As technology and marketing grows more sophisticated, we’ve discovered that reaching a large audience and appealing to everyone is not only impossible, but inefficient and costly. As business owners and marketers you understand that one of the most important things you can do is to pick the right target audience for your products or services. But how do you go about doing that? There are a few key factors to keep in mind. In this blog post, we explore how to pick the perfect target audience for your business, tips for creating valuable content and more!
What Is A Target Audience?
First and foremost, what is a target audience? Sprout Social defines a target audience as “a group of people defined by certain demographics and behavior.” Similarly, Hootsuite Blog shared that, “a target market is the specific group of people you want to reach with your marketing message. They are the people who are most likely to buy your products or services, and they are united by some common characteristics, like demographics and behaviors.” Determining your target audience results in knowing who is most likely to purchase your service or product. Below is a list of demographics from Sprout Social that most companies look at:
- Income or education level
- Marital status
According to Marketing Evolution, you can further break your target audience down into three categories:
Separate groups based on their various interests, including hobbies and entertainment preferences. This can help you make data-driven, highly personalized messaging that allows you to connect with your audience in meaningful ways that help drive brand loyalty.
Define groups of people who are looking for a specific product, such as a new entertainment system or car. This helps you understand your audience’s pain points so you can create tailored messaging that addresses their needs.
Subcultures refer to groups of people who share a common experience, such as music genres or entertainment fandoms. By knowing some of your target audience’s motivations, you can better understand who you’re trying to connect with.
Defining Your Target Audience Is The First Step In Successful Marketing
Knowing your target audience is essential in devising successful marketing plans. It helps you target consumers more effectively with the right messaging. Defining your target audience also allows you to optimize how resources are allocated for each individual marketing campaign, as well as offer insights into which platforms and channels should be used for your products and services. Taking these steps provides a more efficient use of time, money and resources, which can lead to increased opportunities for ROI.
Research To Find Your Target Audience
Research is the key to finding your ideal target audience. Consider what problem or need your product/service addresses and focus on those who may benefit from it. Research competitors as well — chances are their customers can be valuable for you too! Learn more about existing clients by leveraging various analysis tools so that you recognize how to draw in new business opportunities.
Be patient with this process as it will take a fair amount of trial and error. When you are finally able to clearly identify your target audiences, you’ll find it easier to grab a consumer’s attention and make a sale.
How Do You Begin?
1. Analyze Your Customer Base And Perform Client Interviews
Gaining insight into your target audience is key for successful marketing. Determine who’s already buying from you and learn more about them. For instance, look at their age, location and interests. To get the most out of this research, try engaging with them on social media or distributing customer surveys! Analyze this data and become familiar with the answers you receive.
2. Conduct Market Research
Researching the market can help you gain a thorough understanding of your place in it and determine where your product or service can fill in any gaps. Learning the trends in your industry is also essential for success. Dive deep and determine precisely where you can focus efforts that show off your product’s distinctive value proposition — what sets it apart from competitors?
3. Analyze Your Competitors
Keeping track of your competitors’ activities on social media helps you gain valuable insights into your own target audience and potential targeting opportunities! Who are they selling to and how?
4. Create Buyer Personas
In a recent article by Three Girls Media’s CEO, Erika Taylor Montgomery, she describes a buyer persona as “a fictional character used in marketing to represent an ideal customer base,” and shares that they “help content creators build highly targeted content marketing strategies. From blogging to social media, buyer personas can be used in all forms of content creation.” Additionally, “allowing buyer personas to guide your content marketing strategies will keep you focused on your customers’ needs, resulting in targeted campaigns. When you create content for individual buyer personas, it will result in content that is highly relevant to a key segment of your audience.”
Now, Focus Your Resources On Reaching Your Audience Effectively
Crafting a communications strategy is about much more than identifying the right platform for messaging. Knowing who you’re talking to and understanding their needs and interests is paramount in creating content that resonates. With a clear understanding of your target audience, you can focus your resources on reaching them with tailored messages that become meaningful conversations. This way, you achieve maximum impact while also building relationships with your customers in a professional yet friendly manner.
