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5 ways Target uses social to drive brand loyalty

5 ways Target uses social to drive brand loyalty Joe Curry

Using social to spread brand love

Target's main focus on social media isn't to "sell, sell, sell." The brand takes the approach that social media should be used to advocate for your brand and make people love it. Spreading brand love and growing brand loyalists are two huge focuses for Target's social strategy. Consumers don't want to be sold to, especially on their favorite social channels. They want to be engaged with.

Gently driving consumers in stores

Spreading brand love is a very important keystone for Target's strategy. But how does the brand walk the line between selling to its customers and just promoting itself to the masses? Instead of the traditional social media sell, Target wants to drive people in stores by offering discounts, new offerings, and holiday products on its social channels. Putting the brand out there without a hard "buy this now" attitude is essential to piquing consumers' curiosity and leading them down the purchase funnel.

Growing Pinterest as a main social network for brand engagement

Pinterest is hot right now for brands, and many haven't tapped its potential. Target knows that this platform presents a huge opportunity to market its products in a fun and native way. Already, brands like L.L.Bean have found huge success on Pinterest because the social network is geared toward sharing engaging images and products consumers love. Unlike L.L.Bean, Target runs the gambit when it comes to the variety of products sold. The brand knows that if it keeps growing its presence on Pinterest in a smart way, it could become a huge marketing force on the network.

Joe Curry, social media manager for Target, speaks about what the brand's social pillars consist of and how his team views the role of Pinterest in its strategy.

Target's online magazine "A Bullseye View"

In addition to traditional social media management, a strong content strategy is also a cornerstone of Target's success. Its online magazine "A Bullseye View" is a lifestyle publication that focuses on improving the well-being of its customers. The publication also introduces items that can be purchased from Target to accomplish the variety of home improvements, recipes, and fitness tips it provides. It also gives readers a unique behind-the-scenes look at Target's most exciting partnerships, events, and innovations. Social is used to push out this content, mixing two marketing strategies to achieve higher brand awareness and loyalty.

Exploring creative ways to tell Target's story (such as on Vine)

For 2014, Target plans to take its social strategy to a new, innovative level. One of the most exciting undertakings for the social team is to find ways to promote Target creatively on social media with the multitude of new platforms and apps available. Vine is especially interesting to the brand because it creates a fun and unique challenge: telling the Target story in six seconds or less. Will the brand find innovative footing on Snapchat as well? What will be the role of teenage-centric platforms like Kik and 4chan? These are all exciting opportunities that Target is just dipping its toes into.

Joe Curry ends our conversation by explaining how Target's content marketing publication is helping to drive brand loyalty, and what Target may have in store for 2014.

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Joe Curry is a social media manager at Target on the public relations team, where he works on "A Bullseye View," Target's behind-the-scenes online magazine, and the Target Inner Circle blogger program. Prior to joining Target in 2011, he worked at...

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