Target audience and positioning are the core elements of your brand strategy. The target audience is the intended audience — or people — for your product, service, marketing or content. Customer personas dive a little deeper. These are profiles you create to represent significant groups of similar people within your designated target audience(s).
In order to successfully market your brand, you need to identify who it is that you are trying to appeal to. Defining your audience by the numbers (i.e., age, gender, income, education level, geographic location) allows you to hone in on who your customers are. By getting into the nitty-gritty details of where they live, work and their interests, you can avoid oversimplifying these numbers.
Remind yourself that you’re dealing with people, not statistics. Marketing is about how we can affect behaviors, so we really need to understand our audience.
How do you define your target audience?
First, determine who is in the top 20% that’s driving 80% of your business. Focus on them as your primary audience. If you are a start-up, who was the primary group — or your Ideal Customer Avatar (ICA) — you designed the product or service for?
Step #1: Define your audience. Are they male? Female? Age? Household income? Married? Kids? Location? Education level? Take a look at your sales data and talk to your team to determine who are your best customers. Note the common demographic traits.
Step #2: Dive deeper into what makes your audience tick. What motivates them? What are their pain points? Where do they get their information about your product or service type? What factors affect their buying or spending habits? What do they like to do outside of work? Maybe, what does a typical day look like for them?
How do you define customer personas?
Customer or audience personas are extremely helpful in determining who your audience is in real life. Within your primary or secondary audiences, what are the significant groups that you can identify? Can you create a character from that type of person?
Write a story about this person that includes a name, geographic location, age, marital status, family (maybe it’s a friend group) and profession. Tell us about where they shop, dine, what activities they enjoy, what they read or listen to and what social media platforms they like to engage with on a regular basis.
Next, define WHY the customer needs you. Create cause and effect between the character story and their needs that you solve for.
Don’t know where to start your demographic research? Here are some resources to get you pointed in the right direction:
- Demographics Now (Library Edition can be found online at your local library)
- Social media insights
- Google Analytics
- Sales and customer data
- Social chatter and competitive review
To help you find your ideal client, we start with a clean slate. We determine your niche and unique-solve from your customer’s perspective. Our brand strategy process uncovers what the target audience needs from your brand and defines customer personas that includes hobbies, interests and demographics.
What does this inform? Advertising, language, marketing decisions, visual brand, content…all built specifically for your audience. Are you thinking about your brand like your target audience is? Not sure? Let’s talk.