I spend a considerable amount of time work on the @free Twitter account and related sites. @free is an inclusive but increasing a youth oriented brand. Certainly we have readers from all age rangers, but the majority of our audience in under 25. And while I have learned a considerable amount about our readers tastes, I am the first to admit that as someone who spends my days dealing with communications and marketing issues, I have to rely on the members of our team, who are actually living the high school, college and young adult lifestyle, for insights.
But I also have another technique that helps the @free team create a relevant editorial calender for content. I ask questions of our audience. Questions have the obvious benefits of creating engagement especially if social media account managers follow up with personal responses, but they also can give you valuable insight.
On one our secondary accounts that focuses on deals I asked:
Resulting answers with key words in red boxes:
Halloween was such an obvious choice that I even mentioned it in the question, but homecoming wasn’t something I even considered. I also learned about an upcoming video game release, and was surprised that no one mentioned football, but the baseball playoff were mentioned.
Actionable insights. Based on answers I . . .
- Asked our iPhone and Android contributors to write up a blog post on Halloween apps.
- Suggested to our @universifree contributor that she ask readers about their homecoming memories.
- Put out the call to our volunteer contributors for someone interested in researching and writing up a blog post about the best places to find pumpkin carving templates.
- Made note of the haunted house trend, and am considering a way to use that information to have readers send photos of that experience.
- Am now more aware that our audience may have an interest in the baseball playoffs as well as future video game releases.
Your audience will likely have totally different interests, and that is why asking questions can help you make decisions about what types of content will be most meaningful and popular with your audience.