We’re starting off the new year with a refreshers blog on target audiences. Understanding and finding your target audience is one of the most important things any business should nail down.
Many businesses think they have a good idea of who their ideal customers are, but shortly after their business gets off the ground, things change. You must have an approach to establish your target audience so it can be as accurate as possible.
If you are not targeting the right people, then you won’t acquire new business. If you don’t acquire new business, then you may not make it a full year.
Let’s start with the basics.
A target audience is a group of people who are most likely to purchase your product or service.
Some of the traits used to describe a target audience include:
For example, if you own a small running shoe business, your target audience will be runners.
Marketing your product without a target audience in mind is aimless and will result in a ton of money wasted on fruitless marketing efforts. Identifying a target audience helps you see what you’re aiming for, thus boosting the chances of hitting your target every time.
While identifying your target audience allows you to understand your ideal customers to deliver targeted campaigns, its scope is still a bit broad. The more specific you define your ideal customers, the more effective you can market to them.
An audience persona is a fictional character representing an individual customer interested in your product or service. Building buyer personas entails zeroing in on your target audience and using data-backed research to pinpoint the archetypes of your ideal customers.
Some of the data you can use to define personas include:
You don’t want to market your brand to everyone because your message will be generic and you will not stand out. Knowing your target audience means you can understand peoples pain points and needs. From here, you can focus your messaging to resonate with their specific needs.
Identifying your target audience allows you to avoid inefficiency. In other words, you won’t waste your marketing budget reaching customers unlikely to purchase your product or service.
More than that, it leads to better use of time. That is, you spend more time nurturing high-quality leads and less time pursuing low-value prospects.
Focusing on a specific target group, speaking about the challenges they face, and offering solutions to those challenges can benefit your brand. It establishes you as an authority in your niche and could win you a loyal customer base.
The more customers you’re able to please by way of meeting demands and building trust, the more likely those customers will be to refer you to their peers. And we all know that the best customers are those that are referred by your existing, loyal customers.
Here’s a three-step process you can follow to identify your target audience:
Look at your product features to determine the specific needs it fulfills. Determine who has those needs.
The answer to these questions will help you uncover who your ideal customers are.
Scope out brands that are already dominating the market and find out who their target audiences are.
You could target the same group or zero in on a niche the competitors overlook, especially if your product or service has a feature that benefits that particular niche.
This won’t work for brand-new startups. However, if you’ve built a commendable customer base, you could dig into existing customers to identify your target audience. Gather and analyze historical data on your existing customers. Ask yourself:
Find commonalities that can help you depict your target audience. Dig deeper to establish psychographic traits like attitude, values, personalities, opinions, and values. Are there shared interests or characteristics? If yes, use them to create a profile of your ideal customers.
Once you identify your target customers, you need to market to them and draw them around your brand. To meet them where they are, you should use the following:
Globally, more than 3.6 billion people use social media. Your target audience hangs out on one of these platforms — and you already know the channel they frequent.
In addition, during your target audience research, you identified how your ideal customers consume content. You also probably know (or have predicted) their favorite websites and podcasts. All you have to do to reach them is to write guest content to place on these websites or offer to be a speaker in the podcasts they follow.
Lastly, explore possible partnerships with brands that have a similar audience. These aren’t competitors, rather companies that provide services to the same people you provide services to.
Identifying your target audience is a crucial step in writing your marketing plan and mapping out your overall business strategy. It’s a step that cannot be overlooked, so make sure you dedicate enough time to figuring it out, and as long as you use this guide, you’ll be doing so successfully.
For assistance with finding your target audience or any of your marketing queries, visit our services or training programs page to see how we can help. Alternatively, you can book in for a Free 30 Minute Discovery Call today!