Let’s imagine that a company came up with a great product that is sure to blow up the market, and invested money in production and promotion. But the product does not become as popular as expected – money and efforts have been wasted.
Why did this happen? There are many variants: an unfortunate timing, a change in legislation, an unexpected crisis. But more often the reason for failure is simple – the wrong definition of the target audience.
Understanding the target audience does not guarantee that the product will be successful and bring profit. But it increases the chances that the product will meet the needs of people and they will buy it.
Basics of the Target Audience
The target audience is the people interested in the product and ready to buy it. There are situations when it seems that there is no need to study the target audience because everyone needs the product. But it only seems that way: every business needs to study its target audience to understand the goals of the potential customer and offer them a solution with your product.
If a business tries to make a product for everyone at once, it risks not making it for anyone: it will spend a lot of money and time, but no one will be interested in it.
How Understanding the Target Audience Helps a Business
Knowing your target audience and their needs helps a business answer these questions.
Where to start and how to further develop the product. When a business understands what is important to its target audience, it can decide which features the product needs first, because they are the reason the customer will buy it.
How much the product should cost. Understanding the characteristics of your audience helps you form the right price for your product – one that won’t scare away potential customers and at the same time won’t drive your business into deficit.
Whether there is demand for the product or whether it needs to be created. If the business knows who it sells the product to, it becomes clear what the task is: to meet the existing demand for a product that the customer understands, or to first explain to the potential customer what the product will be useful for.
Which advertising channels and platforms to test first. When the target audience is known, it is easier to formulate a hypothesis about the order in which to test advertising platforms. This is important because in business, budgets are always limited.
What and how to tell about the product. Understanding the target audience helps to choose the packaging, advertising creativity, and the tone of voice with the buyer.
Main Characteristics of Target Audience
In order to study and understand your potential customer in detail, understand these characteristics:
- Geographical characteristics can affect not only the setting of advertising.
- Socio-demographic characteristics – education, income, gender, marital status, children and others. They can affect the communication, product packaging and even its essence. For example, sports betting odds in Canada should be advertised to the audience with high income but which has enough time for this hobby (probably, without children).
- Psychographic characteristics – social group to which the buyer belongs, personal qualities of the person, values, dreams and fears, hobbies.
- Behavioral characteristics – analysis of human behavior when he makes a decision to buy and makes a purchase.
How and Why to Segment the Target Audience
The same product can be bought by different customers. For example, online Spanish courses can be taken by young professionals who want to get high and go to work abroad, or by elderly people who are bored. The same product – online Spanish courses – should be sold to these customers in different ways.
The target audience will be divided into several parts, each of which will be approached differently. Segmentation helps businesses increase sales more effectively.
The main secret of segmentation is to divide the audience into segments that will add up to a single image of a potential customer. Fragmentation of the target audience into too small segments can be detrimental: it will be unclear to whom and what to offer.