How to create an effective social media audience profile

“What? We thought our audience was middle-aged women!” 

This was the exclamation from a client when we looked at the “People” tab on their Facebook page.  The demographics revealed a primary audience of 25-34 year olds.  Not what they expected, at all!

How well do you know your organisation’s social media audience?  How does your current audience compare with your target audience?  Have you even thought about your target audience?  You must. 

That’s a lot of questions, let’s get to some answers.

It’s personal

Social media is a very personal, targeted approach to communication.  It invites conversation and works best when the parties like and trust each other.  You have got to know each other, well.

Not-for-profit organisations, generally, understand the importance of client and supporter relationships.  Their success has always relied on strong community engagement in their purpose and a high level of trust.

This natural inclination to build relationships and trust puts you in the right frame for building engagement in your organisation’s social media communications.  You might only need some help finding the information necessary to create your audience profile.  This article offers you that help. 

Social media use in Australia

A great place to start in your quest to understand your social media audience is the Yellow Social Media Report.  This annual report, produced by Sensis, offers a wealth of information on how Australians engage with social media. 

Yellow Social Media Report 2020

The recently released 2020 report includes insights like:

  • Facebook is by far the most popular social media platform (89% use, followed by Instagram at 54%)
  • People mostly check their social media in the evening, at home, while watching TV
  • Over half of respondents say they are more likely to trust brands if they interact positively with customers on social media, make their content engaging and relevant, and keep it regularly updated
  • Thirty-one percent of respondents check their social profiles across a range of platforms more than 10 times a day – and 79% check at least once a day.

Take a closer look through the Report to learn more about social media use in Australia, and gain insights into your target audience.  

Insights into your existing social media audience

Have you visited the back end of your organisation’s Facebook page recently?  The “Insights” tab holds useful information about your current audience. 

Within a few clicks you can see which of your posts has the highest reach, most engagement and most reactions.  You can also see when your audience is looking at your page (make sure you adjust the time-zone from Pacific to AEST!), what days of the week people tend to engage with your page and what cities they live in.

Lots of information is available to you from the Insights tab on your Facebook page

If you look at the “People” menu, you will soon see the age profile of your audience.  You will also know whether your content is reaching more people who identify as women, or men.

These insights can be affirming, or surprising, as they were for my client! 

Profiling your target social media audience

Facebook Insights helps you understand the demographics and behaviours of your current social media audience.

However, you need to also think about your target audience – those new people you want to engage with your organisation. 

Thinking carefully about who currently responds to your social media content, the behaviours of Australian social media consumers generally and the sorts of characteristics held by people in your organisation’s supporter base, will give you the information you need to create a useful target audience profile. 

Creating a target audience profile gives you the clarity you need to communicate with impact, authenticity, and empathy.  Your messages will be far more engaging when you know who you are talking to.

For more on social media planning, check out our previous blog, the Five Ws

And, if you still have questions, please contact Big Bang Social for a chat.  We’re always happy to provide advice to Canberra’s not-for-profit and for-purpose organisations.

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