“My goal is to get 80,000 followers on Instagram.”
A recent client comment prompted me to write a LinkedIn post that went viral. Likes, followers, pageviews, downloads: it’s tempting to focus on social metrics when doing social media marketing. The implication is so alluring: Increased brand awareness! New customers! More sales! The potential for my brand to go viral and blow up!
But these social metrics are pure vanity, and they’re disconnected from real numbers that drive growth: conversion, revenue, retention, customer lifetime value (CLV) and customer acquisition cost (CAC). ✨
LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and other social media platforms can be fantastic brand awareness drivers, and can be powerful marketing tools. But what actually converts customers and builds loyalty for your business? You can have great brand awareness, but if people aren’t buying, you’ve got the Emperor’s New Clothes situation going on.
In working with my clients, I counsel them to:
📌 Choose evangelists over numbers. You don’t need 80,000 followers. You need a handful of deeply loyal customers who love your brand so much, they’ll be your voluntary marketing department and evangelize your brand to their network.
📌 Be choosy. Remember that you don’t want brand awareness from anyone; you want it from that segment that deeply and disproportionately values what you offer. You can’t please all masters. Keep your brand broad to accommodate everyone, and you’ll dilute the strength of your offering. This article has more insights into why you want to target.
📌 Hyper-focus. Hone your communications strategy and message to focus solely on your ideal customers as if they’re the only ones that matter – because they are the only ones that matter. Address their acute and specific pain and how your solution helps to solve that.
📌 Surprise & delight. If you can’t be all things to all people, you might as well be special to someone. Evaluate your best customers and what they deeply value that you offer. Focus your energies on making and delivering a promise so beyond what’s expected, they can’t help but be surprised & delighted.
📌 Build love. Once they’ve become a customer, continue to build your relationship with them. In what ways can you constantly offer value, so that you win them over and they shower you with repeat business?
You want to focus on what actually grows your business. Social media networks want you to focus on social metrics like increasing your followers or driving likes, because it makes their platforms “sticky” and keeps you engaged on their site. But it’s important to ask if those social metrics grow your business and are worth your investment. Many times, you’re chasing empty numbers that don’t materialize into sales.
Net: you want to build a community of customers who appreciate and value your offerings. If that turns out to be a small, loyal base, that’s perfectly fine. Forget the social metrics and focus on the numbers that matter – those that grow your business’ success.