What is a target audience or an ideal customer? Why do they matter?
There is hardly a brand that is selling to absolutely everyone. Every product has a specific demographic that is best suits or appeals to. Your target audience is that demographic. They are the people who are naturally most interested in what your brand offers, and therefore most likely to become customers. Your ideal client is even more specific than that. They are a repeat customer who recommends your brand to others.
Identifying an ideal customer and target audience is often met with apprehension by many business owners. They are afraid they are cutting out potential customers by concentrating on only specific ones. They couldn't be more wrong though. By not cutting out the people who aren't really interested in what your brand offers, you are actually failing to attract the people who are interested. The internet is noisy, if you're talking to everyone, then you're actually talking to no one.
Identifying an ideal customer will not only save you money, but it will grow your revenue. That usually gets everyone's attention. It is true. Why would you pay for a marketing campaign that won't be effective? When you aren't marketing to an ideal customer that's exactly what you're doing. Plus marketing to an ideal customer will not only be more cost effective and successful, but it will gain you more customers, which is they point in the first place right?
When you create a marketing strategy that caters to the exact perfect customer for your brand, you attract that customer and those that fall into the same category. Think about the best customer your business has, wouldn't it be great if most of your customers were just like them? In pursuing that particular customer you will naturally pick up similar customers along the way without wasting time and precious resources on customers your business doesn't want or won't appeal to in the first place.
How do you identify an ideal customer though? Well I mentioned thinking about your best customer, who was that? Likely a repeat customer that recommends your brand to others. Now do you have more than one of those? Look at what they have in common, like age, martial status, location, gender, occupation, income, likes & dislikes, beliefs, community participation, children, grandchildren. No detail is too small and the details don't have to have anything to do with your business, they just need to be true for your best customers.
Once you have those details, create a persona or ideal client outline. Even name it. Write down every detail about this person. Make that person the focus of everything your brand does. What questions does this person have? What problems? That's where the gold is. When you can identify the troubles that plague your ideal customer, you know how to get their attention, especially where those troubles can be eased by what your brand offers.
If identifying your ideal customer and target audience seems too daunting, let me help you with it. I offer social media strategy creation as part of my social media packages or as a stand alone, one time service. Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.