How and why you should market differently to different social media platforms

Business, Sales,  Principals,  Salespeople

As social media becomes ever more popular, and commercial TV continues its decline in the age of online streaming, advertisers are shifting their focus away from the television in favour of Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

Targeting various audiences with television marketing involves choosing timeslots and programs to advertise within, but social media may be more complex.

Rather than associating advertising material with programming, social media employs targeted advertising based off of what kind of content users are interacting with. As a result, your company’s advertising should already be finding its way to its intended audience.

Users who have been looking at house listings, for example, will be shown advertisements for real estate agencies.

However, that doesn’t mean your marketing can be done with a blanket approach. There are a handful of very popular social media platforms, and they all tend to attract different demographics.

As such, marketing should be tailored to those demographics, depending on which platform is being used.

Aislinn Dwyer, REIQ’s Media and Communications Coordinator, says it’s largely intuitive.

“You wouldn’t use the same advertisement for print or outdoor advertising as you would for online,” she says.

“The same goes for social media.

“Not only do different platforms have different specifications and word counts, they also have vastly different tones (casual vs professional) and different age groups using them.”

Dwyer says marketing differently might involve targeting a paid ad to a specific audience who uses Facebook regularly, but realising that the same advertisement might not be appropriate for LinkedIn or Instagram.

Identifying those different audiences can mostly be done with research, as there have already been studies that identify who uses which platform.

The majority of these studies focus on age and sex, however, which are not always driving factors in marketing direction.

For example, LinkedIn is a more professional platform, so even younger users may balk at an advertisement that is overly silly – even if they would resonate with it if it appeared on their Instagram feed.

To truly tailor your marketing, Dwyer says it’s important to analyse your customer base – both existing and potential.

“Who are your followers, where do they live, how old are they, and what are their interests?” she says.

“Most social media platforms have an easy-to-use analytics feature for business pages, which helps you to understand what time your key audiences are online, making it easier to know when to post updates.”

Employing a ‘set and forget’ approach to marketing may reduce overhead, but you run the risk of achieving little to no engagement from social media.

There’s little use having an entire two or three months of advertising and content lined up and scheduled for posting if that marketing material is already falling flat today.

“It’s important to constantly check in with your analytics and feedback from your followers,” says Dwyer.

“And ask yourself – am I posting for the sake of posting, or am I posting to provide valuable content to my followers which, in turn, may draw in potential clients?”

Uploading content to social media channels may be ‘free’ advertising, but if said content is failing to resonate with consumers, it’s ultimately a waste of time that could be much better spent on prospecting, or on delving into analytics to produce better content in future.

In real estate, time is money, and being able to produce marketing material that is tailored to specific audiences across your various social media platforms will help to ensure that it’s actually hitting the mark – making those hours spent on marketing much more fruitful.