The very first rule of any savvy marketing campaign is knowing your audience, yet (surprisingly) this is often where brands’ marketing efforts fall flat. Determining who exactly is interested in your product, and how best to position it so they see you, is key to any successful marketing endeavour. Here’s the Zebra 360 Online Marketing team’s top tips to help you ensure you have the right audience, every time- and what to do if you aren’t sure who that is!

Why knowing your audience matters?

The downfall of many a marketing campaign is, as we mentioned, a nebulous idea of who is on the other end of it. We naturally don’t want to exclude anyone who may be interested in our product, so we’re often guilty of leaving the definition of ‘our audience’ very nebulous. It may seem like a good idea- why limit your brand? However, when it comes to positioning your advertising efforts in front of people, it can literally cripple your efforts. The world is a big, big place, especially online, and if all you can say about your audience is that it is ‘everyone’, chances are ‘no one’ will see your resulting campaigns.

Digital saturation is a very real thing. We already use ad blockers and other media to help us filter out some of the way’s brands are trying to colonise our digital landscape. But a lack of a defined audience goes a long way to self-filtering you out of people’s perceptions. Why? Why isn’t a broad audience better?

The answer is simple. There’s lots of other brands, in all sorts of industries, campaigning for people’s limited attention. Chances are you don’t have an unlimited budget to match. If you know exactly who is likely to use your product- from age and location to other interests, family dynamics and other key data- you can laser-focus your efforts on making sure you are visible to them. You can use savvy marketing to interest them, make adverts that appeal to them, and choose brand partners that enrich their lives. Without that information, you’re just randomly splitting your efforts, hoping it catches someone’s attention. Net result? A lot of wasted time and money.

How do I determine my audience?

You may already have the data at hand to create a true ‘customer persona’ for your brand. Advance research will always be a key part of this. Who uses your product? What else do they like? What do they look like and what is their lifestyle? Where do they come from, and how do they spend their budget? Creating that ‘customer persona’ is key… you want a fixed template of what the person who uses your product looks like, to help you conceptualise your advertising better. You can, of course, also look to who is using your competitors to help you create this.

You should also be getting to know your own customers more personally. What matters to them, and what doesn’t? Do you engage with them through comments, posts and other digital platforms? Do you ‘plug in’ to their engagement with other platforms and people (known as ‘social listening’) to learn what they care about? Have you ever actually considered surveying your consumers?

It’s possible to build a very powerful, targeted idea of who needs your product most through these strategies.

How can Google Analytics help?

If you’re still not able to laser-focus in on your customer through other methods, or if you’re looking for some extra data, Google Analytics can help you get a better feel for your audience through their ‘audience’ data.

Analytics is simple to use and easy to set up, even if it seems a little overwhelming. Their ‘audience’ section provides invaluable data on who is clicking through to your website and what they ‘look’ like as a person. Their age, gender, location, other interests, used browsers and devices and much more is all recorded. You can also see how they got to your website, which social media platforms are most used, and other key data. In fact, Analytics newest feature will also help you refine and set up a targeted audience through the platform, too, helping you reach out to newer markets you may not have realised are interested in your product. It does this through data on the likes and interests of the people reaching out to you.

What do I do with this information?

Once you know your key audience, you’re perfectly placed to act. Make sure your tone, campaign efforts, style, and even the choice of images you use are in line with the people who consume your product. Reach out to them through common interests. In short, make sure your advertising efforts are targeted to appeal to your audience first and foremost.

Determining your audience correctly is a critical first step to any successful digital marketing, yet it can be a tricky and overwhelming part of the research you need. If you’re feeling lost at sea and not sure how to get your digital marketing shipshape, why not let the Zebra 360 Online Marketing team help you get to grips with the intricacies of your audience today?