You Must Understand Your Target Market to Effectively Reach Your Audience. Questions to Ask Your COI’s for Research Gathering.
In my previous blog, “Before beginning a social media campaign, you must develop a focused marketing plan,” I mentioned reaching out to your COI’s for guidance when deciding the markets you want to focus on for your business. As promised, I’ve listed some sample questions that you may want to ask during your phone conversation or meeting with each of your COI’s. Remember that you can never have too much information regarding how each market communicates, which events and meetings you should attend, and who should know to gain entry into the market.
Gain access through associations.
The following questions are with the assumption that you are asking these questions to a member of an association’s board, or an established and active member:
- How many members does your association have locally?
- Do you meet often? Where do you meet and when?
- Do you encourage outside speakers on topics of interest to your membership? (This would give you an idea if you would be able to add value to the group by speaking to its members.)
- How do members find out about the association?
- What are the demographics of your current members?
- What do members of your association value most about belonging?
- What are some of the trade publications and newsletters you and your members read?
- What is the best approach to build relationships with your members, and becoming a resource?
- What would you say are some of the biggest concerns of your members? (This information would provide you with ideas of how your business can help alleviate these concerns.)
- If applicable: Would you be willing to allow my company to help with those concerns if there is a fit?
- Who are considered the more influential members of your association? (Ask for an introduction.)
- Would you allow me to use your name when speaking with one or more of your members?
- If applicable: How can I become more involved in your organization? Is there a board or advisory position that I could apply for?
Ask your COI to learn about his or her own business as it pertains to your target market.
- Depending on your business, your questions should include the executive structure of the business, type of business, the marketing techniques and methods currently being used, top competitors and why, and concerns (if any) of the corporation.
- Take detailed notes so that you can discuss with them how you can help.
Ask your COI to give you feedback.
Most individuals do not turn someone way when asked for help. A good method to use to not only gauge your approach methods, but to also inquire about some form of professional relationship, is to ask for help.
- Ask your COI if you may inform them of what you have to offer and your background, and in return ask if they would give you feedback on who they think could benefit from you. If you have a tailored approach based on what you have learned, many times it is your COI who will tell you that they are interested. If it is not them, they most likely will have referrals for you based on what they have learned about you during your meeting.
What does this all mean for your social media campaign implementation?
When you have completed your research of your target market, you can now be more intentional with your posts on the various social media platforms. But, you may be wondering which platforms you should be using based on your target market, and how to be most effective.
In my next post, I will be discussing the importance of keywords, how to identify your keywords, what to do with these keywords, and how to discover the many social media sites available.
Remember, because there are so many sites available to you, that you should simply start with the top three (3) for now: LinkedIn (more professional and business oriented), Facebook (more relationship building related), and Twitter (in 140 characters you must deliver your message effectively.)
Until next time!
Marketing and public relations strategist assisting businesses by filling the marketing and public relations gap. Want to learn more about how we can help you grow your business?
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