Because two audiences are better than one.
As we’ve written time and again, brand publications serve as incredibly useful marketing collateral — they increase brand awareness, showcase your company’s credibility, and establish your position as a thought leader in your field.
Of course, the primary goal of any good brand publication is to reach your target audience and expand your customer base. But when it comes to brand publishing, it’s essential to note that you’re writing for not one audience, but two: your social media audience, and your search engine audience. Despite some initial similarities, these two audiences are totally unique – and your strategy for reaching them should be, too!
The Scoop on Search vs. Social Audiences
People who find your company via search engine tend to be savvy consumers who have a very specific idea of what they want. For that reason, this kind of audience is generally high in intent (i.e. more likely to buy whatever you’re selling), but low in volume. The more specific their search phrase, the more serious they’ll tend to be about your product and therefore to convert.
People who stumble upon your site via social media, on the other hand, are generally just looking to pass the time, and therefore tend to be fairly low in intent but high in volume (assuming you have a solid social media strategy). Although they might just be browsing when they first visit your site, the longer you can keep your social audience engaged and clicking through, the more likely it is that they will eventually make a purchase.
Bigger Isn’t Always Better
It might seem counterintuitive to market your brand publication to a smaller audience, but hear us out. With both social and search audiences, as consumers’ informational needs become increasingly specific and their needs become more niche, your total addressable market will certainly shrink. But when you crunch the numbers, small, motivated audiences like these have a much higher purchasing power, since they’re infinitely more driven to purchase in the first place.
Therefore, when you’re putting together your digital marketing plans, it’s not sufficient to market simply to high-intent or low-intent audiences — instead, it’s vital to market to both. Although it’s tempting to solely target the larger, traffic-heavy social media audience, without a motivated search audience, you won’t really be bolstering your business results. Similarly, it’s silly to put all your SEO money into extremely niche keywords. Yes, you’ll see a higher conversion rate, but you’ll be missing out on an enormous amount of traffic, and therefore an enormous amount of visibility.
The Balancing Act
Of course, marketing simultaneously to low- and high-intent audiences is no easy feat. It requires a great deal of thoughtful planning to balance a truly comprehensive digital marketing campaign. But we can’t overstate the importance of achieving this balance: without focusing on the bigger picture — i.e. both social and search audiences — it will be exceedingly difficult to get your publication off the ground.
By working smart, and targeting the members of both audiences who are most likely to move from low to high intent, you’ll be able to create a balanced, effective marketing (and remarketing) strategy. And remember, if at first you don’t succeed, think about who you’re selling to! If your content is written with a specific audience in mind, you’re much more likely to catch their attention.
Longneck and Thunderfoot offer content marketing services and strategies to transform your company blog into an authoritative trade publication. Click to learn more about how to produce great content and prove ROI on your marketing efforts.