5 things you need to know about your target audience
How well do you know your target audience? I mean really know them?
Not just the basic demographic information (age, gender, location etc). But the really important stuff that makes them tick.
What motivates them? What challenges do they face? What influences their purchasing decisions? What other products or services might they also be considering? What does their typical day look like?
Vital information to know if you want to reach your ideal customers with the right message, in the right place at the right time.
But how do you get started with really getting to know your target audience?
How to get to know your target audience
A great place to start is by creating a customer avatar – a fictional, detailed profile of your ideal customer that gives you clarity on their key characteristics.
Why is this so important? Because when you’re clear on who your customers are, any part of the marketing or sales process that reaches them will massively improve.
Investing time in creating a clear picture of your ideal customer will greatly help you:
- Develop products or services that sell more easily (because they deliver on a genuine customer need)
- Create engaging marketing messaging that resonates with your customers (and moves your them to action – i.e., make a purchase, subscribe to your email list, sign up to a workshop etc)
- Improve virtually every aspect of your marketing (and make you more money!)
Top Tip: You’ll likely need to create more than one customer avatar unless your product or service is particularly niche. As a guide, creating two or three distinct avatars is fairly typical.
The 5 things you need to know about your customers
Understanding your ideal customer will influence your content marketing strategy, social media activity, copywriting, promotional campaigns, pricing strategies and more.
There are five core things you need to know about them:
Goals and values:
You need to understand what your ideal customer is trying to achieve. And what he or she really values. This underpins motivation and what shapes their purchasing decisions (make a note of those that are relevant to your products or services).
Example: A busy mum is looking for lunchbox snack ideas for her school-age children but is unhappy with what she’s seen in the supermarkets. What is she actually trying to achieve? She’s likely looking for a healthy (and filling) snack that her kids will love, so that she knows they’ve eaten well at school and will concentrate on their lessons post-lunch. Her values? This mum values her children’s health and education.
A savvy brand will weave these insights into their marketing communications and be sure to connect with the mum in a way that is aligned with her goals and values (So for example, will talk to health/well-being and high-quality ingredients that taste great, rather than to price).
Where they seek information and entertainment:
Consider where your ideal customer goes to for information and entertainment. Which books do they read? Magazines? Blogs? News sources? Which social media platforms are they on (if any)?
Understanding where your ideal customers are seeking information (essentially where they hang out) will influence your content marketing strategy, choice of social media platform(s), advertising decisions and more.
Delving into demographic information helps bring your customer avatar to life. Start by jotting down the basics – their age, gender, marital status, job and location. You might also like to think about whether they have children (and if so, their ages) – as this can often have a huge impact on their motivations and decision-making process.
Being able to visualise your ideal customers (literally, imagine them sitting across the table from you!) is hugely beneficial when it comes to developing your products or services, making decisions about the wording you’ll use in your marketing campaigns, and so much more.
Frustrations and pain points:
Unlocking customer frustrations and pain points – really getting inside their head – will impact pretty much all of your marketing efforts.
You can use these insights to:
- Create products or services that truly provide solutions to your customer’s challenges and pain points (add value to their lives)
- Ensure that you use language that addresses their challenges and pain points in your marketing communications and show that you ‘get’ them (compel them to action)
Reasons not to buy:
Why might your ideal customer choose not to purchase your products or services? Typical objections (and questions for you to consider) are:
- “I can get it cheaper elsewhere” (but it is the same quality?)
- “I can’t afford it right now” (are they waiting for pay day?)
- “I can teach myself how to do that” (but will they actually put it into action?)
- “I’m confused by the number of options available” (can you help them narrow it down?)
- “I haven’t got time” (is it a priority for them just now?)
By addressing these objections upfront in your marketing copy, you’ll be able to position your offering in the best possible way.
And if they still don’t buy from you? They likely don’t fit your customer avatar (and you shouldn’t worry about it!). Instead focus on delighting those who do, and you will flourish.
Need help developing your customer avatar?
We love working with our small business clients to help them unlock the opportunities that come from really understanding their customers!
Here’s what meditation expert Laura Coleman said about her 1-2-1 consultation with Marketing Vision:
I was looking to get more clarity on who my ideal customer is for my business Be.Modern Meditation. Paula helped me drill down and understand my customer avatar and also gave me the tools to revisit and understand it. Her knowledge and expertise is really varied and wide ranging, and I gained a lot from our session. She asked helpful clarifying questions and I came away with a clear and actionable plan. Beyond our session she has been so engaged and supportive of me and my business. She regularly sends me helpful hints or leads to follow up. Get her on your team – she’s small business gold!
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