Vertical networks (or vertical social networks) connect people who have very specific interests or passions. To be considered a vertical network, the focus of that group must be a specific niche, but the breadth of that niche can be quite broad within it. The “vertical” refers to the subject matter.
If your target audience is part of a vertical social network, you may be able to integrate that network into your inbound or content marketing strategy. This can also apply to niche groups within broader social networks like Facebook & Linkedin groups.
From a marketing perspective, vertical networks enable targeting for advertising or engagement but could be equally helpful for product or service development. For some time now, smart marketers have been using social platforms to build & nurture vertical networks that are relevant to their brands, and encourage the members to interact.
Sometimes a vertical might be location based – like a local community facebook group where the “vertical” is that the people are interested in that region – or it might be topic based – like a group interested in freshwater fishing that could be international. Vertical Networks may not be follow the demographics of old-school marketing, because they are about people rather than age, gender or income. There is a myriad of possibilities from people interested classic cars, a particular football team & first-time parents to industry-specific discussions or vegan food recipe sharing.