Hang Out With Your Target Audience

Hang Out With Your Target Audience

Marketing a business to a large and diverse audience may sound like a good idea, but most companies learn quickly that it’s better to aim for one specific demographic and then really focus time, effort, and advertising money on that group. What isn’t often talked about, however, is that one of the best ways to get to know your target audience isn’t just by using Google Analytics or some other type of software. For many, it pays off to do things the old fashioned way – get out there and physically spend your free time around your target audience.

Think like your audience

Being among them helps you think like your audience because you’re in their environment. First, you need to figure out where your audience spends most of their time. This in itself is a good way to help you get to know them better. If you don’t know where they hang out, do the research and figure out where they’re eating, drinking, and spending their free time relaxing. Once you figure this out, go there often and immerse yourself in the environment.

Observe your audience, listen to what they’re saying, and try to elicit feedback about whatever market your business is in. You could analyse character traits such as: personality types, attitudes, values, interests/hobbies, lifestyles, and behaviours. Then decide how you can use this feedback and newfound knowledge to better reach your target audience and to better develop your product(s) to meet their needs.

Surround yourself with potential clients

What better way to market your business and your products than to actually, physically, spend time with the people who could potentially be your consumers? It all goes back to a sense of community. Communities, both literal and online, can be incredibly supportive, so demonstrate that you are invested in the community. Why should they support you and your business? Why should they network with you and possibly become a client? What value can you add to their world?

Spur new ideas

Listen to your audience, and ask them for feedback. Hidden somewhere in that conversation there might be an idea that would never have occurred to you unless you made the effort to engage in a dialogue with someone who is interested in your product. Or perhaps, disguised as a problem or a complaint, is a brand new idea for a product or a marketing strategy.

Be brave and step out from behind your website, leave the online surveys and comment threads behind, and get out there and hang with your target audience. It may be a pain to spend Saturday night at Bingo, or every Tuesday and Thursday at some boring bar with expensive drinks and bad music, but in the long run your business will thank you for it.

Are you “hanging out” with your potential customers?

Adapted from an article by Scott Langdon, entrepreneur.com

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