Knowing Your Target Audience
I know. TRUST ME, I know…
I know more than most people know about you.
By people, I mean people showing you ads right now.
In the digital age where general privacy for your information is pretty much dead, you can target your ads to just about anyone.
The memes and jokes about you having a thought and then Facebook or Instagram start showing you ads about it are real.
The algorithms are so complex and smart that they take data online and offline to predict what you are going to want to see.
With this incredible ability to target who you want to see your ad, why is it not easier to sell my product or service?
Why doesn’t my audience buy if I am showing it to the right person?
Let’s pretend that your targeting is on point. There is a very CRUCIAL factor that 80% of people leave out.
You have to know your audience and speak to them directly.
Writing your marketing message in a general term will resonate with the people desperate for your product or service and everyone else won’t be influenced enough by what you said.
Deeply understanding your target audience is not always easy. People will generally start at demographics (age, gender, location, job title, etc) and then throw in a little psychographics (interests, hobbies, books they read, etc.) and that is it.
That is only the tip of knowing your audience and we all know the tip doesn’t count.
We must dive into the mind of our target audience and answer almost 20 questions to get a really good understanding of them.
5 Questions To Know Your Target Audience Better
Here are five questions to consider when knowing your audience. Don’t just write a single sentence and think you are done. Spend the time here to thoroughly answer these questions and you will see the difference later on.
- What are their current problems?
This one seems simple right? Give it more thought. The problem might not just be the single thing you answer for them. For example, a business owner who needs more leads has multiple problems. He can’t grow his business without more leads, his current workload could be slowing down, he is losing revenue because his old methods don’t work anymore, he might be laying off staff, competitors are taking his clients, and I am sure there are more.
The ideal problems to really outline are ones that are tangible, real, measurable, and external. This is where if you are talking to a specific person, then you can really dive into what is relevant and relatable to them. This will help you cut through the noise of everyone else that is marketing to them.
Find their core problems and then in your messaging, show them that you understand and then twist the knife a little.
- What behaviours are they doing as a result of these problems?
This is what they are physically doing, not thinking, as a result of the problem they have. What actions are they doing as a result of their current problems?
For example, the same business owner previously mentioned is trying to outwork their lead issue. They work weekends and later hours now when they didn’t before. They are trying to get jobs they didn’t want in the past because they were too small or not worth it. They are skipping lunches and not eating right, they are having restless nights, and they are asking other business owners what they are doing.
Understanding what they are physically doing means I can call it out in my copy and I can also target specific locations I know they will be in. A headline like, “Trying to outwork a bad marketing strategy will leave you will sleepless nights…” will deeply resonate with a business owner who not just understands that he is doing it, but really feels it. Think about what unique behaviours your target audience is doing as a result of their problems.
- What are the top five things they THINK are the answer to the problem?
Think is the keyword here. Sometimes people don’t know what they don’t know. Your target audience might not understand how to actually solve their problem but they think they do.
For example, our business owner thinks that he should run a TV or radio ad. He also thinks he needs to go to some more networking events and hire a sales guy, or that Google AdWords/SEO will solve it. He may also think he should spend a huge chunk of cash on an agency, a new website will solve it, and rebranding will help.
Some of these could work but most of them he doesn’t understand at all. These are just thoughts. He doesn’t understand what he should put on TV or how much an agency will actually cost. He just has these as ideas of how he could solve his problem.
What makes outstanding copy is being able to enter the conversation inside your prospects’ mind. By understanding what they think is the problem, you can enter that conversation and lead it to the information you want them to know.
- What are the top five things that ARE the answer to their problem?
This is something they may not know and you are not always the answer.
Of course, your product or service is where we want to influence them, but if you can understand what their options are, you can also use it to compare why you are the best out of the top answers.
For example, our handsome business owner needs a well thought out marketing strategy and implementation. He needs a website or landing page that converts traffic into leads and he needs ads targeted at the right audience that influence them to click. He could also joint venture with a non-competing company that has the same audience.
There are many things they can do but when you talk about them and show them the options and why you are the most ideal for this specific audience, you will influence the people you have targeted your ad to.
You can frame the information you want them to see that will influence them to take action.
- How will their average day change after they engage with you?
When you understand that people don’t buy your product or service, they buy what it gives them, then you can see why knowing this is so critical. How are you changing your target audience’s day-to-day life?
For example, we change business owners’ lives when they partner with Black Lion Digital. They have confidence each day about growing their business. They have consistent leads coming in that make them feel comfortable. They sleep better knowing that someone is looking after it for them. They start to plan for bigger things and they start to plan to take more holidays. They have to start to hire and ensure their operations are optimised for the workload. Most importantly, they get excited about new marketing ideas they come up with because it is now fun and exciting rather than a burden of the unknown.
Knowing this and describing it in your marketing means you have the ability to put them into an emotional state that will influence them to take action. You can really map out their desired end state and connect with them on a deeper level than just a logical choice. With this, you can give them a taste of how it will feel once they take action now.
These are just five of the many questions we look at when understanding someone’s target audience. We create a document for EACH of our client’s target avatars. You would have 2-4 types of buying that would all have different answers to the above questions. If you really want to resonate with them and cut through all the noise out there, then you need to take the time to deeply understand your target audience.