When it comes to starting a business, a lot of folks make the mistake of having a target audience that’s too broad. And I get it. We often think that the way to make money in business is to sell our product or service to everyone. But let me fill you in on why that’s not really right. When we have too broad of an audience we end up trying to market to everyone, which translates into marketing for no one. People have varied interests and needs and different reasons for purchasing something. By niching down, you’ll be able to focus on your messaging and why you’re the best person to purchase from. If you’re struggling to find your target audience, here are five ways to help you figure out who they should be.
Create an Ideal Client Avatar
This goes beyond just basic demographics. I really want you to create a person that would be likely to buy what you’re offering and think about the attributes that they have. Give this person a name and pretend they are your biggest fan. Do they like to read? What are their hobbies? What’s their favorite social media platform (if they even have one)? Married? Kids? Create 1-3 avatars that could represent different people in your target audience. This will help later on with marketing and messaging because you’ll know exactly who you’re talking to.
Figure out Pain Points and the “Purchase Path”
Why would someone want to purchase from you? What problem are you solving? Be specific. If you’re a photographer, maybe you’re solving clients wanting someone that understands their culture or makes them feel comfortable. If you sell notebooks, maybe you’re solving for the person that wants beautiful stationery or is looking to get motivated to stay organized. Once you figure out potential pain points you can determine what’s the most likely “purchase path” aka sales funnel. This will help you guide potential clients into making purchases.
Know Your Existing Clients
One of the best ways to figure out your target audience is to know more about who is already interested in you. If you have past clients, ask them why they choose you. Write down their demographics and where they found you. Look at your website and social media analytics. Who is visiting your site, how are they navigating it, and which website pages are people visiting the most? Look at who follows and engages with your posts on social media. You likely already have a ton of information that’s available to you. Take a deep dive into it!
Look at Who Your Competitors Target
Figuring out who your competitors are targeting can help you figure out whether you are targeting the same audience or a completely different one. If you’re a social media manager, maybe a competitor targets only podcasters. Is that who you want to target? Figuring out who others in your field are marketing to can help you determine who is and isn’t the right audience for you.
Don’t Stay Stagnat
As you grow in your business, you’ll be more likely to weed out those who you no longer want to serve or who you really want to target more. Don’t let finding your target audience be a one-time activity. Continuously look at who fits into your audience and whether that still makes sense for your business.