2. Penetrate the Market: Now look at the social media market as a typical rural market in Africa or an open populous market in developed countries. Everybody is talking. You look around nobody is talking. There is noise everywhere until you ask an old Mama “Madam, how much is your periwinkle?” Immediately you said this, you kept quiet. “Ten naira,” came her feeble voice believing you have heard clearly, the amount. From the moment you reached out to your wallet, the woman proceeded to wrap the product on a transparent nylon wrapper. Gazing once more at your hand, she stretch out the product while your hands meet mid-air for a satisfactory transaction.
As you proceed from the woman. The noise continues, nobody is talking. You throw your eyes on one or two products. Some merchants yell from the corner and one was so sharp to your ears, you turn around. It was periwinkle, a product you’ve just added to your cart. “Alex,” someone called from the corner. Twirling, you come in contact with a very good friend in a near embrace. “How’s life Tony?” You scream as the laughter set one or two faces turning in your direction. Pleasantries done, you went on a few moments of the past. Contacts are exchanged and you have a final handshake that rekindles the spirit. That is the open market in most countries of the world. Everyone is talking and if you want to really know who said what, you get really distracted. A very noisy environment, yet serious transactions are going on.
Now, that is also a picture of a typical social media market. You have brought your products to the market. You have created a hashtag or some hashtags to be used as your cart. Others are here with their products too. They want to sell too. Others are meeting and exchanging pleasantries. Others are school kids who are here to meet their parents. This is the imaginary market – social media market. Everyone on your friend’s list or followers are either looking for a product to buy or are here to sell something. Some are there to catch fun. The periphery are those who out of the market. They are just roaming or about to leave the market. They can’t buy again. You must penetrate the market to meet your buyers.
Sometimes to get a space to move your cart you may need to yell at people and then smile at them at the same time. Use your cart to touch their butts and apologize where necessary – I will explain this in latter articles. This may need you to have a reputation. Your problem is not what people think of you. Your problem is to penetrate the market and get known so that your potential customers can locate you. Now the market is considered in two forms. The collective mind of the user on a particular platform and the individual mind you are targeting.
1) The Collective Mind of The Users: Any abuse of what I will attempt to explain here will sometimes cost you untold damage. Every platform has a collective mind. If you are an ordinary user of social media, you may not feel this. Once you have assessed the product you want to market, your next target should be to determine the market. In assessing the product, you will think of the location of the nearest users of your product. What platform do people within that region use the most. What are their likes in terms of culture, religion, etc. You must tailor your campaigns to suit this narcissism. Neglect this, they will see you as an outsider and your words will be considered less.
A careful examination of the minds of the users on a particular platform will also help you customize your campaigns to create the right emotions that will see your product soaring and gaining the supports on that platform. For instance, assuming 2go is still in existence, there are ways you will target on audience on 2go considering if you are taking same product to facebook. As a consummate digital marketer, your work is to detect this general feeling on the platform while thinking of your audience as you strategize. Facebook is not twitter, twitter is not instagram, instagram is not linked in, and so on.
Develop this instinct. Connect with your audience while designing the template of your digital marketing strategies. You must remember that one of the greatest problems you will face in the Digital Market is people’s stubbornness in opening up to your strategies. They seem closed up in their thoughts and problems. They display happy profile pictures while they are drawn in their immediate problems. Your strategy will be to bring succor, make them relax, give them a reason to smile then insinuate your product or brand. Leveling people’s resistance through this strategy will make your product and brand go viral through the reproduction of your ideas by influencers, potential customers and users of the platform. Relax and watch as the public become your marketers.
2. The Mind of the Individual Users: These are mines that will give you gold for a very long period of time. While designing your templates for your product or brand, focus more on the mind of the users than the collective mind of the platform. You must remember that every user is your marketer and once they become loyal ally, you have planted a marketer at that location. Your audience must be so satisfied that they came to the buy your product involuntarily. Consider the mind of your customer as the rowdy open market full of so many uncertainties. You must learn to see their minds as having a tall fence round a castle and your work is to break in or bypass the fence somehow to get to your targets. This is where you consider all the strategies known in the world of persuasion. This is where your skills in the industry is consummated.
At the initial stage you must master the art of insinuation. Concoct stories that appeals to your targets vanity. Lower their resistance by opening a hole in their personal life. Understand: every social media user has that thing he or she is missing. It could be that unfulfilled life of wealth and splendor. It could be adventure, pleasure, health. Tailor your strategy in such a way that in the end these good things turn out to be precisely what you seem to offer them, they will come to you as if on their own, unaware that you insinuated the idea into their heads.
This strategy is simple. You can drop a hint as a banal talk on a comment session without making any reference to your product. It could be a reference to lack of excitement in a person’s life. It could be an emotional issue. All you aim at is opening holes in their ego. Make them feel angry for not attaining a certain status. Their lack of attainment in life is the product of their past thoughts and actions. You believe there are better ways to do the things your targets are struggling to achieve. Push them and watch as they scan the social media space looking for the solutions. By so doing, they have forgotten about the real issue, they now believe there is a solution to the problem, but are yet to find it. When you discover their guards are totally down, insinuate your product or brand.
At this point any direct introduction of your brand or product may stir up a resentment in your target. If this happens it will take you strategizing the campaign. What you simply do is to insinuate the product. Offer to be a link between someone who had shared a testimony about the product you are bringing to the Digital Market and you targets. Present the comment as neutral as you can be. Get the services of influencers to introduce the product at various forum while you only seem to like the idea. Now their walls are down and your target is requesting for the product. Again, act the middle man. Your target’s pride is intact since they believe they came to discover the product by themselves. They will not only buy from you but they will promote the product to proof to others their ingenuity and will even offer to supply the product to his or her friends and followers. This will be your loyal pawns which you will use in building your network of allies.
You have sold the product. Stand back and monitor as the network grows. Becoming too pushy will make you seem insecure and fickle. Feedback is important now. Build avenues of getting feedback from your customers and try to ‘listen’ using the various digital marketing tools for these purpose. Watch out for your competitor’s antics of sending negative testimonies to bring down your product. Once your product saturates the market, create events that will go into the media for a long time giving your customers a satisfaction of belonging to a certain class. Penetrating the digital market is of a very great essence, neglect this strategy only at your own peril.