Business Pivoting Series Part 3: How to connect with specific audiences within your target market

3 weeks ago | by

BY SHANE O’BRIEN. 5 MINUTE READ

We have previously discussed how your target audiences are the specific group/s of people within a target market. These individuals are most likely to resonate with particular marketing messages related to your products or services.

To connect with your target audience, we must first learn how to communicate with them, which will require a healthy dose of empathy. This begins by uncovering their pain points and conducting research to carefully understand who they are, what they need, and when they need it. Remember, as marketing guru Orvel Ray Wilson said: “Customers buy for their reasons, not yours.

 

By establishing well-defined target audiences, every detail of a marketing campaign can be perfectly tailored to appeal to your audience’s interests, emotions, and world views. Plus, understanding who you’re speaking to and crafting relevant messaging to reach them could quickly equate to higher conversion rates, and in turn, build a more powerful brand.

 

So how the heck do we do this?

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Step 1: Tools we use at Coast to define a target audience and understand their needs.

Tools of the Trade # 1: Customer Empathy Map

A Customer Empathy Map is a useful tool we use when developing our clients marketing strategies and helps businesses better understand their customers. This particular tool allows marketers to create a deep, shared understanding and empathy of their customer’s experience, which is very useful when creating new and improved products/services.

It asks:

  • Who are we empathising with?
  • What do they need to do?
  • What do they see?
  • What do they say?
  • What do they do?
  • What do they hear?
  • What do they think and feel?

Note: The 7th sector, ‘think and feel’ is broken down into two further parts. Pains and gains. From these pains and gains, we can then create products and services that address them!

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Tools of the Trade # 2: Customer Persona

Customer personas (sometimes referred to as marketing or buyer personas) are fictional, generalised visual representations of your ideal customers. Personas help manifest the ideal customer we’re trying to attract and act as the catalyst for relating with our customers as actual humans. Buyer personas are often referenced when creating content, developing a new product, sales processes, and really anything that relates to customer acquisition and retention.

 

Here’s an example of one we have created for a client:

Step 2: Now, we know who we are talking to; it’s time to plan out how we will engage them.

Tools of the Trade # 3: The ‘Marketing Mix’

Many assume that casting a wide net is the best way to haul in more fish. But the most successful fishermen plan ahead, knowing what type of fish they wish to catch and making nets with that specific size of fish in mind. They also know exactly where to find these fish and when to cast their nets strategically.

 

This is why targeted ads are almost twice as effective as those that are non-targeted. To create targeted advertising content, consider establishing a ‘marketing mix’ that you can use to catch your perfect fish!

 

The term ‘marketing mix’ is a tried and tested, core marketing strategy model for businesses, historically centered around what we call the 4 Ps – product, price, place, and promotion. The marketing mix has been defined as the set of marketing tools that a business should use to pursue its marketing objectives within its target market.

  • Product – What your business offers, so it satisfies its customers
  • Price – The amount the customer pays for a product
  • Place – (Distribution) involves getting the product to the customer
  • Promotion – The way a customer is informed about a product, how they first see the product

Takeaways to help connect with specific audiences within a target market

  • Deep dive. Discovering the appropriate target market(s) and determining the target audience is one of the essential activities in marketing.
  • Understand and empathise. By clearly defining your target markets and target audiences will help ensure the sustainability of your business. Who does your business service, and why would these people be interested in what you have to say?
  • Get specific. The biggest mistake it’s possible to make in targeting is trying to reach everyone and end up appealing to nobody. Most would have heard of the ‘scattergun approach,’ which never ends well and causes a massive frustration. It’s like trying to serve a single dish to a dinner party of 12 strangers.
  • Get proactive. Rather than guess whether consumers will love your new product or service, consider connecting with your target market to align it with what they are struggling with or what they need. By engaging and making them a part of the process, you create more than just customers. You establish raving fans and brand ambassadors.

Are you reevaluating the key benefits that your business provides to consumers? Contact Coast today to find out how we can help you do so.

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Business Pivoting Series Part 2: How to define and engage a target market that your business can focus on to thrive

4 weeks ago | by

BY SHANE O’BRIEN. 3 MINUTE READ

As mentioned in our last post, target markets are usually combinations of people with similar problems your product or service may solve and are most likely to purchase them. They are united by some common characteristics, like demographics and behaviours, and are among the essential components to any marketing strategy.

“There is only one winning strategy. It is to carefully define the target market and direct a superior offering to that target market.”

– Philip Kotler

By defining a specific, well-defined group of people, or target market, you will be able to develop products, services, and marketing campaigns. This will allow your business to cut through the noise. 

