By Amy Singer, Ph.D. and Diana Greninger
Nowadays everyone has a social media presence. Individuals, small businesses, large corporations…chances are, even one of your grandparents is on Facebook by now. So how do you build a large, engaged audience for your SNOW?
SNOW is an acronym that stands for Social Network Opinion Website. Using SNOW methodology, you can create multiple websites solely for social media research purposes.
Using sophisticated audience-gathering techniques, you can secure numerous (often, tens of thousands) visitors to the various websites, where they have the opportunity to learn about a particular product or service and to render opinions on its individual aspects.
From these opinions, you can uncover invaluable insight, which will allow you to tweak your tactics and strategies to gain customers or persuade your audience. For example, an attorney or trial consultant can create a SNOW dedicated to a specific case. A business can create a SNOW dedicated to a specific product or service. There, visitors can offer their instructive opinions on the guilt or innocence of the client (even without knowing real names of parties involved), the benefits of your product or service, and their critiques regarding your strategy.
Creating your SNOW is easy. The hard part is building an audience and getting them involved. After all, if you’re going to throw a party, you want people to show up! One of the most important things to do is constantly add fresh content. The more content you add, the more you will appeal to a large audience. The key to engaging your audience and keep them coming back is to add new and interesting content to your SNOW daily, or at least every couple of days. That is one of the reasons people like Facebook so much; every time you log on, there are new stories on your feed.
Timing is another key element to keep in mind, as the saying goes, “timing is everything.” According to a SocialTimes.com infographic, “the best time to post to Facebook is between 1pm and 4pm; the best time to post to Twitter is between 1pm and 3pm; the best time to post to LinkedIn is between 7am and 9am or 5pm and 6pm; the best time to post to Google+ s between 9am and 11am; and the best time to post to Pinterest is between 2pm and 4pm or 8pm and 1am. Not surprisingly, it doesn’t look good for your reach on any social sites when you post while people are fast asleep.”
Furthermore, in order to provide your followers with interesting information, you need to know your audience. Take advantage of Wizpor® or any of the other analytic tools available online to learn about your audience’s demographic. Spend the time conversing with your audience to get to know them better. Encourage them to participate in the discussion. Ask them to share their thoughts about the things you post. Perhaps, you might even want to invite people you have met face to face to your SNOW and ask them to invite their friends. The better you know your audience, the faster your number of followers will grow and the more interaction you will be able to have with them. Eventually, you will be able to gather so much valuable information from your audience, your online research will practically run itself. You will be able to tweak your persuasion strategies to make them as effective as possible.
Have you ever built a SNOW? Can you think of a project you are currently working on that can benefit from a SNOW?