What Is A Target Audience & How Do You Define Yours
The term target audience may seem confusing at first, but it is a crucial part of business development. Knowing who you want to engage or sell to is a cornerstone of the foundation upon which you are building your business.
A target audience is the thinnest slice of the market that you can focus on, from which all of your marketing decisions are based. This audience is the focal point of your decisions, making sure that your efforts are tailor-made to find them and draw them in.
A target audience is the ideal customer or avatar that you have in mind when you are creating and selling. They are the image in your head when you imagine the perfect person or scenario for your product or service.
Creating an avatar is simple when you take the time to ask yourself specific questions about your target audience:
- Are they a man or a woman?
- How old are they?
- Where do they live?
- What do they do for a living?
- How do they spend their time?
- What is the need that you provide a solution for?
Here’s an example of an avatar created for a podcast for entrepreneurs:
Bob is a 31-year-old male who commutes 40 minutes to work, five days a week. He is bored with his commute and his current work assignment. He wants to start his own business but doesn’t know where to begin. He wants to be inspired by other men and women who have taken the risk to open their own businesses and are making it happen.
In this scenario, Bob is the target audience. By knowing exactly who the podcast is designed for, the podcast host and website owner can create an experience tailor made for Bob. The colors of the website, the content of the interviews, the coaching, the resources, and the sales that come from them can all be designed looking for Bob.
Having an avatar doesn’t mean you won’t sell to a wider variety of customers; you absolutely will. Having an avatar means you are clear and defined about who your ideal customer is for this product or service at this time. This allows you to create marketing materials that are on target for your client.
The key to having a successful sales experience is knowing exactly who is buying your product. Understanding and defining your target audience is the best strategy there is. This saves you valuable time and money developing your business.
Why Is It Important To Have A Firm Understanding Of Who Your Target Audience Is?
Creating content and bringing potential customers into your funnel is key to beginning the sales conversion. Having a clearly defined target audience is the crucial step towards selling. It is important to have a firm understanding of who your target audience is so you can create content that speaks directly to them.
If your business is designed to sell designer clothing for toddlers and children, it is crucial to know who is buying the clothes. You are not selling to toddlers and children. You are selling to parents, grandparents, and other adults who hold a high value for designer clothing.
Peeling this back further, we see hidden elements that must also be considered when understanding this market; the ideal customer for designer clothing for toddlers and children is:
- Middle to upper income
- Places high value on their kids’ appearance
- Likely shops on-line or boutiques
- Has discerning tastes
- Has high potential for repeat purchases
What does knowing this information do for you as a business owner? Knowing this helps you make crucial decisions about where to advertise and how to engage the audience. Instead of casting a wide net and hoping to find a few discerning parents or grandmothers ready to buy, you can apply targeted and focused ads and content directly to men and women who are looking for your designer clothing. The sale is made effortlessly because there are no roadblocks to the purchase. By finding and plugging into the market who wants you, you are there solving a problem that they had and are willing to pay for; finding quality clothing for their tastes and budget.
Knowing who you are selling to is especially important for your marketing decisions. It comes in handy when creating Facebook ads, posting to Pinterest, or using SEO for blog posts or online content. Being able to narrow down your market creates a bigger pool of potential customers. This saves your money and gives you a bigger ROI for your marketing investment.
Being able to sell your goods or services is easier when you know who your target audience is and where they live. Once you know these crucial pieces, you can make valuable marketing decisions, speak directly to your best customer base, and rest assured your business will thrive. Get excited about finding your ideal customer and providing what they need.
Helpful Information About Your Target Audience And How To Find It
Finding your target audience and creating an avatar to focus on is the cornerstone of the foundation of your business. Knowing who you are selling to and what they are like is the key to effortless sales.
An avatar is a specific person who perfectly embodies the elements of your ideal customer. If an image were posted of your ideal customer theirs would be front and center. They are likely the inspiration for your business when you created it.
In this day and age with Facebook ads, SEO and other algorithms, it is possible to hone in on the market in such a way that you can fine tune your advertising so specifically that your investments in your message are sure to get a return.
But how do you do that? How do you hone in on the market so concisely?
First, spend time thinking about your product or service:
- What does your product do?
- What problem does it solve?
- Who is it designed for?
- Who makes the decision to purchase your product or service?
Next, think about who benefits the most from your product or service:
- What problems do they face?
- What is their pain point?
- What solutions are they looking for?
- What language do they use?
- Where do they shop?
- How do they identify themselves in the marketplace?
- What do they do for a living?
- What rationale do they use to make decisions?
- How do they spend their free time?
Asking yourself these types of questions helps define your target audience. The defining factors can be translated to the categories available to you for sponsored ads, or the language you use when you write content. The more you know the better you can speak directly to your audience.
Once you have asked yourself these questions, test out your theories. Social media is an excellent way to screen your tribe to see who is a potential customer. Ask questions, pose scenarios and see who bites.
