Our Marketing Tribe – Part 2 – the 3 steps to creating a marketing tribe attention map

By William Flanagan
Modified September 20, 2021, Posted in ,

The Marketing Tribe Attention Map

In the tribe, you follow the attention. And, attention comes from sharing and engagement.

On the internet, a very small percentage of people produce content. In fact, less than 1% do. Most people lurk.

A lurker doesn’t have much attention. Meaning, there are no eyeballs on lurkers. So, lurkers do not have authority and visibility among your marketing tribe.

Thus, the first and most important rule for the marketing tribe attention map is ‘content’. The people and businesses you include need to produce content on a regular basis. And have done so recently. Otherwise, your marketing tribe attention map will not be up to date.

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If they’re not, then they shouldn’t be on this list.

Remember, your goal isn’t to “sell” when engaging the tribe. It is to build authority and visibility. And, that sell’s the sell.

the-one-percent

Creating an effective marketing tribe attention map is somewhat time consuming. It requires that you know and understand your marketplace. It requires that you are able to identify who is part of your marketing tribe. And it requires that you can determine who holds authority in your marketing tribe.

In the following paragraphs I have laid out a 3 step process in creating and using your marketing tribe attention map to build up your authority and visibility in your marketing tribe.

Step 1: Build the marketing tribe attention map.

To build a marketing tribe attention map, you first have to lay out a series of categories. Then, you core dump as much information into those categories as possible. You are building up your knowledge base.

Then, you research which of the categories have more worth. With worth you are measuring engagement and attention. Ask yourself these questions: How much engagement do these people and businesses have? What is their follower count? How much are they talking about the market space? How much are they talked about in the market space? And how much content are they producing?

Finally, you group into quartiles (top 25%, top middle 25%, bottom middle 25%, and bottom 25%).

How do you create categories for your marketing tribe attention map?

For each category, you are going to use some Google-Fu to get the data we need.

Your approach should be to query google about your niche with niche-related keywords and the term “Top X {{term}} {{current year}}”. And example would be: “top content marketing books 2020”.

For each of the keywords you have selected, the process is the same. You go through the first page of results and gather who seems to rise to the top. For each keyword you should build around 10 to 15 items. Of course, this number is a suggestion, you may add more, but it does create more work.

If you have overlap (the person wrote a book, and their blog is also a top blog), then place them in one category. But, you should make a note of both top rankings. For example, put a note on the selected category for this person that another top ranking exists.

I have two small tips. First, when you build your spreadsheet, it’s a good idea to provide a link back to the item or website or influencer. You will need it in the next step for identifying the person and for tracing traffic/visibility.

A second tip is that if you are local or geographically limited, modify your query. You can adapt the query to your geographical reach upfront. The work of gathering data might be a bit harder, but you will get precisely what you need. Without the need to go back and vet the data.

11 categories for segmenting your marketing tribe attention map

Below I listed a number of categories for how to segment your marketing tribe attention map.

These categories are not the be all and end all. If a category isn’t relevant for you, then you should skip it. Be pragmatic.

Books

What books do they read?

Influencers

What influencers do they follow (related to your topic)?

I would suggest you query for the term ‘influencers’ for the appropriate social media channels for you (for example, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tiktok etc.).

Another possible query would be site:X.com queries for the individual social media channels. This kind of query might return more useful results if your niche query isn’t pulling good results.

Associations

What associations do they belong do? What professional certifications do they have, need, or want?

Groups

In what discussion groups do they discuss items? On Facebook, in Reddit forums, or maybe in Slack groups?

You could query the terms: facebook groups, slack groups, forums, communities, sub-groups, threads etc.

Blogs

What blogs are they subscribed to (versus a blog they visit when they’re searching)?

You should query the terms: websites, blogs, instagram stories etc.

YouTube Channels/Shows

What YouTube channels do they watch (based on the creator OR content)?

You should query the terms: Youtube channels, Youtube shows.

Instead of working in Google, you can also go to Youtube directly and query there as well. Click the filter list, and select filtering by channel. This will provide your list.

Inbox

What newsletters do they subscribe to? Who can access their email inbox?

Authors

What authors are writing on multiple websites about your topic that might be open to partnerships or ghost writing?

You can query the terms: articles, authors, stories, creators, publishers, etc.

This one I find more difficult to query. The lists generated can be quite overwhelming. Don’t get discouraged, but be prepared to dig deeper. This category will generally fill up when you’re digging around. You’ll find that the authors are showing up on many sites.

