Groundswell brings up lots of good points when talking about how to appeal to the right type of consumer. It was interesting to see the examples that were brought up throughout the chapter of organizations determining if groundswell is the right choice for their targeted market. The one I found the most interesting is on the support for obesity. Today’s society more than ever is focused on having fitness goals and social media plays a huge role in marketing for these organizations. “Obesity treatment and weight loss depend heavily on support” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.59) which is how the online chat rooms and blogs have become so popular for many people. The creators and conversationalists in this category have grown astronomically throughout the years and due to that the joiners and spectators have as well. I took a different approach to this blog and analyzed the target market of Instagram.
Instagram, a strict upload of short videos and photos has taken over the social media spectrum and become a way for consumers to not just interact with their friends but to promote their company’s products and services. “Over 90% of the 150 million people on Instagram are under the age of 35, which makes it an attractive platform for many apparel, entertainment, and media brands focused on the 18- to 34-year-old age bracket” (Smith, 2014). The fitness aspect has severely grown due to Instagram and has allowed fitness promoters to easily create and access their target market through social media. The way they have reached their consumers is through showing them numerous videos and recipes of how to have a healthier lifestyle. Instagram is much like promoting by word of mouth but through social media. To explain, on Instagram you follow friends, family members, organizations and celebrities and when they like something it shows up on your newsfeed. This allows you to know which pages have had your friend’s stamp of approval. This marketing tool has allowed for rapid growth within the fitness industry. What many trainers have started doing is marketing their online blogs, meal plans and works out plans to the public by showing before and after pictures of themselves and pre-existing clients to draw in consumers. Trainers have taken advantage of the accessibility of social media and used it to start their own businesses from home. Once you join these blogs (for a fee) you are able to ask the trainer questions and also associate with others on the same program as yourself. This is what they call an online support system. It helps keep people on track and motivated by talking to others and finding out what worked best for them. By following these trainers on Instagram cookies imbed and more fitness related pages start to appear in your newsfeed making it easier for organizations to reach their target market.
I personally have downloaded a couple different packages that I had seen on Instagram but they have proven to be ineffective for me. I feel that personally I would still be considered a spectator. The majority of the time I spend on social media is to see what everyone else is doing and looking to find new techniques to improve my lifestyle through others posts. Many people who have jumped on the fitness bandwagon this past year have taken it upon themselves to start posting about their journey due to the influence of others. People are slowly starting to make the move from being spectators and joiners into critics, conversationalists, and creators which has led to the growth of Instagram and social media as a whole.
An organization that has identified their target market to be demographically between the ages of 18-35 and have a geographic segmentation that is limitless has the opportunity to utilize Instagram and reap the benefits of offering products and services online. The proven success of reaching ones target market through Instagram is astronomical allowing for more and more people to climb up the Social Technographics ladder and be an active participant in the growth of an organization.
Li, C., & Bernoff, J. (2011). Groundswell: Winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, Massachusettes: Harvard Business Review Press.
Smith, C. (2014, August 17). Here’s Why Instagram’s Demographics Are So Attractive To Brands. Retrieved February 7, 2015, from Business Insider: http://www.businessinsider.com/instagram-demographics-2013-12