Use tools like
- Surveys– Post a survey on social media to test a theory or ask a question.
- Contests– Gather data by holding a contest that gathers information about your target audience’s habits.
- Split Testing– Create graphics or titles for your goods or services and test which get more traction.
- Forced Choice Testing– Create a dynamic where one of two choices must be made and see which gets the most attention.
- Observation– Pay close attention to your surroundings and see what behaviors your customers have in common.
These tools help you define your target audience and your avatar in no time at all, speeding up the process for marketing and sales.
The Benefits Of Dividing Your Target Audience Into Sub-Groups
Defining a target audience is a first step in the sales funnel. Developing an ideal customer in your mind is an important way to focus your marketing resources and save you time and money acquiring a sale.
Once you have discovered your audience and began to engage them, it is beneficial to create sub-groups that further define and market specifically-designed goods and services.
If you are in the self-help world and write books, it is important to have sub-groups of the customers to set apart those who are parents, married, or divorced, or empty nesters. Each of these sub-groups has specific needs that you can address through your targeted marketing.
Let’s look at the benefits of dividing your audience into sub-groups…
- Tailor-Made Messaging– Being assigned to a sub-group creates the opportunity for tailor-made messaging that speaks crystal clear about the need and the benefit for the goods and services. Selling to motor cycle owners is one thing; selling to Harley owners who ride in Harley clubs taking Poker Runs is even better. Knowing more about the sub-group means you can use very specific language and tone of voice that the group resonates with. This increases your credibility and your sales.
- Creating Long Standing Relationships– As customers fall into your funnel and engage with you, they begin to know, like, and trust you and your products. The more you know about them in general, the better you can engage with them and share your genuine interest in their wellbeing. You can filter the information you send them so it is the most relevant and important for their needs.
- Establishing Your Credibility– When you engage a market, you likely have multiple messages that when broken down, share one unifying message. Creating a sub-group allows you to establish your credibility with a wider range of customers on a wider platform. This gives your audience the opportunity to see sides of you that they may not have otherwise. Your audience defines you as the authority in the area as you engage them specifically.
- Content Creation– Having defined sub-groups makes content creation a breeze. Whether you are creating blog posts, emails or sales pages. Making a widget or developing a class or webinar, you can create content effortlessly with a sub-group. If you teach web design and have taught a webinar titled Web Design 101, you can direct these customers into a sub-group and teach enhanced skills.
- Repeat Sales– Ideally, we are in relationship with our audience and the goal is to do repeat business. Having sub-groups creates the opportunity to take customers on a journey or to sell to them in a way that is genuine and authentic. Creating relationships, establishing credibility, creating content, and tailoring a message all lead to repeat sales. Marketing decisions can be clear when you direct customers into sub-groups and you know exactly what you want to sell to them and why.
Once you have defined your target audience, you can easily create sub-groups that increase your relationships, help make content and marketing decisions and makes sales easier.
Marketing Directly To Your Target Audience
Once you have created and defined your target audience, it is time to engage them, establish rapport, and give them useful information that sells.
The more you know about your audience, the better you can speak to them in their voice with their preferred lexicon and examples. The higher your credibility, the easier it is to convert them into paying customers who come back again and again for more.
Here’s how to market directly to your target audience:
Create Content Specifically Crafted For Your Audience
If your audience is dog owners who love spaniels, it is easier to create meaningful content that meets their specific breed’s needs, solving problems that Spaniel dogs face. Offering products that are unique to Spaniels and their owners. This saves both you and the customer time and money. Because your net isn’t cast wide and far hoping to find a Spaniel owner in a sea of dog breeds, they can trust that you have done your homework about the needs of their Spaniel, effectively getting them to trust your product and buy it.
Use Your Knowledge To Speak Directly To Them In Sales Copy
Online marketing is highly effective and converts if you have clear copy that speaks directly to your market. Knowing your market and creating a tribe that knows, likes, and trusts you increase your ability to write copy that they connect with and accept. When you have alignment between your voice and their ear the conversation is effortless. You aren’t in the mode of convincing them to buy you are simply affirming their desire to do business with you. Use your knowledge about the subject to speak directly to the customer in your sales copy, opt-in pages, emails, calls to action, etc…
Tap Into Your Knowledge About People To Write Highly Converting Emails & Social Media
We all have friends from different walks of life. We speak to our family in one voice and our business associates in another. When we get together with our personal interest groups, we likely use phrases and energy we wouldn’t in any other venue. When you know someone, you know what will draw them in because you speak the same language given the context. Knowing your audience well makes it easy to speak to them in the language they engage and understand. This makes writing emails personal and authentic. Social media posts are effortless and get the clicks and engagement that create momentum and spread the word about your business.
Reach out confidently to your audience and engage them in a way that showcases your expertise and enthusiasm for them and your business.