Phrases

What keywords are they searching for related to the product or service you provide? What skills are they looking for how to do better?

On this, it’s better to use a tool like ‘Ubersuggest‘ to do some primary keyword research.

Hashtags

What hashtags would they follow?

I find that queries on Google work fine for this category. But of course, you can also use other tools that are hashtag specific.

IRL

What meetups & conferences do they attend? What events do they participate in?

Given the pandemic, you should expand your queries to allow for virtual events, conferences, collaborations, meetups, etc.

You should query the terms: meetups, conferences, events, etc.

Don’t forget to add your local geography, if appropriate.

Where are my competitors?

After reading over this list of categories you are probably wondering why I did not list competitors. Are they not part of the marketing tribe attention map? Yes they are. But, I have a caveat. You do not want to make this list about them.

You can look at your competitors’ social networks. This will give you some ideas about their reach, their audience, and their marketing strategy. But, like we discussed before, it’s not about them. It’s about YOUR fit with the customer. And, often, when you include competitors, you end up putting all your attention on that category. It’s a good idea to check them. But, honestly, it’s not a priority. You do you.

My argument for why I did not include the category of ‘affinities’ runs along similar lines. I believe you need to focus, first, on your direct marketing tribe attention.

Remember, only after you’ve squeezed the lemons, do you look for limes.

Step 2: Enrich the marketing tribe attention map with a person and their estimate reach.

If you were thorough in your research queries, you should have a marketing tribe attention map. It is still rudimentary and rough around the edges. Now it is time to make it better. More detailed. More focused. Better for your tribe engagement.

The next step is to figure out who is the person that controls the eyeballs. Or persons. Who has the attention among the tribe? Who has a high visibility? Who is granted a significant share of the authority?

You need to get their contact information. You need to determine the person’s reach so you can prioritize within a type. This will allow you to identify how you can best capture the attention in your marketing tribe.

This will be a multi-pronged approach. Try to find the person. Try to find their company. Try to find their LinkedIn. Try to find their Email and phone number (if possible). What are their various social media network accounts? Gather as much data as you can.

The approach you will use for reach is this: Try to figure out how big their audience is. How much attention can they command?

In the case of their social media networks, it’s pretty easy. You can simply check their follower counts and engagement. For groups and associations, it’s the member lists and member numbers. For blogs, it’s their Domain Authority or Pagerank. You could check out estimated traffic. For Youtube channels it is their subscriber list. For Instagram it is their followers and their collaborations, and so forth.

I collected a few suggestions for how to assess audiences for each of the segmentation categories.

Books

Start with the author. Most authors will have an Amazon page. Go to this author’s page and review their bio. Are they associated with a company? Then look them up on LinkedIn, and go from there.

Influencers

Most influencers do not limit themselves to one social media network, although there might be a dominant or preferred social media channel in their portfolio. You want to cast a broad net. Get their other social media accounts. Also, try to find their LinkedIn.

Associations

If you are searching for people, a good place to start is with the director of membership. If you are trying to determine the association’s reach, then look at their membership lists.

A little tip, many associations often sell their member lists, and make money mailing to their membership.

Groups

Similar to how you tackle associations, if you are looking for people, a good place to start is to find the moderator or admin for the group. Sometimes there might be more than one admin for a group.

If you are looking to establish the group’s reach, look at the membership (if public).

Blogs

If the site is a “personal brand” site, then you are looking for the person behind the personal brand. If it is not a personal brand site, there often is a ton of guest posts. Then you need to look through the list of authors to try to find the content marketing manager. If that fails, then use LinkedIn and search for the website manager or content marketing manager.

To assess the reach of the blog you can use the ‘Ubersuggest‘ domain score, or a similar tool. Use the best domain rank for the blog.

YouTube Channels/Shows

For Youtube channels and shows it is similar to blogs. If it’s a personal brand or one person on the camera, then you’ll want that person. If it’s a mix people, try to find the person that established the channel. The brain behind the show, so to speak. Who is publishing the channel? Who is named as the creator of the show?

Inbox

Look for an advertise link. If so, look for a media guide that might list out who to contact, etc. If they don’t have it, then try searching through their site’s page content using site:xxx.com. Try to find pages like landing pages, contact us pages, or other business pages that might list out the name of the lead person or founder.

