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How to define your target audience

In our recent article on how to grow your business with content marketing, we discussed the importance of defining your target audience before developing a content marketing strategy. Here we will take a more in depth look into the different methods you can use to define and understand your target audience. 

Look internally for insights

As a business you will have a solid understanding of who your target audience are, but there are teams and individuals within your organisation that you can look to for additional insights.

If you have a dedicated sales team, they are the first people you should speak to. As they are the individuals responsible for converting new business, they will understand who your target audience is, their pain points, and the solutions customers see in your product or offering. Your sales team may also have knowledge of where your target audience goes to consume content.

If you have account managers or customer service teams, look to them to discover what information your target audience requires. This could be anything from what questions they commonly ask that can help feed your FAQs, to product or service related information that could be used as the basis for guides or resources. 

What data do you already have?

A great source of audience data is Google Analytics (GA). GA can provide you with a repository of audience information, from where your target audience is based, to how they navigate the content on your website. GA can provide you with the following information:

  • How users are reaching your website – are they searching for you online, clicking onto your website from social media platforms, or are they referred to your website from another website?
  • What pages users land on – this will reflect what content users are searching for online
  • How users interact with your content – what pages do users visit on your website and how long do they spend on these pages?

When you start implementing your content marketing strategy you can set up goals in GA to measure how your content is performing. This is a great way of seeing what content leads a user to convert on your website. 

Who follows you on social media?

If you have social media profiles set up for your business, look to your followers for audience insights. You can use the data you already have on the people that follow you or like your page.

A great starting point for accessing this data is Facebook Audience Insights. Audience Insights provides you with detailed information about the people that like your page. This includes demographic data, such as the age, gender, and location of your target audience, as well as their interests and hobbies. These insights help you to better understand your audience, and can be used to attract similar audiences in the future. 

Social media is also a great platform for sourcing insights directly from your audience. For instance, you can engage with your audience using a poll on Instagram Stories to get instant feedback about a new product you’ve launched. 

Get insights from your existing audience

If you want to get insights about your audience, why not go directly to the source? If you want to know how to attract new customers, ask your existing customers what made them convert. 

By interviewing existing customers you can glean a variety of insights that will help inform your content marketing strategy, from what content your customers want to consume, to the platforms they go to to consume content. 

If you don’t have the option of interviewing your existing customers, you could look into market research options to gather information about your target markets or customers.

If you have any questions or comments about defining your target audience, you can contact us here, or tweet us at @WilsonCooke.

August 9th, 2019
Helena Taylor
Content and Social Lead