Friday, October 25, 2013

Appealing to Cross Sexes & Generations Online

Businesses, associations, non-profits; actually, ALL professionals, struggle with how to effectively communicate with their different target markets online.  One message and the medium does NOT appeal to everyone. I'd like to help you understand, how to take ONE message and repurprose it for various target markets.

I've been asked to speak on this specific topic recently, to prepare I pulled together mountains of statistic about WHERE various ages are online, WHAT they are doing online, WHEN they are online and WHICH mediums they use to access it.
I've become so excited about it this topic that I've decided to write a book on it.  I'll be looking at 1,000s of various behaviors through real businesses' online social media platforms and pinpointing which activities cause specific types of engagement from specific demographics.  On a side note, if your organization happens to have over 1,000 followers or fans, and you'd like me to analyze your platforms, please let me know, I'd love to include you in my book! 
To start, I have included these two charts which show what 75,000 people of different sexes and ages are talking about on Facebook. What they're talking about reflects what they're interested in, listening for and engaging with online. Use these word maps to mold your Posts or Tweets for that target audience.  Take one message and present it in a manner that's most appealing to each of your target markets.  

What are different SEXs talking about?

University of Pennsylvania researchers analyzed the Facebook status updates of 75,000, found the sexes have a very different vocabulary online.  

A wise communicator adjusts their message's language based on way their target audience is interested in or talking about. I suggest you take your  primary message, dice it up, then target it. One simple way to target is to boost a Post on Facebook to ONLY females when using language females relate to, and boost a very different Post aimed at males.

For all the details on this chart, you can go to the article itself, Oct 2013, by Business Insider,

Scientists Used Facebook For the Largest Ever Study of Language and Personalit

What are different age groups talking about on Facebook?

Conversations certainly  "evolve" as we age.  

Continuing the above approach, adjust your message to embrace what your target audience is speaking of.  Learn from these word clouds to modify your message based on age.   

For example, if you are targeting age groups between 23 to 29, you are not going to catch their attention with posts about school, homework or family; but, more likely with something to do careers, money & beer!

Allocation of Online Time by Age

To add to the mix, look at WHAT different age groups are doing online? 

Well, it's certainly NOT email for the under 24 years old!   

Also, notice how long each spends online daily. The under 24 age group is online 3.5 times longer than the over 55 age group. PLUS, the under 24 group is online MUCH later in the evening than the rest of the population (different set of statistics and my own personal experience).  So, target your platforms and timing.

On a final note, think about mobility, over 50% of teens,  both sexes, use their cell phones as their PRIMARY method to surf the net. So, if your Posts are aimed at youth, the links, videos or photos attached to your Posts must be smart phone friendly.  

There's SO much more to cover! Like, the effective use of email, which exact platform, video and texting.. Next time!


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