To determine reach, you use a similar approach. You are looking for a media buying guide, which you hope they publish. If not, they for sure will have a way to contact them about advertising. Reach out and get it.

Authors

The fastest way I’ve found to find contact information for authors is to find their additional social media information. You might have to hop scotch through the social media channels. Authors often post on a lot of sites. Be patient and you might come across an email.

Determining an author’s reach can be tricky. Try to find their “home” website. More and more author’s have one on which they list the sales content for their writing, and their main company, etc. You can use this to estimate on which social media channels they have placed content. And how often. Then, use the BEST domain rank to rank their reach.

Phrases

This is not a relevant category to rank a person’s attention level in the marketing tribe attention map. Why? Because Google controls this.

But to determine and rank reach, phrases can be a useful category. Try to determine searches per month. Then, verify (if you can) on Google Trends whether it’s increasing or decreasing. Yes, searches can be cyclical. But, if you notice a long term trend in decreasing searches for particular phrases, then its ‘worth’ is declining.

Hashtags

As with phrases, hashtags is not really a relevant category to determine attention. Not because Google controls it, but because anybody can post here.

To determine reach and rank it, you have different options. On Instagram and Twitter, you can do a query over a period of time. This will allow you to determine the mentions of this hashtag per month.

In addition, there are also like socialalert.com that have the ability to do this and can help you determine exposure (total reach).

IRL

You can start with a salesperson. But, the best thing to do is to reach out inquiring about speaking at an event, and figuring out what you need to do to make that happen. That will expose the people worth talking to, as well as potential costs/pricing to make it happen.

Reach can be determined by looking at conference attendee lists or visitor lists to an event. If it is a recurring event or meeting, there is probably also a member list. I would suggest to store this data with a note whether it is a recurring or one time event.

Step 3: Build your A, B, C, and D lists from the marketing tribe attention map.

Using the reach criteria you gathered, sort each category by their reach.

After sorting, group the generated lists into quartiles. Top 25% to bottom 25% — A, B, C, and D lists.

For each group, you now need to weigh how you feel about each list.

Your D list people should represent “low risk” people. These are people you shouldn’t feel anxious about reaching out to. They shouldn’t feel superior. Your C, B, and A lists should all feel like stretches, with the A people being the top of the mountain.

If you don’t have some of these D people in your list, then change your list. You should go back and try to fill some of these in so you can test and improve your outreach before you go up to higher level targets.

Engagement should begin with low hanging fruit. Start with people that are on the D list. Work your way up slowly, constantly testing and improving your outreach strategy.

You might wonder why you would create an A list if you are not reaching out to them? Because the lists you created serve as targeting lists for ad campaigns. When you target the D or C groups for partnerships, you will simultaneously target the B and A lists for paid traffic.

As you get more comfortable with your outreach the campaign, and as your visibility and authority increases with this increased engagement in your tribe, you can move your efforts upward. Eventually, you should be networking to build relationships with the top tier folks in your marketplace. And remember, these top tier folks could be influencer, authors, competitors, advertisers, etc.

Throughout it all, remember that people are people. Whether they are on the D list or on the A list. If you give them something that’s in it for them, and it’s a win-win, why wouldn’t they want to hear from you?

Tips

Let’s finish off this post with some small tips.

  • Don’t focus on content at this point. You primary task is to create the marketing tribe attention map. Once you have it and understand it, you can build campaigns that target this list.
  • I have used a modified version of Porter’s 5 forces to check how risky each outreach or person would/could be. You can do this. But, I’d only recommend it if you think the venture is risky. Nevertheless, I’ve included the link to the Porter’s 5 forces in the resources section below.
  • I have also included a link to a Forbes article that provides a “top 10 list” style guide that covers what behaviors leaders show.

Resources

Our Tribe Process Chart on Miro

Our Tribe Process Visual Template on Google Slides

Tribe Definition and Risks Spreadsheet Template

The 15 Things Leader do Every Day – Forbes Article that lists the things that leaders do

The Conscious of Silicon Valley – GQ article on Jaron Lanier the evils of social media

Modified Porter’s 5 Forces

https://www.heepsy.com/

https://hashtagify.me/

Great leaders Grow – Leadership styles review on the styles of leadership

Tribe vs Community TikTok by farrynheights

10+ years of marketing agency experience. 10+ years (4 exits) of VC-funded startup experience. Dad. Musician. Coffee-lover. E-bike aficionado.