You can create the most astonishing product or a stunning service, but it will not work if you can not identify your perfect target audience.
Here is why you have to make a precise work of audience analysis to define your target.
By the way, even if the theory looks easy to understand, the practice may be tricky. Why do you have to have a segmented audience? How to segment your public by demographics and interests to identify your target audience ?
Let's see together seven useful tips to run your audience analysis successfully.
Do you know who your target is? You would probably answer, "Absolutely yes!" but… are you so sure?
Imagine that you focused an entire campaign for middle-aged housewives, before discovering that 25-year-old, career girls are your real, spending target.
Knowing those details in advance would have meant a different campaign, better-headed efforts, and a more successful output.
Audience segmentation is crucial for any business, but what is precisely?
Its definition is is the activity of "aggregating prospective buyers into groups or segments with common needs and who respond similarly to a marketing action."
Separating a bigger group into smaller ones allows you to study your target them more accurately. Smaller groups are more homogeneous, and you can guess more precisely habits, preferences and demographic traits. This is ideal for personalizing and tailoring the strategy on almost each one of them, allowing the message to penetrate deeper and stronger through specific, well-selected channels.
As usual in communication, and even more in marketing communication, the fundamental questions are:
You will not be able to create a working strategy - or even an appealing product - if you have no clue of who wants to buy it.
Having a product with no market - or with too many potential users, which is the same - means sure failure. You can avoid this catastrophe by exactly knowing what your audience wants and needs. We are not thinking of buyer personas yet - but we will be there in a minute.
Once you get the basic in the audience analysis demographics, you can go ahead with other, even more, critical data.
Correct audience segmentation is the product of the work of a cohesive, multidisciplinary team during the audience analysis - a process to identify and influence the priority audience.
This is why the actual segmentation is so useful. Knowing the perfect target and segment, it means that you can better focus on the most relevant prospects and activities.
Segmentation is one of the most potent elements of your digital strategy.
Concentrate on the most important target to reach and plan the most effective strategy that will lead you to better sales and happier customers.
You can analyze more precisely any need or preference of your audience and act by consequence, planning the perfect tactics on the right channels to achieve the best marketing result. You need to know by heart your target's needs, customer journey, and customer behavior.
This technique has always been a massive part of marketing strategies.
Now that we know why this analysis is so critical, we can start to deepen the topic and find out how to properly segment and target an audience of interest.
You can produce the most fantastic content in the world, but it is useful only if someone sees it and appreciates it.
This means that you need to know where your audience consumes contents and likes to spend its time. For instance, if you want to reach middle-aged and fashionable women, maybe TikTok is not the best place to go.
One of the most essential elements to keep in mind is that every strategy is personal and unique. This is why it is crucial to adapt techniques and tactics to each audience's situation, analyzing case by case the most useful steps.
However, it does not mean that there is no frame that you can follow to successfully get proper marketing data segmentation to figure out your target audience. Let's see all the main steps together.
Before creating your perfect customer, you need to know how your actual customers look like.
This not means, however, that you can only collect a bunch of information without any clue of how to select and separate them. You need to have a plan, a method.
First of all, define who the people you are talking to are. You need to be extremely precise at this stage.
Do not believe that detail does not matter, because it may be crucial. Collect pieces of data such as age, gender, education, income, type of job, ethnicity, family status (single or married, with one, none or more than one child), age of children, the neighborhood of residence…
You get the picture. This will be useful to understand how and why a single, childfree person with a creative job and a dog may be the perfect customer, and why it is better not to concentrate on families with more than two children living in suburbias and owning a beach house.
Where are your customers? It may be different for you if they live in town or suburbia, in New York or Monowi, the smallest city in America. Can they easily reach your products or they live too isolated, in a small community when everybody knows everybody? Even climate could be a problematic issue - if you sell ice creams or free-standing pools, we would suggest you avoid Alaska.
Audience Interests id usually also referred to as Psychographics data. If demographic research indicates to objective sets of data, psychographic ones are way more personal.
Here you have to focus on what people have inside them. It does not mean that you have to be a psychologist, but that you need to know your target's behaviors and attitudes.
Do they prefer outdoor hobbies or "hygge" lifestyle?
