There’s a lot of talk going around about finding your target audience, your tribe, your people. But what does it mean exactly?
To put it simply, your target audience is the people you want to visit your website. Not only that, but the people you want sticking around, reading your content and buying your products.
You might be thinking, “but what if my target audience is everyone? I just want traffic to my site. I don’t care who it is.”
You Can’t Serve Everyone Well
The bad news is that a lot of online businesses tank in the first six months due largely to this kind of thinking.
Narrowing down your target audience means portraying yourself as an expert to a particular demographic. Relating to them in a way that lets them know if they stick around, they will be enriched by what you have to say. In other words, they want to be like you.
There are a few things you can do to find out exactly who your target audience is without going into years of demographic research. Who has time for that, right?
- What Problem Are You Solving?
First, you need to take a good look at your content or products. What problem does it solve? Whose problem does it solve?
For example, if you have a food blog, you might be solving the problem of what to cook for dinner.
But who is cooking the dinner? Are your recipes geared toward the working mom or are they more for the busy bachelor?
- Who is Your Existing Audience?
Another thing you can do is to thoroughly analyze the people who already visit your site and read your material. Do you have a few subscribers? Send out a quick email and ask them a couple of questions. Post a blog post asking what types of content they would like to continue to see. You’ll be surprised at how many readers are eager to help you out.
- Check Out Your Competition
This is possibly the most informative study you can do. Spend some time finding websites in your niche. Take note of the sites with the most interaction – comments on blog posts, Facebook shares, etc. Check their Alexa rankings.
Once you’ve found the sites with the most traffic, find out who their readers are. Follow some commenters on their blogs. Interact with them. Visit their tribe.
You can be sure that if they are interested in the information on a similar website, they will be happy to check yours out too as long as you are adding value.
The fact is, you can spend a lot of resources on market research and data analysis, and depending on your business model, you may need to. But chances are, using these tactics will help you narrow down your audience. And once you do, direct all your attention and marketing efforts toward this exact audience. You’ll find that the more you narrow your focus, the more your audience will stick around.