Marketing to a target audience is something that is recommended to all businesses. Although great advice, it is often too ambiguous to use effectively on it’s own. How do you define your target audience, and what strategies do you develop once you know who they are? Is there a size limit to an audience or do you try and reach out to as many people as you can? Often times, small businesses are left wondering where exactly they should be spending their valuable time and money to gain the highest return on investment. It is time to look more closely at one of the most talked about entities of social media and to develop great marketing strategies for startups.
It is a natural thought to want to advertise your products and services to anyone and everyone, but from a marketing standpoint this strategy is haphazard and ineffective. If you want to truly find your key demographic you will have to NARROW YOUR SCOPE and cut down some of the fat. When looking for your lost keys would you dart back and forth checking every nook and cranny of your car, home, and yard to acquire your end result efficiently? – No! You would concentrate your efforts to the places you know you are more likely to bring your keys in order to find them faster and continue to use your time in another, more productive way. In a similar fashion, you want to focus your social media marketing campaigns to those people who will be more likely to benefit from your product or service so that your efforts don’t go wasted and unnoticed. Nothing is worse then spending hard earned money, cherished time, and great labors on people who were never interested in the first place.
Once you realize that it is okay and actually beneficial to not include the whole world in your marketing strategy, it is time to START RESEARCHING exactly how to focus your audience. Think of classifications such as age, gender, and income then sort through professions and personalities that will be interested in what you are offering. Research companies with a similar mission statement to your own and find where they are placing their efforts. If you are a smaller company breaking out in a larger field, research the marketing strategies and target audience of the top tier companies in your industry. Chances are they have done extensive (and expensive) research to ensure they’re targeting the right people and viewing what they’ve done will be a great starting point for your own marketing approach.
Lastly, what should you post? Knowing your audience and understanding how they think are two very seperate ideas. You want to buckle down and LEARN WHAT MAKES YOUR AUDIENCE TICK so that you may post according to their wants and needs. Now, I’m not saying that if you’re marketing to high school students that you need to re-enroll in your local institute (although that might make for a highly entertaining perspective), but I would recommend really placing yourself in their shoes in order to view the world (and your campaign) through their eyes. What you think someone wants might be entirely different from what they actually desire. Take the product placement shown to the right, for example. You may think that people shopping for baby food would also want baby clothes, diapers, and toys, but what Trojan found was that all these new parents were really looking for was protection in order to limit their hectic situation to one bundle of joy. What seems to appeal to a certain demographic is not always the case and it is up to you to find out your audience’s true (and uncensored) emotions, thoughts, and desires.
With these three steps you can now be up to date and in the know regarding who your key demographic is and why you should be targeting them. Don’t let the term “target audience” daunt you again and good luck with all future business ventures. (Now get to work!)
Copy By: Dana Andersen, Creatine Marketing