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How To Reach Your Target Audience: 8 Strategies For 2023

how-to-reach-your-target-audience:-8-strategies-for-2023

Knowing how to reach your target market is the only way to increase your market share and improve sales. Get it wrong, and your finances may suffer. 

So, how can you reach your target audience and get them interested in your product or service?

What is a target audience?

A target audience is a specific group of consumers identified by you as most likely to want your product or service. They are consumers you hope will eventually become your customers. Target audiences can be dictated by age, gender, location, income, interests, or other demographic information, such as their job titles or those with a particular pain point or at a certain life stage. 

Why knowing how to reach your target audience is important

It’s helpful to know who your target audience is. But, if you don’t know how to reach them, you’ll struggle to get your brand and products in front of them. 

Knowing how to reach your target audience is important because: 

  • It helps you market smarter: Having insight into what works and what doesn’t can help you invest in effective campaigns and pull back on the duds. 
  • It influences product development: Defining the hurdles and aspirations different target audiences face can help you design and test products that are relevant and relatable. 
  • It increases revenue: Targeted marketing lets you focus on the efforts and audience segments that generate the most revenue—or, alternatively, lets you analyze why the other segments aren’t converting.

How to reach your target audience: 8 effective strategies

Ready to reach your target audience? Here are steps to get started. 

  1. Define your target audience
  2. Learn where your audience is active
  3. Create relevant content
  4. Use targeted advertising
  5. Work with influencers
  6. Create a referral program
  7. Use hashtags on social media
  8. Stay in touch with your audience

1. Define your target audience

First, you need to know who you’re targeting before you can reach them. Define your target audiences: 

  • Have a solid understanding of your products and who might benefit from them
  • Look at your existing customer profiles and carry out audience research
  • Go deeper than demographic information and explore psychographic data 
  • Create core target audience segments 
  • Check out your competitors and their customer base 

Understanding who your target audience is informs every other part of your marketing strategy.

Building a marketing strategy after completing a big research project feels like cheating

Defined target audience? ✅
Messaging strategy ✅
Channel priorities? ✅
Campaign ideas to test? ✅

Results? ✅✅✅

— Katelyn Bourgoin (@KateBour) February 17, 2021

2. Learn where your audience is active

After you identify your target audience, it’s time to figure out where they hang out online and how they prefer to interact with brands. Do they spend most of their time on Instagram? Do they prefer trade publications over corporate blogs? Understanding where your target audience is most active online (and offline) will help you deliver your message on the right platforms. 

3. Create relevant content 

Your content is the message you’re sending to your target audience. Try to understand their unique needs and struggles and create content that answers them. Consider creating blog posts, email newsletters, social media content, ads, videos, or other content to share in relevant communities and use data to create more of the stuff your target audience loves. 

Great content is:

-Helpful
-Logical
-Targeted
-Structured
-Easy to digest

To do this:

-Think critically
-Use active voice
-Kill filler & redundancy
-Include unique insights
-Answer “why” & “how”
-Speak to your target audience
-Aim for a low readability score

What else?

— Erica Schneider (@ericasmyname) August 23, 2022

4. Use targeted advertising

“Create and they will come” isn’t always true, especially for new merchants. 

Use targeted ad campaigns to reach your audience on the platforms they’re active on. Google ads and social media ads all offer advanced targeting capabilities to help you reach the people who matter. You can target your campaigns based on various characteristics and behaviors of your audience, including their age, location, online interests, life stage, job role, and income. This ensures your ads are only shown to people who will more likely be interested in your brand and products.

A screenshot of an Instagram ad from Roman Originals clothing alongside a screenshot of a list of criteria for the ad to be shown.
Roman Originals uses Instagram ads to target people who have an interest in women’s clothing, are frequent travelers, and live in the UK.

5. Work with influencers 

Influencer marketing involves working with people who’ve built reputations around a specific niche, and a community that caters to that niche. Influencers create content for their channels, promote your brand, and, in return, help you make more sales. Team up with influencers whose audiences are full of people you’d like to reach, create content that shows your brand in its best light, and use the influencer’s pre-built trust to drive their audience to your own website and platforms. 

Instagram post from jewelry brand Nominal showing influencer Sofia Pena wearing a necklace shaped like Mexico.

Jewelry brand Nominal partners with influencers to promote products on its own Instagram page. Instagram

6. Create a referral program

Referral programs encourage your existing customers to recommend your products to their friends and family—a.k.a. people who are likely to be similar in wants, needs, and characteristics. 

An old but relevant Nielson study shows that recommendations from family and friends are the most credible form of advertising, and incentivizing happy customers with cash back, future discounts, and free products is a great way to foster closer relationships with your existing customers. 

