Identifying Target Audiences with Product Maps
(AKA "Who the f*** are you talking to?")
You can't just go throwing advertising out there, all willy-nilly. That's like a blind cowboy shooting off rounds from his double pistols and yelling "YIPPY KAYAY, MOTHER FUCKER!", hoping that he hits the bandit that he's aiming for before someone else shoots him. They're probably not wearing a blindfold.
Just in case you didn't get this analogy, the point is you have to know what you're aiming at before you pull the trigger, or you'll run out of bullets and have nothing left to fire. And then, you die! Because one of your competitors knows what they're doing and has shot the target before you.
I'm not saying that you should literally shoot your clients (I have to throw that disclaimer in there. You know... just in case). What I'm saying is that you have to target and identify who you are trying to communicate with.
Understanding the adoption of your brand by an audience is an essential starting point in any marketing strategy. Of course, reviewing how competitors and intermediaries like publishers and comparison sites are using branding is important too, as part of situation analysis, but your ability to connect with your unique target market is what is going to determine the success of your marketing campaign.
Remember that you will get clients that do not fit into your standard target, but the key in marketing is to connect with your niche.
For example: My main target is small business owners and entrepreneurs, but I occasionally attract clients like marketers, wanting to stay up to date with the latest trends, and those in other professions that wish to further their knowledge.
I suggest making a product map to identify your target audience and how to connect with them. Product maps can be fun to make and great to have as reference. This is what our product map looks like with the 3 main target customers:
If your audience has a particular set of problems or issues that are clear from the content gap research that your product or service can address, then you’ll want to focus there.
Maybe there are immediately clear opportunities to help your product or service become more buyable, assuming your current content does not meet those needs already?
Perhaps you have content, but in the wrong media format?
Maybe it’s not findable on the site or just isn’t resonating with your audience at all in communications terms?
Social media platforms are the perfect means to give your existing content the push it may need.