Know Your Audience: How Often Do They REALLY Want to Hear from You?

To be effective at relationship marketing, you need to know your audience. One aspect of knowing your audience is discerning how much interaction—via email, social media, etc.—is effective, and how much is just TOO much.

Know Your Audience: How Often Do They REALLY Want to Hear from You?

Let’s compare three different scenarios and audiences. Stay with me here—it won’t look relevant at first, but I will show you how what I’m sharing relates to business.

1. The Annual Communicator

Almost everyone has a relative, friend, or acquaintance who you only hear from once a year in the form of a holiday card. Sure, it’s nice that they reached out, but communicating just once a year doesn’t give you a chance to stay up to date with them nor feel like you have a relationship with them.

2. The Self-Centered Communicator

Maybe you have a college roommate who lives out of state and you only hear from him or her when there’s drama in their life or they need to vent about something. These are the people who are in touch more frequently than the people in the first example, but only when they need something—not because they have an interest in what is happening in your life.

3. The Overwhelming Communicator

Ever hear of (or experience) this scenario: The parent who dropped off their 18-year-old daughter at college for the first time and who texts and/or calls every day, just to check on how things are going. Did she get to class on time? How’s the food at the dining hall? Do you like your roommates? What do you mean your books cost $800? Do you want us to come visit for Parents’ Weekend?

Each of these real-life scenarios can translate to a business situation, especially when it comes to email marketing.

1. The Annual Email Communicator

Unless you are a seasonal business—like the Halloween costume shops that pop up once a year—communicating with your audience once a year increases your chances of having your emails deleted or marked as spam. Communicating with your audience only once a year won’t create name recognition, won’t keep you top of mind, and certainly won’t improve your bottom line.

2. The Self-Centered Email Communicator

If all the communication you have with your audience is buy this or buy that, your audience will think you only care about yourself and your bottom line. This is not building a relationship with your audience—it’s acting like a sleazy salesperson. Your audience will begin to delete your emails or mark them as spam, unsubscribe from your list, and unfollow you on social media.

3. The Overwhelming Email Communicator

Have you ever opted into someone’s list only to get emails multiple times a day? Businesses who communicate with their audience every single day run the risk of annoying their audience and causing people to unsubscribe from their lists. There are exceptions, however: There are leaders in their industry who send daily tips and/or affirmations. I subscribe to a couple of daily email lists and actually look forward to this regular communication.

Know Your Audience Sweet Spot for Communication

More than likely, you’ll want to strike a balance between numbers one and two. You need to send some promotions, or you’re not a business. However, you want most of your communications with your audience to be informational and educational. You want to add value to their lives so they’ll stick with you.

Get to know your audience so you can interact with them in a way that builds a solid relationship. That may be once a week, twice a week, once a month or somewhere in between. The rule of thumb is to not drop below once a month nor go more than once a day in general. Again, there will be exceptions, such as during a product launch and most people in your audience will understand that.

As far as content, your emails should be more often than not useful content. This can be links to a blog post or tips in the email itself. Keep your promotions low key most of the time. Your audience needs to gain value from staying on your list, and once you know your audience you’ll know how to strike the right balance between informational content and promotion.

Further Reading

While researching this post, I found some articles I think you’ll find helpful, too.


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About the author

Carma Spence is an international best selling author and award-winning speaker who helps women, introverts and shy people unleash their content creation superpowers and communicate their message with confidence so that they can create meaningful and fulfilling legacies.

You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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