The content you produce and post depends on your audience, but in general needs to be original and establish you as a thought leader in your field.

Understanding your demographic will ultimately determine what social media platforms you should use to promote your business, says The Content Folk co-founder and strategist Nicole Kersh. In fact, your target audience influences all marketing decisions you’ll need to make, from product development to sales and promotion.

What content should we be producing? 

Before you begin planning your content marketing campaign, you should be analysing your audience’s interests, online reading habits and other important information to help you understand their needs and demands, and as a result the kind of content you could be creating, says Kersh.

The content you produce and post depends on your audience, but in general needs to be original and establish you as a thought leader in your field. Curated content on a relevant subject is also useful to the consumer, as it can save them from searching through the cluttered online space looking for the information they require.

Before you start creating content, it’s worth finding out more about the top five content marketing mistakes and how you can avoid making them.

Then you’ll need to create fresh, relevant and high quality content, and share it across social networks. That way your company can start to become the place your audience goes to first to get information on a chosen subject, says Kersh.

What’s our typical customer profile?

Just as your content depends greatly on your demographic, the social media platforms you adopt should align with your customers – their age, gender, interests and whether they prefer to read articles or look at visually appealing images or videos. Once you’ve identified your demographic, creating tailor-made content for your target audience is easy.

Facebook’s personal profiles are a firsthand way of seeing your customers’ own ‘self-summary’ of who they are and what pages they like, says Kersh. This will give you a snapshot of what types of people are connecting with your brand.

And while LinkedIn is predominantly a networking space for professionals, it can provide a useful insight into the interests of various groups and associations that your customers might be aligned with.  

Similarly, Twitter signals people’s interests, for example who and what they are following and retweeting. “It’s like looking at what your customer has dog-eared in their reading,” says Kersh.  

Free tools such as Quantcast can provide measurements of audience demographics, providing you with an understanding of the people behind the statistics. After all, it’s all very well knowing how much traffic your site gets, but it’s even better to know what makes each individual who clicks on your pages tick.

Detailed demographic, geographic and lifestyle data gives you the best understanding of your mobile, web and mobile app audiences. These sorts of tools can help you find and attract new customers and interpret how they move between your platforms.

Another useful tool is Quick Sprout, a website analyser that can compare your site to your competitors’ and illuminate your customers’ interests to help you focus on identifying and attracting valuable audiences to your business.

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