By Stacy Spahle
We all remember in school that if you wanted to participate, you raised your hand. It was a response to a question or perhaps to add to a discussion, but it was a part of a structured dialog format we learned early on in our lives. In today’s digital world, sometimes we forget to engage with our audiences and begin the dialogue. We bypass the inquiry and interest phase and jump straight to trying to sell something to a contact or follower we haven’t engaged with.
Much like the pushy car salesman that doesn’t let you out of your vehicle before he starts spouting off random sales information on a vehicle you don’t want, you are turned off. Engaging your audience by asking them to ‘raise their hand’ if they are interested in what you have to offer is a better way to start the relationship.
Recently, CEO & Founder of ActionCOACH, Brad Sugars outlined the basics of ‘Raise Your Hand’ Marketing in a webinar. In this session he identified the steps and process to ensure your social media posts become a magnet for engagement and ultimately turn suspects into prospects.
Sugars starts by setting the stage and defining Marketing from his point of view. “Marketing is the process of profitably buying lifetime customers”. With this unique prospective in mind, he leads us to the first step.
- Who’s the Target?
Identifying and segmenting messaging to specific personas and target customers is vital. The more targeted a message is, the more valuable it is to that specific audience. Create a list of the targets you want to focus on. Start broad and narrow as you add attributes. For example:
Super Targeted Category
Female Bakery Owners
By narrowing the field, you can then hone in the pin points that face this target.
- What problem does this target struggle with?
Check Google Trends and discover the search activities and habits for this target. Then, create content that speaks to the challenges the specific target is facing.
For example, female bakery owners may be struggling with hiring or establishing robust supply chain. Regardless of the issue, consider the benefits that this audience would respond positively too, if you offered it.
Again, an example of your research may find that women owned bakery businesses need more finance options to ensure supply lines are solid. You can create content that speaks to ways of finding new finance options, resource for financing or best practice when looking for additional funding of a business.
- Create content in multiple forms
Consider writing a long-form blog on the issue at hand. Then break the blog into smaller posts, create an info graphic from the research data, record a video highlight of your findings, create a checklist or tip sheet filled with nuggets of information. You may also find articles written by others or resources you can share that you don’t have to personally create.
- Don’t give it all away at once
When your content is created don’t simply post it and hope for the best… Consider some alternatives.
Post a Headline: “Found a great article on (TOPIC)” to get more information – or the link TYPE IN (WORD OF CHOICE) below. This is asking the followers and your targeted audience to ‘raise their hands’ and start a conversation. This will boost the engagement of this post. Additionally, ask for a DM or private message: Ask the audience to private message your or DM you to get link or content.
- Respond in a timely manner
You must respond to all messages, reactions, and request promptly to keep engagement high. Following up and asking more questions after the fact is a great way to get feedback.
Remember to vary your content and posts. Not all posts need to follow the ‘Raise Your Hand’ guidelines. Mix up when and how you ask for engagement, but always ask. Make sure your focus is on providing value: educating, entertaining, or inspiring your followers and audience.
Mix up the type of content you post to ensure you are keeping your audience interested.
Types of Content:
- Tip Sheet
- White Papers
- Article links
Ultimately, getting your targets engaged in a conversation, exchanging feedback, and getting them to raise their hand to participate will give you a more effective conversion strategy.
To learn more about Brad Sugars or ActionCOACH, visit actioncoach.com