“There is only one winning strategy. It is to carefully define the target market and direct a superior offering to that target market,” marketing author, Philip Kotler.
In an early article, we shared the 7V framework ((7Vs of Personal Branding)) for personal branding. This time we are exploring Volks.
The German noun ‘Volk’ translates to people, and it is most important to know your people when marketing a brand. One of the biggest marketing failures is to try to appeal to everyone at once. It just isn’t realistic to cater to everyone’s needs. When creating a brand, you specify your personal values, you define your vision, and in doing so, you attract the kind of people that are also interested in the same goals. And knowing your audience is as crucial as knowing your own brand.
Volkswagen is a car company from Germany. The word Volkswagen means “People’s car” in German. This is powerful branding as it includes both the product and the consumer. Connecting to the “volks” with the “wagen.”
And using the metaphor, online, we have our volks (target market) + wagen (chosen social platform).
When a consumer is swimming in the vast ocean of the market, it is important to showcase your brand in such a way that it immediately guides them about your product/services. So that you only attract the desired audience, instead of futile spectators.
There are 3 types of volks to consider, they are:
While it’s important to reach as many people as possible, your target audience is not “everyone.” Identifying and knowing your particular niche is your role in determining your target group so that you can dominate it.
Aiming at smaller, more specific groups is the most effective way to reach more interested customers. When you understand your audience, you get better at targeting them with relevant content, which generates a better response.
Belonging to a community is a fundamental need, and through the world of fast-evolving social media, community marketing is a necessity. Community marketing is a strategy through which both the brand and the client can benefit. The company creates a community for its customers to feel valued and belonged, therefore, staying loyal to the company. At the same time, the interactive environment helps companies gain valuable feedback. An active audience shows strong market positioning.
Creating a forum or Facebook groups/Twitter pages for the customers to interact with the brand and its customers creates a space for your volks, and monitoring such interactions can also help the company improve on its product/services.
The Client-Brand relationship is the most important. The client’s interest in your product is directly proportionate to your attention towards the client. That is why High-Standard customer service not only wins you the customer’s heart but also their loyalty. And a loyal customer is a company’s treasure. We’ve heard, “The customer is always right” a billion times because it is true. Customer satisfaction must be the top priority of a company in order to achieve credibility.
How to Grow To 1000 or more connections on LinkedIn
The following are some strategies that can prove to be helpful in growing your connections on LinkedIn:
- Post engaging content: Post content on LinkedIn that will appeal to your viewers. Don’t post long written content as it does not visually attract people. Use trending hashtags and make sure your content is interesting and engaging. The more engagements you get on your content, the more it will be visible to other LinkedIn users. Post visual content as it appeals more to the audience. Use topics that are interesting and trending. Make a good headline, as this leaves a good impression. You can also use a few emojis in your written content to make it seem more readable.
- Optimize your LinkedIn profile: Add keywords in your profile that are most searched by LinkedIn users. Fill out as much information you can about yourself and your professional career. Optimize your profile by adding a good photograph of yourself and an eye-catching cover image. Your first impression is based on what appears on your LinkedIn profile. When scouting, your profile is the recruiter’s first impression of you, even though you haven’t met them in person. People like to work with people who are polite and have a variety of interests outside of work, making them more relatable. Your passions must be genuine, but they must also be relevant to your target audience and related to your career. By listing your preferences, recruiters and prospective employers would be able to learn more about the things you like, making you more approachable. People can appraise you based on your interests in addition to your academic skills.
- Publish videos on LinkedIn: Some users prefer video content over text content; posting videos directly on LinkedIn has a massive advantage over sharing external video links as LinkedIn videos are likely to get more impressions. These videos can help in building your LinkedIn connections. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to create a good video; you can just record a video using your mobile in your hand using some professional techniques which can leave quite a good impression on your followers and viewers. If you opt to spend a large sum of money on creating a video, then make sure that it is worth using unique ideas.
