Tech tricks that let you learn from your audience

Building a relationship with your target audience takes a lot of work. Over time you eventually get an idea of what they want and what makes them tick. While this level of networking can eat up a lot of time, it’s definitely worth it when you mold your brand into something all your audience loves because you know them so well.

Starting this journey of relationship building can be tough, though, if you don’t know where to begin. Back in the “olden days” you would have to physically interact with your audience to get to know them, or maybe send out snail mail surveys once in awhile. Now, though, technology does a lot of this work for you – so you have no excuse not to making your customers deliriously happy!

Everything is Online, Use It

You would be hard pressed to find that even a single one of your audience members has zero public biographical information available on the web. (In fact, we might actually be suspicious about this customer’s true identity!) Whether it’s a Facebook page, an email address, or even an article about them in a local paper, something on the internet is bound to mention their name.

Since you most likely know your audience member’s names, try searching for them online. A simple Google search should yield some results. If they have a fairly common name, use some other info like the town they live in or maybe their business name if they also own one.

Usually one little bite can lead you down a rabbit hole. For example, you may find out they have a website. From there you can usually find all of their social media sites. Here you can check out what they like and talk about.

Also, don’t forget about LinkedIn. Practically everyone who has a job or had a job has a LinkedIn profile and it’s also a great way to get to know your people better.

Other Resources

One new service many brands are using is Vine, which is a video service from Twitter. Like Twitter it works in short bursts – instead of going to the expense and trouble of creating, exporting and uploading long YouTube videos, you get 6 precious seconds to say what you have to say. The app is super simple to use, too – just hold your finger on the screen to shoot, take it off to cut. This allows for easy editing.

How are businesses using Vine? All sorts of ways, really. They’ve made funny little videos making announcements on new products or showing off the interior of their company. Since you want to get to know your customers, why not use it to make micro movies to talk to them? You or a brand advocate can make a Vine asking customers questions or even calling out superstars.

Another company to check out is Rapportive. While you’re collecting all this info the last thing you want to do is to either lose it or spend forever trying to find everything again. Rapportive works inside Gmail – collecting all of your contact’s email addresses, social media accounts and even your notes on the relationship –  so when you send an email or look at the customer’s info everything is right there for you at once. Now you can spend more time fulfilling all your customers’ wishes!

What tech tricks have you used to learn about your customers?

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