Whether you are about to create a new video or a multi-channel campaign, there are few things as crucial to your success as defining your audience.
Is it a young millennial who loves travel Instagram accounts? (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself) Or is it perhaps an ecommerce business owner who is looking for a new hosting platform for their online store?
No matter who your audience is, there are key variables that you should keep in mind when communicating with them so that your message is heard - loud and clear.
We got you covered here with 3 tools you could use right away to: easily identify your audience from data you may already have, to define them as fictional characters created through ‘user personas’ (a very popular marketing and UX framework), and to further refine who they are by putting yourself in their shoes through empathy mapping.
1. Google Analytics
Let’s start with the hard data - uncovering the information we already have access to. Google Analytics (GA) is a great place to start.
Sidenote - If you are asking yourself what the fuzz is with Google Analytics, or you haven’t set it up on your site, stop whatever you are doing and do this instead.
In a nutshell, Google Analytics will provide you with one of the most transparent windows to peek into your audience. At least for those who are visiting you online. Limiting? Perhaps a touch, but let’s be honest nowadays your website is your brand’s home and presentation card, so this is not such a bad place to start.
To make it short and sweet, here is a video that will give you some insights into the kind of information you could look for through Google Analytics.
In summary, here are some key takeaways you could get from Google Analytics:
Age - how old are your visitors?
Gender - is there a particular gender distribution?
Location - where do they come from?
Interests - what drives them at a personal level?
Device - are they mac or pc users? Do they use mobile or desktop?
New vs returning (traffic) - what is the proportion of new vs. returning traffic? (This can help you identify customer loyalty)
Where did they come from? (traffic) - what websites or referring places are bringing you traffic? Are those platforms you could market in?
Emerging patterns start to tell a story of who is visiting your site. Take this information with a grain of salt if you are looking to talk to new customers. In that case, this information might be less practical, but can be beneficial in the long term to see how your efforts are rendering results.
If you are looking at defining a potential audience or customer from zero, I would suggest you use the Hubspot Persona Tool as a way to define who your potential audience is.
2. Hubspot Persona Tool
It is no secret that we’ve mentioned Hubspot in the blog many times - nothing to hide. We are huge fans, we use their platform, and we think their content is awesome.
So what is user / customer / buyer persona anyway? Well, a persona is a fictional character created to help advertisers, marketers or user-experience (UX) professionals identify a user or target of their campaign, product, video, app, service, etc.
Want to read more into it? Here is a Hubspot blog article that will give you more info into this tool and how to use it.
In summary, here are some key takeaways you could get from Personas:
Key characteristics of your prospective user/customer/buyer.
what is their job and their responsibilities?
What do they love/hate?
What are their pain points and challenges?
What tools do they use to do their job?
How do they like to communicate?
And so much more...
Below is an image of what your end product will look like once you use the Hubspot persona tool. Please don’t tell me that isn’t a work of art! We love personas because they create a framework that can be utilized multiple times, but they also create a pseudo ‘Northern star’ for you to follow in all your efforts.
3. Empathy mapping
Our third and final tool is the Empathy Mapping canvas. The reason we are including this one is because it will take you one step further than defining your audience, and put you in their shoes so that you can better understand their needs and wants by empathizing with them.
With empathy mapping you will be able to understand the thought process of your audience to a deeper degree as you ask yourself:
What do they need to DO?
What do they SEE?
What do they SAY?
What do they DO?
What do they HEAR?
What do they THINK and FEEL? (What are their PAINS and GAINS?)
By having a closer approximation to your audience's thoughts, pain points, hopes and dreams, you will be able to make your message more authentic and compelling.
Now that you’ve defined your audience, please make sure to put that information to use when developing your creative.
When your creative phase is done, don’t forget to us the platform specific tools that allow you to target those audiences like Facebook Audience Manager, Twitter Audience Insights, YouTube Campaigns, LinkedIn Ads, and so on.
Any of the tools above would help you better understand who your audience is in as little as 5-30 minutes, trust us, this is possibly the most important time you can dedicate to a project and the results will back it up.
Care to read more on video marketing and conversion strategy?