3 Ways to Reach New Consumers with Social Media

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By Candie Harris

New users are the lifeblood of every brand. Whether you are in the early, middle or late phase of your product life cycle, the ability to attract new consumers is vital to keeping your sales growing. Here are three ways which social media can help you target and attract new buyers for your product and increase awareness of your brand.

Social Listening

Tapping into trends, postings and conversations on social networks is a great place to start when identifying potential new targets for your product. There are a number of analytical tools available today to help you listen on a macro level. Here is a great summary from G2 to help you evaluate which one might be best for your specific needs.  

However, there are times when you may want an approach to help you connect one on one. Twitter is a great tool to help you do that easily. You may want to start by following and/or searching your competition to see what they are talking about or who they are talking to.

As an example, if my product is Verizon, and I am following Sprint, I can monitor complaints about Sprint and proactively reach out to those consumers.

You can also use keywords on twitter to uncover potential consumers that might be a good match based on their lifestyle. If my product is the Corkcicle Vinnebagoit keeps beverages chilled while on the goand I searched the word "picnic," I would uncover people who love picnics, and who potentially would have a use for my product.

 
 

Social Content

Similar to social listening, social content can be a great source of insights on likely new consumers for your product. By using Pinterest’s search capabilities, you will be able to see a visual display of your own product, your competitor’s products, and similar products. I was amazed when I tried this approach for an "old" product like a stapler. Searching for staplers on Pinterest yielded pages of amazing images, with so many ideas for potential new targets. From this small sample below, you can see two new types of consumers can be tested: people looking for stocking stuffer ideas and people looking to redecorate their homes. 

 
 

Social Advertising

Due to the fact that Facebook is still the most widely used social network, combined with its’ incredible targeting capabilities, it is the most effective way to reach new users. A recent article in Businessweek tells how individuals are using Facebook advertising to sell custom T-shirts targeted to individuals' passions and things that they love. There are many, many ways to use to Facebook’s powerful ad platform, so here is one simple idea.  By simply entering the email addresses of your current users into Facebook, you can create an attractive targeting group called a "custom audience." After inputting these emails, you can strategically communicate with them via Facebook's ad platform or create a "lookalike audience" that shares similar characteristics as your custom audience. This is a great way to build a prospective audience segment.  If you don’t have email addresses, you can either survey your current customers, or infer as to their interest areas, and then feed that data into Facebook. These look-alikes will have similar demographics and lifestyle interests as your present customers, and they can then be cost-effectively reached with your messaging. You can A/B test various content strategies with small subsets of the audience first, in order to insure that your message resonates.

The ways to use social media to increase your presence among potential new consumers are endless. What techniques have you found effective?