- Create engaging LinkedIn polls. LinkedIn has become more content driven by adding poll feature. LinkedIn polls function similarly to Twitter polls where users can create questions with response options. Unfortunately, polls are very underrated, they are a great tool to boost interaction and engagement. The key to LinkedIn polls is to keep them short and sharp, as a question to prompt a voting action. Make it easy to pick up from the choices you will offer. And lastly, leverage the option of “others” to increase conversation in comments section
- Share your LinkedIn URL: Share your LinkedIn URL on your Facebook profile. Join different Facebook groups related to the field you are working in and share your LinkedIn profile there. People interested in your field of work will want to follow you to see your content and get ideas. Add your LinkedIn URL in your Instagram bio. Sharing your LinkedIn URL on your website can also help in bringing more viewers to your profile. In short, share your LinkedIn profile on all your social media platforms to bring in more viewers and followers.
- Be Consistent and update your profile regularly: Appear almost every day on LinkedIn. Share at least one post and make sure your content is up to date to the current trends. This will help in building your engagements and increasing your followers. Being active regularly also leaves a good impression on your viewers. This will show your dedication and passion. Always keep your profile up to date. As soon as you get a new job or achieve something new, add it to your LinkedIn profile. This makes your profile seem more attractive and leaves a positive impression on your followers.
- Reply to comments and respond to sharers: When you post any content, people will engage with it. Reply to all the comments as this encourages the engagers to engage more often. Make the people who comment on your posts seem valued, as this will motivate them to comment the next time as well. Keep your audience happy and engaged. Each time they comment on your content, that content will be visible to their followers as well, which can increase your connections and viewers. Similarly, when anybody shares your content, go to their profile, and thank them for sharing your post, this positive feedback will make them share the next time too. As your engagements grow, so will your connections.
- Livestream on LinkedIn: One of the main reasons that set LinkedIn Live apart from standard video posting is the ability to interact with people in real-time. You can Broadcast your webinar on LinkedIn as a second channel and use it to share interesting insights. And if you get a lot of questions from followers or customers on the platform, you can host a Livestream to answer them for your entire audience.
- Use LinkedIn hashtags in every post: Ensure that the hashtags you are using have a large number of followers so that your profile can be visible to more people. Before you get started with your post, research the hashtags carefully by finding out the specific hashtags that have followers on LinkedIn and have relevant content. Adding hashtags to your LinkedIn updates and articles gives them a higher chance of being discovered by LinkedIn members who follow or search for the hashtag you’ve used. You also allow people to organically find your content through one of the hashtags they follow.
- Tag connections and companies in your LinkedIn post: By mentioning a connection or other members encourages engagement to your post because they are getting notified about the post or comment. If you’re tagging people, you will find that they will often engage with your posts by leaving comments, liking, or even sharing. And this is an excellent opportunity to grow your audience. For the company pages, it can be quite tricky because not every company page is engaging or monitored.
- Be the expert in your field: By sharing your expertise and knowledge with your LinkedIn network, you are becoming incredibly valuable to them. And the moment you share a lot of value to them, you make it much more likely that they want to follow you because they want to get more value in the future.
- Create “breaking news” style posts: You are becoming unique by being the first to share a piece of news, and by being the first to have an opinion that nobody else is sharing. Everyone wants to be connected to the person who knows everything first and who reports things first. But remember, don’t just share a piece of news, but you need to consider or understand what kind of news is this, what does it mean, and how people can prepare for this good or bad news.
- Join the right LinkedIn groups: You widen your network by joining the right kind of group because LinkedIn considers members of a collaborative group. So, in other words, you have the opportunity to increase your 2nd-degree network by considerably joining a group and then connecting with people. You can start relevant discussions, or you can comment on the talks.
- Create your own LinkedIn group: LinkedIn groups are a great way to attract a very niche audience. It provides a place for professionals in the same industry or similar interests to share their insights and experiences, build valuable connections, and ask for guidance. As the group grows, more and more members will invite other members. And then they learn about you through the group and will also follow you in person. But make sure that you get the community engaged
- Import your email contacts: LinkedIn allows us to send invitations to our email contacts that are on LinkedIn. By doing so, you can increase your connections to a large number. Send a LinkedIn request to all the emails you have in your contacts list, they will receive a connection message, and in this way, you can increase your followers to a great extent.