Forbes published an article on how to build better relationships with your audience. In it, they share helpful tips for creating valuable content:
Content marketing is more than just creating and distributing content. You need to learn the art of creating content that is relevant and valuable to your target consumers and that can make them take the desired actions.
You should come up with topic ideas that your audience wants to learn about. For this, you can use content research platforms like BuzzSumo or Ahrefs or learn from industry experts. You can also host polls on social media to ask your audience about the kind of content they want to see.
You should leverage multiple content formats to connect with your audience, including blog posts, interactive emails, infographics, photos and videos. You can use design tools such as Canva and Adobe Premiere Pro to create impressive visual content for your audience.
Regardless of the content format and topic you choose, you should create content that:
Addresses the pain points of your audience.
Provides them with real solutions.
Adds value for them.
Is not pushy or sales driven.
They go on to share that storytelling is a method for building strong connections with consumers as stories are “known to capture consumers’ interests, simplify information and provoke emotional responses.” With this in mind, your focus should be on forging emotional connections through your brand, so that its story, values and history are instilled in your audience.
According to Quintype, it’s important that your audience feels heard. Starting a conversation with a consumer from your target audience shows you “care about the individual’s concerns, experiences and opinions. This helps form a connection that makes them loyal to your brand and open to receiving information and context you want to share.” Furthermore, Forbes found that: “People are likely to perceive your brand based on the moments and experiences they have with you. It’s important for you to regularly interact with your target audience and have meaningful conversations. Consumers want real conversations, and those conversations are no longer limited to your customer support services. You should be able to deliver exceptional experiences across multiple customer touch points, with social media being an important one.”
Your Target Audience Will Inform Your Messaging And Content
Choosing the right messaging and content for your target audience is integral to successful communication. Understanding the identity of your target audience, what topics they are interested in and how they like to receive information is key. You need to tailor your delivery style accordingly. For example, you may decide a more informal approach and style of writing will be engaging to a younger demographic, whereas professional language may appeal better to an older audience. Ultimately, customizing your content to fit the preferences and needs of those in your target group can help you to foster meaningful relationships.
Focus On Those Who Are Most Likely To Buy From You
Managing expectations is often an important part of success. It’s impossible to be everything to everyone, so it’s essential for businesses to focus their efforts on connecting with people who are the most likely to purchase products and services. By narrowing your focus to a target audience, you can give those customers what they want and need while avoiding any potential conflicts and dilemmas. This helps you to optimize resources, making sure that you deliver the maximum value possible in order to cultivate relationships with those potential customers. Ultimately, this approach leads to more favorable outcomes and drives more sales for your business.
Keep Your Target Audience In Mind When Making Decisions About Your Business Strategy
When planning the business strategy for your company, it is important to consider who your target audience is. Knowing who you are trying to reach will help you craft messaging and develop campaigns that are meaningful and successful. Think about the language, concepts and images that would be most appealing and impactful for this particular group of people. If a product or service resonates with them in a unique way, they will be more likely to engage with it, contributing to the growth of your business. Your target audience can even provide insights on potential markets or new product offerings that you hadn’t considered before. Keeping their needs at the core of your decisions ensures you remain relevant and can maximize profits over time.
After you have created your target audience and begun tailoring your marketing efforts to appease your segments, don’t forget to check back in periodically and revisit your audiences and strategy. Over time things will change, whether its trends, your brand, your product or service or your desired customers. RVN Creative urges you reexamine your audience “to stay relevant in your industry and amongst competitors,” which they say is key to continued sales and positive ROI.
Defining your target audience is the first, and arguably most important, step to successful marketing. Once you have a handle on who you’re trying to reach, you can focus your resources more effectively and create messaging and content that resonates with them. Keep in mind that your target audience will have a significant impact on other aspects of your business strategy as well, so it’s important to involve them in decision-making from the beginning. Trying to be everything to everyone is a recipe for disaster, but if you focus on those who are most likely to buy from you, you’ll be much more successful in achieving your goals.
This article is intended to help you get started on discovering your perfect target audience. If you need assistance, contact us at Three Girls Media to learn more about our content marketing services. Together, we can design a content marketing strategy that’s perfect for your business.