Defining your target audience is crucial when selling a product or service. It allows you to refine your marketing strategy and minimize the chances of a failed marketing campaign. After all, an unidentified target audience makes it complicated to know who to market your offerings.

In this guide, you’ll learn what a target audience is and how to identify your own below.

What Is a Target Audience?

Target audiences are groups of people you can target with your marketing and advertising campaigns. Essentially, targeting a specific group of consumers helps to generate more sales.

That’s because a target audience will represent consumers likely to purchase a certain product or service.

For example, it could be a working mom between the ages of 25 and 35, living in New York, interested in eating healthy — and having a monthly income between $2,000 and $3,000.

Marketers define their target audience by using data to dig deeper into their potential customers, including:

  • Personal characteristics.
  • Lifestyle choices and interests.
  • Where they spend the most time online.
  • Types of content they prefer to consume.

In turn, they create a buyer persona to match the personalities of people they would find interested in the product or service.

How To Identify Your Target Audiences

1. Segment Your Audience

The first step to identifying a target audience is segmenting each potential buyer group. For instance, if they are an existing customer, you can look at their purchase history to segment them based on the information.

You could also segment your audience based on their demographics and psychographics. Business map software makes it easy to discover your audiences and segment them based on the data it provides.

2. Conduct Market Research

Before you create a unique offering, conduct market research to learn what’s already in your industry.

This method gives you a clearer picture of the number of competitors you have and the strongest competition. It also gives you valuable insight into which gaps are in the market. In addition, it helps you discover your unique selling proposition.

3. Analyze Your Competitors

It’s important to assess your competitors to find out what they’re doing successfully and vice versa. You can also better understand who they’re targeting and their customer’s pain points.

Small businesses should also understand what their competitors are missing from their marketing efforts. That way, you can use marketing messages focusing on the existing gap.

Consider researching their social media profiles and note the content they share and if they use influencers to raise awareness. This research helps determine which social media networks to use and what content to publish.

4. Consult Customer Data

The next step is to check for patterns or trends in your customer data. If you have an e-commerce store, consider taking note of customers’ addresses.

With a little research, you may discover a majority of where your sales are coming from by looking at product shipments.

A CRM (customer relationship management) tool can provide invaluable insights. It can help you analyze trends and create reports.

5. Gather Your Insights

All the insights you’ve gained from your research and analysis can go together and should give you ideas for different target audiences. Consider summarizing each audience in a persona.

With each customer persona, you can find ways to market your offerings to them. Keep testing your results to see which ad campaigns work best for your audiences. You can also start reaching out to influencers and begin running a marketing campaign.

If you have collected email addresses, you can consider sending promos to see who takes advantage of your offers.

6. Maintain Your Curiosity

Always a good idea to keep getting to know your customers. Consumer behaviors change over time, and so does your industry. Keep checking on your competitors and see if they’re targeting the same audience. You can use competitor analysis to see what they’re doing that you can mimic.

Additionally, if they launch new products or services, it helps to find out if they’ve created a new persona that you may consider. The key takeaway is never to lose sight of your customers.

Knowing Your Target Audiences Can Help You Succeed

Small businesses may not find the results they’re looking for if they aren’t sure about their target audience. That’s why it takes them to dive deep into their research. By focusing on your target audiences, you’ll find more success because these groups of consumers are ready to see what you have to offer.

As your business grows, you’ll have even more customers to reach. Take note that the better you understand your customers, the more likely you are to attract them and convert more sales.