Knowing and understanding your target market is possibly the most important part of running a successful business. Establishing a direct line of communication with this group is vital. They are the people who are most likely to shell out money for your products or services, so make friends with them. And the best way to make customer connections? Think like they do!
Start with a Customer Profile
Creating a customer profile is a way to personify your ideal customer. Also known as customer persona or avatar, this is a compilation of the things that make up your target market. By defining the ideal customer, you can more effectively target advertising. This helps you understand your customers, including what they want, what they need, and what they’ll respond to. The profile is built by compiling information on such things as age, geographical location, income, job, interests, etc. You can then categorize profiles for marketing and advertising purposes.
When it comes to building customer connections through profiles, Google Analytics can tell you a lot. Find information on the age of your visitors, their location, and the device they used to access your website. You can also see which channels drive more traffic so you can capitalize on your effort to reach your TM. A customer profile can guide your marketing efforts by determining the best messaging, offers, products, and services to deliver to attract your ideal client.
Where’s the Action?
Where is your TM hanging out? Figuring this out means you can insert yourself into that group, making customer connections. You’ll gain valuable insights and maybe also find places to post content or buy advertising space. Here are some ways to suss out your TM:
- See who’s following you and also who else they’re following. Then make a Venn diagram to find the crossover.
- Take a closer look at what terms your target audience is searching for with some keyword research. There are tools for that!
- Use related keywords to see what pops up on autofill. This will give you an idea of what else people are searching.
- Find groups and organizations related to your field and join up. Make yourself a presence in your industry.
- Participate in chats and forums talking about your product or service. Even if people aren’t talking about your business, the material will still be useful.
Insert Yourself Into the Conversation
Yes, we all like to complain sometimes, but ultimately we just want to be heard. Taking the time to listen, and respond, goes a long way in making customer connections. A good place to start listening is when a customer contacts your business directly. If you get a message of any sort—email, website feedback, social media tag, phone call—make sure you respond. Even just acknowledging the message, which should be done within 24 hours, is a step in the right direction. But aim to resolve the complaint or say thanks for the kudos, depending on the message.
Another way to engage is to make direct customer connections. Encourage UGC, ask for feedback, and request testimonials. Post surveys on Twitter and Facebook, soliciting answers to the questions that will help you serve customers better. Customer satisfaction surveys are one of the most useful tools for business. The bottom line is that most people have something to say and will appreciate the chance to be heard. Find out what your customers like and keep up the good work! Then improve on the areas where you fall short.
Use social media to find out more about your TM. Once you make this customer connection, you can respond with the information and answers they’re after. Have a look at your feeds to see what posts people liked and shared most. Post similar content, giving them a reason to return again and again. You can also piggyback on related hashtags followed by the TM to make your content more visible in their feeds.
An email list is an important resource for any business. Use your address book but don’t abuse it! Send out information that’s useful, relevant, and desirable. Don’t spam your contacts or you may risk irritating them and driving away business. If you’re going to send an email, make it something they want to read and give them the opportunity to respond.
Customer Connections Creeper
Okay. Maybe avoid being a creeper or a spy, but be aware of your reputation. Pay attention to what people are saying about your business. Search your company hashtag or hashtags related to your field, read reviews, and peruse social media for mentions. And look at what people say about your competitors to recognize things you’re doing well or areas where you need improvement.
One way to keep track of what’s being said about your business is through media monitoring services or social listening tools. These services notify you when your business is mentioned online. Here are a few examples:
Meltwater is a PR and social media monitoring tool. This higher-end option allows managers to interact on social media, curate content, track competitors, and analyze the success of their efforts.
Mention helps you keep tabs on when and where your company gets, well, mentioned. The program will send you a notification every time there’s a name drop.
Google Alerts keep track of indexing, other sites linking to your content, and company mentions. This free service also allows you to monitor competitors.
Build Customer Connections with Video
Above all, LISTEN to your customers! They’ll give you all sorts of information, both solicited and unsolicited. Once you’ve connected with your target market and you know what they want, video is a great way to show them that they’ve been heard. For example, if you keep getting questions about how your service works, why not put an explainer video on your website? A whopping 97% of businesses using explainer videos say it helps users understand their business better. Connect with Key West Video today to find out how we can help you with customer connections.