Target- It’s more than just a store!

Hey, friends!

So, you’ve put a lot of thought into your brand.  You’ve narrowed down the way in which you’ll serve your community, and you’ve figured out what makes you so special.

What next?

It’s time to figure out who your target audience is.  

You might be wondering why you even need a target audience anyway.  Well, having a specific idea who who your customers are is going to save you a lot of time and energy.

Think of it this way- you could climb onto your roof and shout your message at the top of your lungs.  Are people going to hear you? Yes. Are all of the people who hear you actually going to need your service?  No. Time is one of your most valuable assets. Don’t waste it on “big picture” ideas when a more focused approach can can you more leads.

Your service could definitely be something that is used by everybody.  If you do, that’s fantastic! Defining your target audience is not going to exclude anyone from obtaining your service, it’s just going to make it easier to connect with people who may have a greater need for it.

The easiest way to start figuring out your target audience is to think about demographics.  Age, gender, socioeconomic status, location, etc. If you’re selling surfboards, should you really be trying to sell to retirees in Kansas?  It’s always possible that there’s a market there, but the bulk of your sales probably aren’t coming from there.

Now, think about your product and what you’ve decided makes it special.  That can also influence who you’re targeting.

If your bakery sells vegan, gluten free muffins you may not get very much business by passing out business cards at the local burger joint.  

It could really helpful to take this a step further and create an avatar.  They’re more than just blue aliens, you know.

An avatar is essentially a profile for your ideal customer.  This can include demographics, pain points, likes and dislikes, and habits.

Does anyone you know kind of fit the mold for your ideal customer?  You could know a real-life version of your avatar, which can provide valuable insight into who your customer is and how you can best serve them.

I’m not saying you need to stalk your friends.  But I am saying that a little inspiration from the world around us never hurt anyone.

It is so, so important to know your target audience.  These are the people you are trying to serve. Shouldn’t you know exactly what they need and how to connect with them?

Once you define your target audience, you need to figure out how to reach them.  Like before, a good starting point is demographics.

Most people have Internet access in some form, and a very good percentage of those people have at least one type of social media.  Are you targeting teenagers? You might want to make sure you’ve got a strong Youtube presence. College students? Maybe you should focus on Instagram.  

Many niches are also going to have forums that might allow marketing.  Make sure you check out the rules on each forum before posting. You don’t want to get immediately banned if they don’t allow direct marketing or something.

Do a little research about your specific audience to try to prevent wasting time in the wrong arenas.  And yes, there will be some overlap since many people are active on multiple social media platforms.

Start by focusing on one or two platforms at a time.  Don’t overwhelm yourself by trying to do too much. You can always branch out to more platforms later on.

Guys, your target audience is key.  I cannot stress that enough. Defining who it is that you’re trying to help is going to save you time, energy, and resources.  It will help simplify your marketing strategy, and it will help you achieve your dreams. And isn’t that the ultimate goal?

Now, breathe.  You’ve totally got this.

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