How to Pinpoint Your Target Audience
Pinpointing your target audience and your target markets takes a lot of work and trial and error testing, so why create an article about how to pinpoint a target audience? Do we know secrets that hurry the process along? What we know is that targeting doesn’t have to be an uphill battle.
As you will learn, there are times when even the smallest of marketing investments can yield a full and broad picture of your target audience. Plus, you will learn that pinpointing a target audience is not about buying expensive services, luck, or even about persistence; it is about knowing what you have found and knowing when you have got lucky.
Use Affiliate Advertising to Find Your Target Audience
Nobody is saying that online PPC/PPA advertising is the key to success, but part of your marketing budget should be dedicated towards it so that you may learn about your target audience. You know how to find your target audience the organic way where you allow people to find you, and the ones that convert are the ones you study. However, getting people to come to you organically is difficult, and the tests you may run are a little limited.
Post PPC ads and you have the advantage of knowing things about your website visitors “Before” they arrive at your website. Here is a great example of organic learning vs affiliate advertising learning.
Example – Organic Web Traffic
Your store in Delaware draws traffic from all over the country. You learn that 60% of your traffic is from Delaware and 40% is not. Only 5% buy your primary product, and only half of that number are from Delaware. What you learn is that the conversion rate of your nationwide customers is higher.
Example – Affiliate Web Traffic
You try three ads and each is restricted to display in Delaware only. As a result, 100% of your traffic comes from Delaware. One advertisement outperforms the others by a 2:1 ratio. What you have learned this time is why people from Delaware buy, and which advertisements appeal to them the most. That is the sort of target marketing that enables you to pinpoint your target audience.
Buying Contacts and Target Market Information
In college, students are taught that buying another company’s customer list is possibly the most efficient way to pinpoint a target audience. The trouble is that prior to the club card/points card world, few companies were willing to give up their information.
Nowadays, the sale of data is such big business that there are still countries with trade embargoes on them because they refuse to sign up to global data-privacy laws. Yet, as we still know from club card/points card schemes, the collection and sale of customer information is quite legal if the customer agrees (that is what you agree to when you sign up for loyalty cards, points cards, etc.).
Learning how to find your target market is easier when you buy contacts and target market information because you get a head start. For example, how could a new business know that people in a local area look at jewelry websites the most at 11am, and yet people buying jewelry online tend to do it closer to 10pm.
It would take years of testing to reach those conclusions alone, and yet through the purchase of customer information, a small company is able to learn this information in advance.
Knowing When You Have Got Lucky
A wholesaler for pewter jewelry was struggling, so he tried his hand at direct retail. Most of his pieces sold in very small numbers. For example, he sold six of his donkey cuff links to a donkey sanctuary and several St Christopher medals to other people. Then, after posting new photos of his stock, the sale of his angel ballerina necklace skyrocketed.
The wholesaler was pleased but worked hard to find out why he got so lucky. He did everything he could to find out why this type of necklace was selling so well. His online polls, Facebook polls, and even the conversations with customers in person and on Reddit seemed to show that his picture of that particular necklace was especially astounding.
This didn’t tell him much about the people buying his necklaces, so he dug a little deeper. He discovered that:
- The picture was a big selling point (thanks to the aforementioned research)
- Twitter share tracking showed that the picture was shared a lot by girls aged around 14 years old
- The demographic information from his web analytic suggested most of his necklace traffic came from Facebook and Twitter
- Cookie tracking and checkout information showed him that after-school hours were his most popular
- He simplified the website setup process, but also added questions such as the user’s age and other demographic information
This information gave him far more detail than simple sales and traffic monitoring could not, giving him valuable data about his target audience
Using the Information That Has Been Gathered
Continuing with the example, we see how the wholesaler pinpointed his target audience.
The wholesaler took that information and moved his affiliate advertising over and started posting necklace adverts on Twitter and Facebook. He also added a “Share This Purchase” button to his purchase-email confirmation, so that buyers could brag to their friends about what they bought. Since he also tracked the button, he was then able to learn more about his buyers.
Specifically, he learned that young girls liked posting a picture of what they bought because others would compliment them on it. He also learned that the price at which he set his necklace was another selling point because younger people often cannot afford silver or white gold, but can easily afford pewter.
The Conclusion is That You Have More Tools at Your Disposal Than You Think
If you have learned anything from the wholesaler-turned-retailer target audience example, it is that there are many ways of gathering information about your target audience. Don’t forget that you control many of the information-gathering tools.
For example, why not put a short survey at the end of each website sign up, or why not add tracked buttons onto your confirmation emails? The wholesaler in the example was used to selling business-to-business but used all the tools at his disposal to give himself a head start when it comes to retail selling. Are you not able to do the same?