Who vs. How Many?
That was the content of one of Seth Godin’s recent blog posts, the title was:-
The more people you reach the more likely it is that you’re reaching the wrong people
It was a timely though very short post, I was still in the “collective thoughts” mode one usually is at the start of the new year, though mine was somewhat delayed by moving to a new house, and various internet connection difficulties.
My year really didn’t start until mid-January
Back in November I went through some of the strategic planning I would at least consider for social media marketing, in fact any online marketing.
Whilst Seth’s thinking in many ways defines niche marketing, what I was looking for was to reassess my niche and I came up with my own short form.
Customer vs Peers
This offers in many ways a perplexing contradiction – the content and social media interaction that might widen your reach by attracting peers at the same time might not be suitable for your customers. The content is effectively self-serving, not customer orientated.
The social media interaction might also be self-serving if it is centred around your peer group.
As an example it might be wrong for the BBC, Washington Post or New York Times to promote Digg, when their customers might find a better user experience on Propeller, Mixx or Delicious.
Which social news site should Microsoft promote?
I have made similar tough decisions recently – my most active social media activity unfortunately was not a good match for many of my customers, and many of my peers. It was self-serving.
By in depth metrics analysis of historical content, it is possible to determine which content was most suitable for your customers – a customer orientated approach to content development ultimately rewards the “who” and not the “how many”.
What is more valuable, a recommendation from a current or potential customer, or from a peer or professional colleague?
One strange though understandable phenomenon – customer orientated content seems more likely to attract links from customers than peers.