Hello my friend,
So you have a business, huh?
Let me ask you this question today- who are “your people”? Who are you actively serving in your business?
Today we’re diving into one of my favorite topics as part of the Refining Your Brand Series (because it’s SO important!) …. your IDEAL AUDIENCE 🙌🏼
What’s your ideal audience, you may ask? Well, simply put… it’s your people. The people that live and breathe for the service or product you provide. You can likely picture these folks in your mind, but have you ever really broken them down in detail?
Until you know everything about them, and speak to them through your marketing efforts, you’re missing a major opportunity to get “your people” in your corner- the ones you have to do little marketing towards and more connecting with.
I’m going to take a gander that you started your business for a reason and saw a gap you can fill in your industry. You wanted to provide a solution, and likely you knew just who’d be interested in this sort of thing.
This general group of people is what we refer to in marketing as your target, or ideal, audience. It’s who needs just what you got.
See where I’m going with this? Okay, let’s dive a little deeper.
Last week, I walked you through defining your core values and crafting an impactful mission statement. Take a look back at these and think about the type of people that would identify most with what you wrote.
This is your ideal audience, my friend.
If you want to truly be successful and stand out in your industry, you must be crystal clear on who these folks are and what drives their motivations every day.
So how do we define your ideal audience? I asked my business coach Gina De Lucia for a hand in this...
Think of your ideal audience as a collective group of your ideal clients aka “your people”. You’ll want to break this down by trying to define a particular type of person, typically one that shares a lot of the same interests and beliefs as you. Once you dig below the surface of what resonates with your ideal client, you can use that information to be more deliberate with your words and message so that your marketing efforts engage and inspire the people that will get the most value from the services you’re offering.
Try brainstorming with these categories and questions in mind:
What is their age, gender, and occupation?
Goals + Values:
What are their goals, values, and desires?
Are they aligned with yours (this ensures you’re working with the RIGHT people for YOU)?
Internal and External Factors (the good stuff):
What are their biggest struggles / pain points?
What do they feel like before working with you?
What do they feel like after working with you?
What are their interests?
Where do they hang out online or in person (events, workshops, etc)?
What podcasts do they listen to?
So… why does this all matter?
In terms of your brand, it’s important to create a visual brand with a business’s ideal audience in mind. This goes for everything from your website, your brand design identity, and your brand photography. All of those elements must be created to appeal to your ideal audience.
Whenever I begin a branding project, I dive into a business’s ideal audience and pin-point characteristics, values and traits that would cause an emotional response. I then craft a design strategy that aims to prompt that emotional response with the brand's ideal audience.
In branding, its vital to intentionally strategize your brand with your people (& not your own personal preference) in mind so that they will always resonate with what you put out there.
As it relates to your every day marketing, its important to know who your ideal audience is so that you can speak directly to them online. We as small business owners are blessed to be able to use platforms like Instagram and Facebook to interact daily with your audience- use this free opportunity to use language that they’ll identify with and remember long-after the conversation has ended.
You may feel a little “icky” using words like targeting in your marketing, and that’s totally fine. (Hence, why I say "ideal" audience and not target audience!) Understand that this exercise’s goal is to help you be a better storyteller by knowing who your people are and how you can better share your brand's story with them.
You should feel proud that you’re, in essence, helping these folks by understanding their motivations, goals and values. After you sit down and get clear on just who they are, you'll be able to see clearly why they need your business in their life and be able to come from a place of service in your marketing efforts.
Go boldly forward with your brand and shout what you got from the rooftops- but don't do it into the abyss. Find a rooftop your ideal audience might be hangin' out at, and shout it to them from there!
While you work through refining your brand in this series, it’s totally normal to look at your existing brand and feel a bit lost. If you’d like some guidance on getting on the right track with a cohesive & impactful brand, feel free to get in touch with me!
For more guidance on honing your business, go check out Gina's services- I can't recommend her enough!