If you have a tool to keep contact data accurate, every single piece of contact information can offer your brand a real-time snapshot of a customer.
A basic analysis of contact data reveals:
- The audience actually engaged with your product (beyond “persona” predictions)
- The common career tracks of people most likely to want your product (including their resulting daily struggles)
- The kinds of content your audience wants to read
- How your audience should be targeted
All from contact records. Do I have your attention yet?
How to Build a Better Social Media Team
Armed with little more than accurate customer records — name, phone, email, title, and company — and Google, you can create sophisticated, highly-targeted social marketing strategies that move the needle.
All it takes is a little legwork (read: Excel), brainpower, and time.
Step 1: Export and Sort Your Accurate Customer Contact Data
Start by exporting a clean list of customer contacts from Salesforce, or whatever other contact manager, CRM, or marketing automation software you might be using. If you have the option, it’s ideal to export to Excel to get maximum manipulability of the data.
Once you’ve done this, sort by any of your key fields. Title and company offer the most relevant results.
- When sorting by title…You’ll get a sense of which roles your product is most applicable to.
- When sorting by company…You’ll uncover data around which industries you appeal to most and which particular companies within those are not yet customers (by their omission in your results).
Step 2: Interpret Your Findings
Once you have your data sorted in a way that’s meaningful to you, dig in and interpret it.
If you’re more interested in getting insight toward content creation and brand messaging, use a combination of role and industry analysis to pinpoint the top 3-4 roles within each industry.
However, if you’re more interested in targeting, identify the relevant industries, the missing companies, and decision-maker contact info in companies like those missing — i.e. if Coca Cola is missing from your list but you have Pepsi, make a note of Pepsi’s relevant decision-making team’s contact info for later lookalike targeting.)
Step 3: Use Induction to Learn More About Potential Audiences
Once you’ve completed your analysis, you’ll know which roles at which companies in which industries are the most relevant to you. You’ll also have a list of companies in relevant industries that should be using your product but aren’t.
It’s a perfect starting point for a little inductive reasoning.
Here are some questions you’ll want to take into account during your inductive journey through Google and Facebook.
Based on the most common roles of your customers, what are their pain points? What do their daily professional lives look like? How can you address that in your content strategy?
Based on common roles and common industries, is there anything in particular that makes your product more appropriate for one role or industry than another? What social messaging would be necessary to expand your reach?
Why have you been successful with common industries and current companies? Which elements of your current social strategy have resonated?
Why haven’t you reached missing companies yet? What elements of your current strategy may interfere with their acquisition?
Once you answer these questions, you’ll be more equipped to deliver strong, data-driven pieces for your social strategy, from large-scale, industry-based ideas down to granular, customer-based messaging suggestions.
Step 4: Apply Your Learnings to Social
Now the fun part: using your data-drive hypotheses to transform social strategy into a meaningful business driver.
Here are the different areas that your newfound data can inform:
- Post Content: Because you now have an excellent idea of exactly the kind of person your product is most relevant to, you can tailor your voice and messaging accordingly. If you curate content as well (and you should), rethink your sources to ensure that you’re pushing the most relevant content to your different audience types.
- Blog Content: Now that you have a solid idea of who you’re trying to attract and how they can be attracted, research, write, infographic-ize, and publish appropriately.
- Publishing Schedule: Because you’ve likely discovered that your audience is a bit different than you imagined, you need to get your social publishing in sync with your new targets. Research their workdays, understand their habits, and attack.
- General Messaging: Based on your customer findings, you should have a crystal clear idea of which messaging is working and which isn’t. If you’re looking to expand adoption into different roles or industries, tweak your less effective messages for analysis the next time you undergo one of these.
- Paid Targeting: Remember those lookalike audiences I mentioned earlier? This is where they shine. Based on the data you’ve received, you have the opportunity to run 2 types of lookalike campaigns:
- Lookalikes of people most likely to become your customers (based on your role/industry analysis)
- Micro-targeted campaigns toward decision-makers who should be using you but aren’t
For either, simply upload the appropriate emails as lookalike audiences in Facebook and Twitter, and you’ll ensure you’re delivering to exactly the people most likely to give your product a try.