The most important contributing factor to perform well in sales is knowing your audience. If you know your audience well, you’ll know how to seek them out, what kind of content they’re most receptive to, and how to build a loyal demographic. Tapping into the mind of your optimum consumer is so much easier than you would imagine – once you’ve identified exactly who they are.
Often, the audience that actually spends with your brand is a far cry from the audience that you imagined when you first coined your brand or campaign. It can be tricky to let go of the demographic that you initially associated with your company, but ensuring that you’re targeting the group of people who can truly help your business to grow is the difference between treading water or making tracks as a brand.
At One Agency, we invest heavily in seeking out the most ideal audiences for our clients, utilising a variety of research methods. A few of our favourites are listed below.
Mosaic profiling is the most cumulative method of data gathering that we use. By referring to a bank of data collected via personally identifiable information such as credit scores, spending habits, housing status and occupation – even specific traits like where people holiday and how often, and what newspapers or magazines they choose to read, we’re able to categorise raw data to identify specific profiles. There are 15 personality categories labelled A-O with around 4 subcategories within each section, so the next step is to work out where in the UK has the highest concentration of the top five profiles for your brief, and equally to disregard areas with a low concentration of your ideal audiences.
Furthermore, mosaic profiling allows us to work out not only who your audience are and where they are but also how they communicate, and which form of advertisement they’re most receptive to. This means that we are then able to put together a targeted campaign that is certain to be seen by the optimum audience, generating the highest possible ROI.
Probably the easiest tool to use, social media allows us to manipulate data like age, location, marital statistics, occupation and interests in order to build personas who would be interested in your brand. Though anyone with a public page can access the analytical side of platforms like Facebook and Instagram that are so great for proving useful analytics, it’s really important to know how the platform works and how to test the reliability of the data that you’re gathering.
For example, when you’re looking for your audience’s location based on their interests, or any other individual factor, Facebook is likely to tell you that you’ll find it in London. Don’t make the mistake of putting together a targeted campaign that focuses on London just because more people have their Facebook location set to London than anywhere else in the UK.
The best part of social media is how it enables you to communicate with your audience. Instead of gathering data that may not be current enough for your brand, you can actually ask your audience questions through polls, generating raw data and building on your relationship with your existing customers as you do.
More information about social advertising here.
Pen portraits are essentially just fictitious characters, made up of a wealth of traits that belong to your customer. They allow us to both gain a more well-rounded understanding of the person behind the statistics who actually visits your website/shop, or interacts with your campaign.
They also allow us to speak directly to a person when creating advertisements on any format – which is a known factor in making success stories out of campaigns.
The more creative aspect of researching your marketplace, pen profiles allow us to utilise research to ask questions like; what might your customer be called? What personality traits might they embody – are they ambitious, family orientated, or brand obsessed? Are they a millennial, a baby boomer or a Gen-Z? What are their needs? What do they love, what do they hate?
By building a bank of information about your consumer, we can come up with a series of personas who make up your audience – and we can work out how to serve their needs through the branded message that comes across in every aspect of your branding, through to your website, social media and OOH campaigns.
Once we know everything there is to know about the person we’re trying to speak to with our brand, we have the benefit of knowing exactly what they’ll most accept and benefit from in terms of the content that they receive.
The Office for National Statistics provides a wealth of information that can be enormously useful when it comes to identifying your audience and how they behave. Utilising national statistics is the best way to generate really reliable data about your audience, without any room for interpretation or digital mishaps.
A lot of the data out there can be treacherous and long, but investing the time to trudge through the spreadsheets for that one or two lines of golden information is a great starting point for finding out about things like geographical personalities, national income rates, and national health factors.
The most important thing to remember is that you can’t just rely on one method of research to determine everything there is to know about your audience. Really reliable information about your demographic comes from a period of time devoted to gathering results from all of these methods and more. A truly effective customer knowledge bank is regularly built upon as the market changes along with social trends and national income levels. We’re absolute geeks about this kind of thing, and there’s nothing we love more than a fresh research project, so give us a shout if you need a hand finding out who’s listening.
Words: Amy Cully Steele