There are a lot of things to talk about when defining your target audience. Are they on the social network you’re using? What are their likes? Dislikes? Professions? Ages? Gender? Even though the Internet is global, geographical location is also important. As much as people talk about “developing an online presence” and “getting new fans”, these fans and followers need to be capable of becoming customers in the future. A mom and pop store exclusively serving Fairfield County, Connecticut isn’t going to make money with 1,000 Twitter fans out in California.
On the other hand, what’s unique about the Internet is its bidirectional nature. Even if you shouldn’t proactively target non-ideal fans or followers, nothing is stopping them from finding your business online on their own or through mutual connections and getting involved. You should be thrilled when this happens. If people are interested enough in checking out your Facebook page just by word-of-mouth, your page is generating buzz and your content is interesting enough for mutual acquaintances to take notice. Even if friends of your current fans aren’t your ideal customers, they’re opening you up to their own fans. Non-target fans may not have the most immediate return for your business but remember that they have their own personal network of connections. Fan satisfaction begets good recommendations, and over time the most unlikely fans can have positive effects on your business.