Boost Conversions, Start With Identifying Your Target Audience
Let’s play a game. Take 1 minute and write down your target audience(s). What are their characteristics? List buying behaviors, lifestyle habits. and primary pain points. Are you having trouble identifying your target audience? You’re in good company.
Small businesses can struggle to narrow their target audience the right way. For example, if the owner of a small eCommerce jewelry shop in Chico, California thought his audience was women, 18-25, lives in Chico, California, he has not done his homework.
It’s easy to assume that your town is a small enough audience to target, but it’s not.
Not only is this pretty bold to assume every breathing human in your community wants your product or service, but that targeting strategy also doesn’t work.
Whether you’re an eCommerce business or you own a brick and mortar shop, narrowing your target audience can improve your marketing efforts tremendously.
Narrowing Your Target Audience is the First Step to Successful Brand Marketing
Your true love customers are out there. If you want to attract them, you need to be extremely clear about who you are and how you can help them.
Then, you can find the customers that seem like they were born to buy your product. Where do we start? Narrow your target audience.
Proper target marketing helps you connect with the customers who are searching for your product or solution. This is a strategy called niche marketing.
Niche marketing is a liberating approach because you need to communicate your brand authentically in order to succeed.
Brands are most successful when they define and own their niche market. The broader they go, the more diluted their brand message becomes, and that’s bad for business.
If you’re unsure whether your brand’s target audience is too broad, look out for these signs it’s time to narrow your audience.
Identify Your Niche, Then Get Niche-er
In a recent interview with Marie Forleo, (yeah we watch her, what of it?) Marketing Genius Seth Godin said, “If you want to reach everyone, that means you are denying the people you’re serving their humanity.” Boom.
It’s frustrating to think you’re putting in all this work to only reach a small group, but that is exactly what powerful marketing accomplishes.
You can’t please everyone, only water can do that (and grilled cheese, and pizza, and Home Alone 1 & 2 … but now we’re getting off track). Pleasing everyone strips your brand of authenticity.
Authenticity is your honey pot. According to a recent survey by Cohn & Wolfe, nearly nine out of 10 customers are “willing to take action to reward a brand for its authenticity.”
If you have identified your niche but you’re still not seeing the conversions, it’s possible your niche isn’t niche enough.
Brands often underestimate just how specific their niche needs to be. A great way to test your niche-ness: count how many things your brand is attempting to do really, really well. If that number is above 3, then you haven’t found your niche.
Successful brands know who they are, how their different, and direct their focus on doing those 1-3 things extremely well. In fact, if you look at major brands, you can usually spot just ONE thing they do really well. Starbucks and their loyalty programs, Apple’s tease launch marketing, you get the idea.
Count how many things your brand is attempting to do really, really well. If that number is above 3, then you haven’t found your niche.
If your brand is focusing on doing everything really well (things like quick service, affordable, high quality materials, otherworldly customer service, free shipping, solid community outreach, hilarious jokes) then you lose sight of how you’re different.
Focus on a few things that would make your brand stand out. If you do those things better than all of your competitors, then your target audience will have an easier time recognizing your value.
Do Your Research
From workplace habits to number of kids, seeing your audience for who they are, not what you want them to be, will show you want your audience already wants.
If your audience is too broad, then it’s impossible to identify patterns and commonalities among them.
Be more efficient with your targeting by understanding as much as you can about your audience so you are directing your product to people who will see the most value in it.
Take advantage of analytics and surveys, request feedback from current customers, and dive into your data.
If you’re a brand new business, then starting off with a broader audience is OK, as long as you have done your market research and consistently refine your audience as you go.
As your business continues to grow and you receive feedback from customers and acquire market research, that audience is naturally going to need some refining. Use your research.
For example, let’s say you’re a subscription meal company with vegan and vegetarian options. You may start off with a general audience like: People in urban coastal cities the US who order takeout 3+ days per week. After a few months in business, use data analysis to refine your audience:
People in West Coast urban areas (Northern California, Portland, Seattle, and San Francisco), who order takeout 3-5 days a week, are between ages 18-35, work from home, own 1 pet, check their email first thing in the morning, and smoke socially.
An effective target audience outline will include the less quantifiable stuff like interests, beliefs, lifestyle habits, and values.
Small Audiences Shouldn’t Be Scary
Small audiences are not a red flag. It does not mean less conversions, in fact the exact opposite is true. It’s an indicator that you’ve improved your audience targeting.
While small audiences can make campaigns more expensive, effective targeting through niche audiences will result in more conversions because you’re actually marketing products or services that compliment your target audience’s lifestyle and values.
Be aware, there is such thing as a niche audience that’s too small, so don’t go overboard with the targeting. Audience personas like: People in the US who order Chinese takeout weekly, are 21 years old, work from home, take pottery classes in Midtown and have seen every Adam Sandler movie is closer to a dating app profile than a marketing persona.
Attract Your Niche Audience with Brand Strategy
Need help identifying your niche? Beer helps. Get in touch with our strategists and storytellers to see if we’re a good match for your brand.