How to Find Your Target Audience on Social Media in 9 Steps

social media audience targeting

That elusive target audience. Who are they? Where are they? And more importantly, how can you find them? 

Facebook Ads Audiences For eCommerce: 9 Easy Steps For Success

As it turns out, one of the best ways to find your target audience is on social media. In today’s digital world, there’s a good chance a big part of your target audience spends some time on social media platforms. Now you just need to reach them!

Don’t miss the rest of this post if you want to find out how…

But first, let’s talk about exactly what we mean by the target audience.

What is a target audience?

A target audience is the group of people you want to buy/use/read/share, etc. your product or offer. 

Let’s say you sell hearing aids and you’re putting together an ad campaign to promote your product. 

You want these ads to be seen by the right people, AKA your target audience, or the people who are likely to be interested in them.

In this case, that’s likely people of a certain age. And age is just one of the demographic traits to consider when finding your target audience.

What are the different demographic traits?

  • Gender
  • Education
  • Age
  • Marital status
  • Location
  • Occupation
  • Interests
  • Socioeconomic status

Depending on your strategy, you may get really specific about each of these demographics. That’s a good way to go if your target audience is a really unique set of people. For example, targeting 18-21-year-olds. 

On the other hand, products or services that appeal to a broader group of people wouldn’t necessarily call for getting as specific with your demographics. For example, targeting 25-60-year-olds.

Other demographic traits can even include things like skills. How technologically-skilled is your target audience? Do they have kids? The more you know, the better!

Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning (STP)

A common strategy for getting to know your audience and determining who’s in your audience is a popular marketing tool known as Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning, or STP.

Segmenting: The first step of this model involves determining the demographics we just covered, as well as things like psychographics or behavioral variables, depending on how involved your strategy is!! 

Targeting: Next, the targeting step (what we’re focusing on today) has to do with reaching the segments you’ve defined. 

Positioning: Finally, the positioning step involves setting your company/product/service apart from the rest. It means positioning yourself in a way that’s attractive to your target audience. 

The STP method is just one marketing method that’s worth exploring when you’re marketing your business. Now, let’s apply the steps of this model to reach your target audience on social media. 

Reaching your target audience on social media: 9 steps

Now that we’ve talked about what exactly a target audience is, it’s time to focus on reaching them! More specifically, reaching them on social media.

And here’s some good news: we’ve already covered the most important step! Determining your target audience’s demographics.

Now it’s time to put them to work. 

Facebook ads

1. Determine your audience size

To find your audience on social media, you’ll also need to determine your audience size first.

You can do this quite easily on Facebook Ads Manager

Let’s say you want to reach men in Florida who are interested in riding lawnmowers. Using Facebook Ads Manager, you could determine 64,000 Facebook users match that audience.

If, however, Facebook shows this audience is incredibly small, it might be time to consider expanding your demographics. 

2. Get to know your current customers

Part of finding new customers means getting to know your existing customers or followers. One way of doing this is to distribute a survey on social media for your existing audience.

It could include questions like:

  • What do you like most about our product?
  • Which social media platforms do you utilize the most? 
  • Where are you most likely to shop for _______?
  • How did you find us?

You could also offer an incentive for completing the survey (maybe the chance to win a gift card or a product discount code), to encourage participation. 

competitive research how to

3. Do some research

The beauty of the internet means you can access virtually any information in just a few seconds. And that includes finding out everything you need to know about social media users to help you reach your target audience!

There are plenty of different resources and studies about the demographics of social media users, including their behavior, how they make decisions, etc. 

To start, have a read through The Demographics of Social Media Users from Pew Research Center. 

(While you’re there, don’t miss this post on 8 facts about Americans and Instagram either!)

4. Put your research to work and start connecting with your target audience

You’ve done the background work, and now you have the info you need to connect with your target audience on social media.

Most social media platforms let you upload your email database so you have a super quick way of connecting with existing subscribers or users. Then, you can start encouraging them to buy again/take another look. 

5. Create lookalike audiences

Once you’ve determined your target audience and possibly even uploaded your existing customers/audience, you can start creating lookalike audiences to reach even more people.

For example, Facebook can find users with the same or similar interests, demographics, etc. to add to your marketing efforts to reach an even bigger (yet still relevant) audience. 

6. Start reaching your target audience

Luckily, you know your target audience well by now. You’ve researched what they like, what they want, how they use social media and plenty of other important information. 

Now it’s time to start creating social media content geared toward them!

b2b retargeting on Facebook

7. Tailor social media content for your target audience

If your target audience is 15-18-year-olds, the content you create to reach them is going to look different than it would if you’re trying to reach 60-70-year-olds, right? 

But one thing’s for sure: creating engaging, relevant content is key! Your social media content needs to provide VALUE to users. And since you’ve done the research, you know what they value. 

Maybe you sell a home improvement product. You’ve determined your target audience is interested in home improvement tips. Creating social media posts with quick home improvement tips would be just one engaging option they’re likely to appreciate! 

After all, not every post should be all about SELLING to your target audience. 

You need to connect with them and establish trust and a relationship too. And providing high-value social media content is an incredible way to do this.

8. Creating ads

You know it can’t be all ads all the time, but there is certainly a time and place for using ads on social media. 

Lucky for you, we’ve got our secrets for professional Facebook ads design.

9. Reach your target audience with expert help

We know it’s tough to find the time to reach your target audience on social media, connect with them, engage with them, and even sell to them–you’ve got a lot going on! But we’re here to help.

Blue Water Marketing is a content marketing agency that specializes in lead generation, inbound and outbound marketing, sales nurturing, and account-based marketing. Not only can we help you find and define your target audience, but we’ve also got all the right tools and strategies in place to reach them. 

Let us put our expertise to work for you! Get in touch with us for a free consultation or learn more about our services here


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