Target Marketing For Social Media Tribes

Every marketer knows that targeting a narrow niche of potential customers produces better results than “shot gun” marketing that targets no identifiable group. But usually target marketing is translated to mean targeting a demographic(age, gender, education, income, etc.)

However a different way of targeting is to target a group by affiliation or interests. This is why, for example, sports teams market their jerseys or banners across a broad spectrum of demographics. Their fans cannot be grouped by age, gender, and so forth, it is their common interests that set them apart. They are a Tribe, not a demographic group.

This all came to mind when I read, or actually re-read, an article in called, “Building Complementary Services: A Powerful Long-Term Social Media Marketing Strategy.” by Maki.

Users of various social media platforms are tribes also, and can be almost as fanatical in their devotion to their platform as any sports fan. Some are Digg users, some are Facebook groupies and others proudly label themselves as “Twits.”

And all these social media tribes are looking for ways to enhance their experience using their social media platform of choice. As Maki says,

A powerful social media marketing strategy is to create a service, tool, system which perfectly complements, facilitates and improves each individual users experience of the specific social website. Think of the features that unite them and the problems that frustrate them. This creation must be almost indispensable and extremely useful to a very broad audience.

To a degree, I experienced this last week with my article called, 62 Twitter Marketing Tips and Ideas. It was probably my most popular article ever, it was tweeted and retweeted all weekend and received more hits than anything I’ve ever written for this blog.

Other factors for making it popular are probably the fact that it was a list (an extremely popular format for any type of article) and the fact that its title indicated it was a long list (which told the reader that it contained a lot of information). Moreover, as it got retweeted, it took on social proof because people saw that others were saying kind things about my information (for which I thank all of you who made such kind comments).

Maki uses the example of the teenage millionaire, Ashley Qualls, who created a site that offered free layouts for MySpace users. Ashley targeted the tribe of fellow teenage girls who were MySpace fanatics like herself. She created background designs that enhanced their experience of using the platform, and in so doing reaped millions of advertising dollars from companies that wanted to reach that group as well.

It all comes back to quality content. But in this case, quality content that certain social media tribes find indispensable.

What types of content can you create for such a tribe? It can be a service or tool to make the users’ experience better, or it can be an article that shows them how to gain more friends and contacts, or it can be a how-to video that solves a vexing problem.

The point of all this is that such a tribe is a group well worth targeting if you can deliver what they want and need.

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