By Sandy Sponaugle
Posted on October 24, 2018
Filed under: Economic Development, Marketing Collateral, Strategic Communication

Why understanding your target audience is so important

Why is understanding your target audience so important?

You might hear this marketing tip all the time… and you’ve definitely heard it from me 🙂

Understanding your target audience is critical because the goal is to relate to THEM.

Marketing is not just about singing the praises of your product or organization. It’s about connecting with your ideal customers, and inspiring them to take action – whether that’s signing up for your newsletter, engaging with you on social media, or buying a ticket to an event.

In order to resonate with them, you need to understand who your customer is and what will get their attention.

For example, from an EconDev perspective, if you want to connect with Generation Z students that have just graduated high school and want to start their own business, you need to be where they are – whether that’s a local coffee shop in the neighborhood or online.

To reach them online, go where they are hanging out. In the case of Gen Z, that would be a social media network like Snapchat or Instagram.

One of the features of Snapchat is the variety of filters available that they use to make sharing photos or videos more fun and entertaining. As an advertiser, you can create and implement a Snapchat Filter campaign with branded filters that show up in certain geolocations.

Or you could do an Instagram initiative campaign, where you find one up-and-coming entrepreneur that fits that Gen Z demographic. Interview them, figure out what they are doing that’s working for them, and see if they would want to be featured on your Instagram story.

By featuring them, they are also more likely to share that to all of their followers.

You can ask them questions like, “Why did you start your business here in [Your City]? How did you connect with the economic development office here in [Your City]? What have they done for you?” And it can snowball from there!

The key with both of these tactics is that you are going to where your target audience already is. You’re appealing to their interests – not your own!

On the other hand, if you were try to reach this audience on a platform like talk radio or through newspaper ads, you’re much less likely to get their attention. (How many 18-year-olds do you know who are listening to talk radio?)

When you understand your target market, you can meet them where they are, and create campaigns that resonate with what they are interested in.

And that gets you better results!

Til next time,
Sandy

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