Do they buy a lot or are they minimalists?
Do they watch Netflix, old DVDs, or do they not even have a TV at home? Are they still in love with "Murder, she wrote," or they did not miss an episode of "Game of Thrones," along with passionate live-tweeting of every breathtaking twist?
Moreover, another crucial element of this research is ** people's values**. It is always tricky to touch personal beliefs such as religion, political ideas and cultural habits. Be sure you know, and you are aligned with them, or at least conscious of what they think of specific topics.
Do not forget to specify the life stage your audience is going through.
A 25-year-old girl may be at the beginning of her career and started living by herself a couple of months ago, counting every cent to make ends meet. She is the opposite of a 50-year-old woman, a manager in a multinational company, that is wondering if buying or not that French mountain hut.
Again, all of those details may look redundant, but they will explain your customers' habits and deep reasons. This will make you better explore their feelings and motivations.
Thanks to those pieces of information, you may discover why one of your products is a bestseller, and another one received lukewarm reactions. Now you want to know how your audience acts when it comes to purchasing. Ask them what kind of products they buy, how often they do it and if they are loyal to a specific brand - and discover why.
Try to know which benefits they perceive from their favorite companies and how do they feel about it. Is it widely distributed?
Does it have free shipping costs or home delivery?
Consider if your target is large enough to allow you to stay in the market. This evidence may hurt or worry you.
If there are not enough people that buy the product you want to sell, you should consider if targeting is still a good idea or if it may reduce the prospects too much.
You can know it by analyzing social media, for example - and Ghostwriter.AI could be your best friend for that.
Discover wher your audience is and talks about what they like. With a little luck, they will talk about you, too - and how they do it. It will be the best secret weapon in your hands.
You may wonder how you could collect all of these sets of data. This is huge! There are many ways to do it, for example, interviews and surveys, customers' sets of data collected in the past or live and real-time using AI-based tools like our GhostWriterAI Profiler.
Now that you have all your pieces of data, you need to put them in the right order. You have to segment and clean up all the elements you do not need.
You may discover that you are not interested in specific segments, or that you want to focus on a different one. Pick the most important criteria and combine them to obtain a reliable picture of your segments.
Maybe there is no sense in sub-segmenting too much, or a specific feature is not crucial for your own business.
In this way, you can focus on what matters. Any peculiar difference may set the distance between a primary target, a secondary objective, and a rejected goal. Every group may need a different approach or communication.
You must not underestimate this part of the process.
Now we start being more practical. Again, try not to fall in love with your segmentation and decide you need to use all the profiles, because it may reveal counterproductive.
How can you decide? To begin with, you can pick some of the criteria of the previous section.
Which segment is broader? Is there one of them that is too small? Are they easy to reach and engage? Do they have purchasing power? Do they have too much in common?
Select the most valuable ones and elect them to your real, future target - even separating them in primary and secondary goals, creating a sort of hierarchy.
In this way, you will have a narrow range to focus on. It will be easier to coordinate the upcoming steps, analyze the behavior, and isolate behavioral patterns.
Here we go, our beloved buyer personas are back - we know you were waiting for them. Now we have to dig deeper, letting the single person emerge from the foggy cloud of segmentation. We want to find a real person, with a defined character and sharp passions and tastes.
If you already created your buyer personas, you may want to refresh their image and update them.
If you have never built one of them, what are you waiting for? They are one of the most essential marketing tools you can have.
If you have no idea of how to start and how Artificial Intelligence can help you in this quest, here you can find the article we dedicated to the topic.
Here we are almost at the end of our journey. However, it is not time to relax yet. All of this work of refining has a precise purpose, which is setting the marketing campaigns at their best.
Now that you know how many groups you need to focus, you better start to find out the best way to catch and engage them.
Take advantage of what you have learned to deliver the right message to the different kinds of audiences, according to their language, their touchpoints, and their favorite ways of communicating with brands.
After that, do not forget to analyze the results you obtained and start remarketing campaigns.
This path is charming and useful, but you may feel perplexed. How can you select the right features to segment your audience? How do you know they will work?
The answer is only one - you have to test, see the results you obtain, fix your plan, repeat.
Content Editor. Experience in content creation and copywriting. Passionate about writing and communication.