Checking Out Your Competitor Social Activity
Check out your competitors and see where they are concentrating their efforts and getting the most response. Chances are good if your biggest competitor is spending lots of time on LinkedIn, there’s a reason for it.
Also check out major influencers in your sub-niche and field. Where are they most active? What posts from other networks do their followers share?
Checking out competitor and influencer websites and look for social sharing buttons will give you the easiest and most direct way to find them on all platforms where they are active.
Finally, there are tools you can use. Klear Pro is a platform that starts at $249.00 USD per month, but you can generate powerful results with its free tools. Search by skill and specify categories and it will generate 10 results by platform, skill and the category chosen (e.g. Power Users on Instagram in Business Consulting).
And for powerful comparisons between your page and your competitors’ pages, use the absurdly easy Fanpage Karma.
If you just want to analyze your own page (or one page), it is free—but for more than one, pricing starts at 49.00 euros ($57.62 USD at time of writing).
When you study competitors’ social feeds and pages, look for the types of posts that generate:
- Hot, ongoing activity
- Personal stories
And don’t just read. Really pay attention to the valuable data you acquire. Make notes on all these relevant strategies and topics. Make notes about the posts your ideal audience most actively responds to—and use those types in your own social marketing.
STEP Four: The Group Phenomenon—What it Can Do For You
Joining Facebook or LinkedIn Groups can provide invaluable insights you won’t get any other way—in real-time, face-to-face interaction. This especially holds true if you join a closed or secret Group, where members feel much freer to be their true, authentic selves. These are the groups where they will express doubts, frustrations and fears—those priceless “pain points” on which you can create products to solve the pain. It is where they will state what they need, admit to weaknesses, trust and befriend.
Closed or secret groups are innately exclusive—just like a sorority or fraternity at a particular university. Active group members develop a bond with each other that leads to helpful behaviors such as:
- Higher responses to polls, surveys, blog links and calls to action
- Joint venturing opportunities
- Beta testing and split-testing opportunities
- Bonding and friendships
- Brand building (if you are careful and strategic)
Notice we said active group members. To count as active, you will need to visit and engage at least once per day. That’s when they remember you, start to trust you and turn to you for help.
And, of course, starting your own Group is a great way to build your community and attract more fans.
Even if you start with just a few members, these are the people who will help you get to know them—and therefore be able to appeal to and reach others just like them.
Just make sure you are present in your Group—and responding with helpful insights and encouragement—every day.
Step Five: Five Secret Weapons for Social Media Marketing
Certain tools, tips and resources become fashionable for those engaged in social media marketing. There are usually good reasons for this—apps that get powerful results, tools that are easy to use, visuals that are a feast for the eyes, and so forth. But take the time to try other tips and tools. You may find one that works better for you and your preferences, or for your business needs: Ones that can help you target and reach your ideal follower—and build your tribe.
Here are five resources you may not have yet met or considered.
Putting out the right content and targeting the right audience may not feel sexy, but it’s absolutely essential in attracting the people you want. Finding your tribe is not just about finding them: It’s about engaging and retaining them too. These strategies and tools will all help you further that goal.