One of the foundational pieces of any successful content marketing strategy is to know your target audience inside and out. Knowing your audience helps you grow your business in a number of ways, like improving brand awareness, targeting your marketing, and boosting your conversion rate.
By now as a business owner, you’ve likely heard the advice to hone in on a specific audience. But identifying (and reaching) this audience actually is 100% essential, especially if you plan to focus on content marketing.
With a clear audience in mind, you can focus on your customers’ needs, struggles, pain points, and desires. Even better, you’ll know who you’re trying to reach and how to reach them effectively.
Plus, you’ll save time and money in honing your marketing to reach the right people. When you know your target audience, you can focus on the people that matter most.
What Is A Target Audience?
Let’s start off with a quick definition of what a target audience actually is. Basically, it’s the specific group of people your brand is appealing to and targeting.
Whether you offer products or services, your business offers a solution to some problem or need your target audience is facing. This specific group of people is likely to convert because they’re incredibly interested in what you have to offer!
And knowing your target audience means you can speak directly to those key, warm audience members in your content marketing.
You’ll want to define an ideal audience based on demographics, behaviors, and other characteristics. The more specific you are, the better!
Why Is Defining Your Target Audience Important?
When you understand why it’s important to define your target audience, you’ll be much more motivated to do the work and identify that audience in your business.
Many of us skip over this integral piece of our business identity…but it’s one of the most important parts of running your business effectively.
1. You Narrow WHO You’re Talking To In Your Marketing and Copy
There’s a popular saying that’s super true when it comes to your marketing: if you’re talking to everyone, you’re not talking to anyone.
Marketing is supposed to be personal! You need to connect with people on a deep level. Instead of trying to widely appeal to every single person online, you want to specifically hone in on your target audience.
When you narrow down your target audience, you know exactly who you’re talking to—which helps you be more persuasive, engaging, and relatable.
2. You Can Tailor Your Solutions To Their Problems
You’ll not only know who you’re talking to—you’ll also know their problems (and how to solve them).
A huge part of effective content marketing is tailoring your offer or solution to your audience’s perceived problem. When you know exactly what your target audience struggles with, you can truly empathize and understand their point of view.
And this lets you pinpoint opportunities for your business to provide solutions and alleviate those challenges.
3. You Can Be More Strategic In Your Marketing
Another key benefit of identifying your target audience is that your content marketing will be MUCH more strategic. Marketing is all about promoting your business, but it also involves connection, engagement, inspiration, education, and persuasion.
All of those factors are much easier when you fully understand your target audience! And if you’re planning to outsource your marketing (I’m here to help, of course!) you’ll be able to effectively delegate and see results from your marketing.
4. You Know What Language and Messaging To Use
In your marketing, you’ll need to write (or outsource) effective copy. And when you know your target audience, you’ll know exactly what language to use and when.
Being relatable is essential for great content marketing. But in order to be relatable, you have to speak to a specific audience and know them on a deep level. That’s exactly what your target audience is for!
You also need to know how your audience talks about their problems so that you can use their words and build trust quicker! After all, nothing’s more relatable than when something feels like it came straight out of your own thoughts.
5. You Can Refine Your Offerings
Another benefit of identifying your target audience is that you can strategically tailor your products or services to reflect your customers’ needs. When you fully understand your target audience, your marketing improves…but so do your offerings.
You’ll also be able to quickly identify new opportunities and adapt to serve your audience in a changing market.
How To Identify Your Target Audience
Now that you know why it matters, let’s take a closer look at how you can start working towards knowing your audience.
Do Some Strategic Client Research
It’s key to do past and current client research to help you identify any commonalities. Look at who is on your email list and who has inquired after your offers.
Here are some questions to consider when compiling research about your past and current clients:
- How did they find you?
- What are their challenges?
- How do they talk about their problems?
These factors will help you start to build an avatar to represent your ideal audience.
Use Social Media To Do Some Research
Social media is a valuable tool for conducting audience research. You can create polls, surveys, and engagement posts to find out more about your current audience. Or, research what types of content and users your target audience interacts with most.
Another way to use social media for identifying your target audience is to research your competitors. Although your audience is unique to you, there may be some valuable information and similarities you can discover through your competitors on social media.
Redefine Your Target Audience As Needed
Finally, remember that it’s okay (and encouraged!) to redefine your target audience over time. As your business grows, your needs and goals will shift with your business—and that’s totally normal.
It’s just important to re-evaluate and adjust your definition of your ideal audience so that you can continue to strategically plan your content.
Your target audience is an incredibly important foundation for effective content marketing. Let’s chat about how to improve your content marketing today!