 

Let’s discuss how to do this in two parts.

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Part 1: Defining a target market in 6 steps

Begin by asking yourself some simple questions. These can include:

  • Step 1 – What’s the problem? Assess what problem your products or services solve. Think about the reasons why your product or service exists. Is it sleep-related issues, lack of healthy food choices, changing environments, etc. Once you know the problem, you’re on the way to defining a target market.
  • Step 2 – Who’s impacted by the problem? List the groups of people that have the problem you can solve. Go into as much detail as possible. How much do they earn? Where do they live? What hobbies do they have? Try to segment or categorise the types of customers based on location, budget, or needs.
  • Step 3 – Who has the most to lose or gain? Analyse the groups that you’ve defined and ask yourself who has the most to lose by not utilising your products or service/s. Who has the most to gain from your product or service/s? Perhaps also align these lists with particular features about your products or services that provide unique benefits.
  • Step 4 – Suss out the competition. It’s important to know who else is trying to solve similar problems so you can uniquely position your business. By doing a few quick Google searches or social media stalking (particularly on Facebook), you should be able to identify this competition. Keyword searches related to your industry will deliver instant results concerning similar businesses. Browse their website’s “About Us” and “Services” pages. It is also essential to identify the focus of your competition’s target market. Who are their current customers or clients? What gap within the market are they not servicing? Perhaps there’s something that they have overlooked!
  • Step 5 – Evaluate the options. By now, you’ve most likely identified a lot of potential target markets. It’s now time to evaluate these against your vision, mission and values  (aka your ‘true north’ or Brand Strategy).
  • Step 6 – Choose a winner, Baby! Once you have satisfactorily found a niche for your product, actually test this against your target market/s. Allow people to interact with your product or service – not just theoretically but also by putting yourself out there and making some new connections. 

Part 2: Ensuring your target market will be engaged

Before you spend time creating content to promote your next offering, it is crucial to ensure your target market will resonate with what you have to say.

Start by doing your research!

Similar to some of the activities seen in our 6-step process to defining a market, market research goes deeper is the process of collecting data about a market, service or product. It’s used to analyse the current situation and pave the way for a product launch or increased sales. By regularly conducting market research, your offering will continuously improve.

Most of us understand market research as a process that uncovers consumer habits and demands, plus the industry’s economic shape and the competitors’ state of affairs. However, its primary purpose is to unpack a market opportunity for a specific business. 

In a world crowded with so much competition, hardly any concept or rebranding ideas will ever succeed without prior market research. A healthy dose of regular market research will enable your business to evolve and provide constant value to those connected to it.

Activities within aspects of your market research are usually bespoke and based on your own goals and objectives.

If you think you need a bit more advice to break into a market, or define your marketing strategy, ask us how Coast can help you.

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Business Pivoting Series Part 1: The difference between target markets and audiences

1 month ago | by

BY SHANE O’BRIEN. 1 MINUTE READ

While we know that target markets and target audiences are similar, there are a few key differences between them.

We would explain a target market as a clearly defined segment of customers that your products and services will appeal to. 

A target audience is a little narrower and makes up the people you expect actually will purchase the product or service. These are people your business intends to respond to specific marketing or advertising efforts.

Diving a little deeper will explain the key differences.

A target market will impact many of the decisions your small business is going to make. For example, products or services are developed to meet the needs and desires of the target market. Pricing determinations are then created off the back of an analysis of your target market. Finally, marketing and sales strategies are structured around the target markets’ purchasing behaviors.

However, a target audience impacts decisions related to specific marketing messages. This is where segmented messaging will come in to play, especially if you have multiple groups of customers. 

For this reason, target markets are usually combinations of people with similar problems your product or service may solve. In contrast, target audiences may be a specific end-user of the product or service.

Here’s an example of a target market vs. target audience: 

Target market: single women in Coffs Harbour, under the age of 40, with no dependents, work full-time with a disposable income, and love supporting local brands.
Target audience: These women also love international travel and often shop for quality, sustainable brands to wear while travelling. They also love shopping with friends, but are time-poor and generally miss out on the in-store bargains, as they are too busy at work and live out of town. Instead, they shop from local online stores that ship directly to their door and donate a percentage of the sale to a social cause! They have a medium-high tech proficiency and have even set-up their own Afterpay account to make future purchases so they can shop more often without feeling like they’re spending too much in one hit!

Coast are experts at providing our clients with ways to connect their products and services to clients, customers and fans. Please get in touch to find out how we can help you achieve this.