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The Social Guild is a training, certification, and membership community for professional Social Media Managers.
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Why You Need To Know Your Audience Before You Start Marketing To Them

Three men on laptop computers

How well do you know your audience? (Image: Flickr)

Marketers everywhere often talk about the importance of knowing your audience. Why is that?

Quite simply, if you’re going to be selling something to someone, the more you know about them, the more likely you are to get your marketing message right.

In other words, you can waste a lot of time and money creating marketing assets, only to discover later that they don’t actually connect with the people you’ve identified as your target audience.

There are a variety of tools you can use to connect with your followers, so there’s simply no excuse not to.

Here are some additional thoughts on why you need to know your audience before you start marketing to them.

You Will Sell More If You Know Your Audience

If you have a product or a service to sell, then you will definitely sell more if you have a solid understanding of your target customer.

You may think you have a great idea, but you can’t assume your audience thinks the same. You’ll have a hard time persuading others if you haven’t taken the time to identify how they think and talk, what their pressing concerns and problems are, and how to solve them.

What many marketers do is sell the features of their offerings instead of the benefits. For example, if they’re selling a guitar, they’ll talk about the strings, the tuning pegs, the wood the guitar is made out of, the pickups it comes equipped with, and so on.

Although features may be important to the buyer, they are more interested in learning about how the product is going to solve their problem. For instance, maybe the guitar doesn’t fall out of tune. Maybe the strings break less often. Maybe the pickups are capable of producing sounds that other guitars simply aren’t able to.

When you know what problems your prospects are trying to solve, you know exactly what offerings to create. When you don’t know, you’re just shooting in the dark.

You Will Connect More If Your Know Your Audience

Woman using smartphone

Knowing your audience is the first step to connecting with them. (Image: Flickr)

This idea has already been hinted at throughout this post. If you can speak your audience’s language, you will do a better job of connecting with them.

On the surface, it may seem as though this exercise serves no purpose. But the reality is that creating this connection is essential to achieving every goal you have in mind.

Whether you want to create a bigger social following, gain more blog, podcast or email subscribers, generate more leads, or sell more products, you can draw your target follower or customer to you like a magnet when you use the exact words and phrases that they use.

You can survey your audience, email them, get on the phone with them, or even have one-on-one conversations with them. Patterns will emerge, and as you identify those, you’ll be more tuned to the exact concerns and thoughts your target audience members already have.

Your Marketing Will Be More Effective If Your Know Your Audience

Many eager entrepreneurs go out and create new products, services and businesses without actually thinking about what people want and how to reach them. Instead of working backwards, they start with an idea that they then have to try to validate. Instead of working smart, they just work hard.

This approach can work. But odds are you will be far more successful in less time if you do your homework before trying to determine the viability of your venture and having to pivot later.

If you’ve talked to your prospects, then you know what’s on their mind. You can find ways of taking heir thoughts and concerns and expressing them in your copy and marketing material. This will make it obvious to them that you’re the right choice for them.

Nobody wants to waste time and money on producing assets that don’t have a payoff. You’ll waste fewer resources if you commit to getting to know your audience first.

Final Thoughts

Researching your audience isn’t necessarily easy. It takes time, it takes effort, and it doesn’t always have any immediate rewards.

But your marketing will invariably be far more effective when you take the time to do your homework and figure out who your prospects are. In the long run, you will be better positioned to achieve your goals too.

By the way, do you need help with your social media strategy? Then don’t delay – get in touch with us so we can start assisting you.