Identifying and Understanding Your Audience

Understanding your audience is key to creating a successful marketing plan for your small business. To formulate a marketing campaign that attracts your target audience, you must tailor your message to their needs. Here’s how you can identify and get familiar with your audience.

Analyze your customer base

To market your product in a way that targets the needs and goals of your ideal customer, you must first understand your customer base. Understanding your customer base involves carrying out an in-depth analysis of your archetypal customer.

When conducting this analysis, your goal should be to identify and describe your target audience’s longings, desires, needs, and challenges. Outlining the details of the primary aspects of your ideal customer’s behavior makes it easier to predict their buying habits.

The first step in analyzing your customer base involves having a clear idea of who your target audience is. To help conjure up a clear image in your mind, focus on some clear-cut features, such as geographical location, age, values, personality, income, and social class. Then, you can create a buyer persona to sum up your findings and conclusions.

Create personas

A customer profile is one of the ultimate goals of customer analysis. It is an idealized representation of your “perfect” client based on the information you’ve gathered. The buyer’s persona, a closely related concept, represents the various ways your customer profile can present itself in the real world. In other words, the customer profile is the archetype, while buyer’s personas are the manifestations of that archetype.

When creating personas, it’s necessary to keep them simple and easily understandable. This helps you visualize your potential clients’ personas and work towards attracting them.

Segment your audience

One major benefit of customer profiling is that it allows you to identify similar traits among your audience. Based on these traits, you can proceed to divide your audience into segments. Doing this will make it easier to create tailored marketing plans for each segment instead of using a one-size-fits-all approach. 

The segments you should divide your target audience into largely depend on your goals as a company. For example, the geographical location might be a vital basis for segmentation for a small local business. However, if your company has adequate logistics and transportation solutions, geographical location is hardly of importance.

Develop key action points

This is where the practical stage in the target marketing process begins. After successfully dividing your target audience into manageable segments, you need to create an actionable marketing plan for each division.

Note that your target audience must have direct access to whatever marketing outlet you choose. Digital marketing outlets are a good option because they have a wide reach.

Perform market research

Studying the gaps in the market where some demands are left unsatisfied paves the way for creating a product that fills those gaps. Furthermore, to stand out, your product must bring something unique to the industry.

Researching your competitors avails you of the opportunity to learn from both their right decisions and their pitfalls. Market research is pivotal to the success of any business because it allows you to narrow down your target audience. Outlined below are a few simple steps for conducting market research.

  • Identify the problem and define your research objectives: The first step to satisfying a need is recognizing it. Pinpoint the problem your product is looking to solve and build your research around that. Your research should be aimed at getting your audience’s point of view and evaluating the possible solutions to the problem.
  • Design your research: How do you plan to meet your research objectives? Create an effective plan for gathering all the needed information.
  • Collate the data and analyze it: From the collated data, draw definite conclusions that are likely to be valuable to your business in the long term.

Talk to your audience

Although research is very important, it can only take you so far. Truly understanding your target consumers’ thought processes and demands require direct communication. Additionally, customer analysis is incomplete without direct input from the customer. You can get this input through reviews, surveys, questionnaires, interviews, and forums.

You can also study passive audience input–the type garnered from digital analytics. The data gotten from your website, mobile app, or online store can help in monitoring trends and predicting online behavior. Additionally, this information is crucial for formulating future marketing campaigns.

A highly effective way to connect with your audience is through reviews. Listen to their complaints and praise, and try to figure out how to improve your products to better satisfy their needs. Notice how they utilize your product–you may find surprising new uses for your products/services.

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