There are many ways to be influential online. Blogging, posting and sharing are all ways to get your message and your voice out there, but how do you know who’s listening, who’s paying attention and in which ways? In order to get a key message posted and recognized, the most important part is to know your target market. In this way, your messages and posts can be targeted and constructed in a way that will be relevant and that will resonate with your followers.
There are necessary steps to stay attentive to in order to understand who your target audience is and some of them include the following:
1. Identify the different types of buyers/followers
Use tools like Google Analytics to understand where your audience comes from, what they are looking at to round out your customer profile. This will help you identify how your product and services will benefit them and in turn who your biggest competitors are as well. This may include age, gender, location, ethnic background, marital status, income, and more. As well as information that goes beyond the “external” and identifies more about a customer’s psychology, interests, hobbies, values, attitudes behaviors, lifestyle, and more.
2. Research, research, research
See whom they are talking to online and what they like to do online and offline. Think outside the box when it comes to creating marketing strategies for your target audience. You want to catch their attention, make them notice you and somehow appeal to them enough to get them to take action and buy your product or service. Find out who your potential customers are and who they’re followers are. Basically, research from many different perspectives to really understand who you’re beginning to build conversations with.
3. Build a connection and credibility with your community
Find out what the commonalities are, where they are and what their interests are and create content that will interest that specific group. Give resources and things that will be helpful to your audience so you are not straightaway just asking them to notice you, but you are offering them useful information and/or products/services. If you can identify common traits, you can target similar people.
4. Appeal to your market
According to the marketing blog, vertical response, ask yourself these questions…
- Does my product have other uses?
Maybe you sell organic shampoo. Can it also be used as body wash or laundry detergent? Is it particularly good for babies or those with sensitive skin?
- Can I create new products or services my current customers would buy?
If I run a yoga studio, would my customers also be interested in other types of exercise classes?
- Are there services I can offer along with my product?
Customers of a plant nursery may need landscape design help. What other services are they getting elsewhere that you can provide?
5. Monitor, evaluate and differentiate yourself from competitors
Who are your competitors and what do they offer your target audience? Do they appeal to your audience on an emotional level? Now that you know your target audience, figure out how you’re going to evaluate and track interactions, requests for more information and other such communications.
Remember that once you’ve gotten an idea of who you’re marketing to, the work doesn’t end there, in fact, it’s just beginning. Create content that will be the foundation for conversation and inspire your audience to believe in you and your services.
What are the best practices that you’ve used to figure out who your target market is?