Screenshot from luggage brand Away showing a referral form where customers can send a recommendation to friends and claim a $20 discount on their next order.
Luggage brand Away encourages existing customers to share the brand with their friends to claim $20 off their next order.

7. Use hashtags on social media 

The right hashtags on social media channels like Instagram and TikTok can extend your reach and engage your target audience. Find hashtags that are trending in your niche and incorporate them into posts on your social media channels. This will ensure you show up in the feeds of people who are actively searching for that hashtag and relevant content.

Screenshot of an Instagram video for snack brand Love Corn showing how the brand uses hashtags in its social media captions.
Snack brand Love Corn uses hashtags to reach people who are vegan and looking for delicious snacks. Instagram

8. Stay in touch with your audience

When you’ve managed to reach your target customers, the last thing you want to do is leave them hanging or disappear completely. Stay in touch with the people you reach by encouraging them to sign up for your email list, sending regular, relevant emails, and continuing to connect with them on their favorite social media platforms.

How to reach your target audience on specific platforms

Different platforms call for different tactics. Here are some key ways you can increase your visibility and reach your target audience on major social channels. 

How to reach your target audience on Instagram 

  • Explore existing audience data in Instagram’s analytics to identify your top-performing content 
  • Research relevant hashtags and add them to your posts
  • Partner with influencers who have an audience you’d like to reach 
  • Use Instagram polls to find out what your audience wants to see 
  • Use location tagging to find people who are close to you 

How to reach your target audience on Twitter 

  • Join relevant conversations and Twitter Chats to increase your visibility 
  • Create custom lists to engage with different audience segments 
  • Use relevant hashtags in your tweets 
  • Share content that’s relevant and useful to your target audience 
  • Tweet consistently to maintain visibility and increase your reach 
  • Interact with other accounts and share personal commentary 

How to reach your target audience on TikTok

  • Research and use relevant hashtags so your posts show up in searches
  • Engage with your target audience through the comments section
  • Partner with relevant TikTok creators 

Run TikTok ad campaigns and use the “Promote” feature

TikTok is special because you can engage with your target audience in unique ways and grow a massive following in a short amount of time.@fullsquadgaming nailed their strategy and hit 1M followers in only 6 weeks. Here’s a thread of how they’ve built their audience ? pic.twitter.com/LSBTOiCji5

— Brian Bosché (@BrianPBosche) February 7, 2021

How to reach your target audience on YouTube 

  • Optimize your videos so they show up in relevant searches
  • Partner with YouTube creators to spread the word 
  • Be consistent with your posting schedule 
  • Research and use hashtags so your videos are easy to find 
  • Run YouTube ad campaigns to reach the right people 

How to reach your target audience for a small business

Defining and reaching your target audience is critical to the success of your small business. When you understand who you’re targeting, what platforms your audience is most active on, and the type of content they need, it’s much easier to promote your brand and sell your products. 

Stand out from the competition by nurturing relationships with your target audience. Here’s a recap of how you can do that: 

  • Define who your target audience is and where they spend their time.
  • Create relevant content for your target audience based on their unique wants and needs.
  • Choose the channels you’ll focus on to reach your target audience and use platform-specific tactics to increase your visibility. 
  • Run influencer marketing campaigns to expand your reach.
  • Create a referral program to encourage existing customers to share your products with their friends and family. 
  • Don’t forget about your existing customers! Stay in touch to foster deeper relationships with the people who already buy from you. 

How to reach your target audience: Takeaways 

It’s much easier to sell your products and grow your ecommerce store when you’re targeting the right people on the channels they prefer. The more data you get on your existing customers, the more you can hone in on niche audience segments to ensure you’re delivering highly relevant content on the most effective platforms.

When you’re just getting started, make sure you have a defined target audience. Then, figure out where that audience spends their time, create relevant content, and use tactics like partnering with influencers, incorporating hashtags, and referral programs to help you reach them.

How to reach your target audience FAQ

How do you reach a target audience in marketing?

– Define who your target audience is and where they spend their time.
– Create relevant content that speaks to their needs.
– Use targeted advertising to reach the right people.
– Partner with influencers to increase your visibility.
– Create a referral program to take advantage of personal recommendations.
– Use hashtags in your social media posts.
– Don’t forget about your existing customers!

What are 5 things you must consider for your target audience?

1. Demographic information like their age, gender, and location.
2. Psychographic data, like their challenges, interests, and aspirations.
3. The platforms they frequent the most.
4. What content they want and need from you.
5. How you’ll create an ongoing relationship with them.

What are the 3 target market strategies?

1. Differentiated marketing: When a brand creates individual campaigns for several different target audiences or segments.
2. Concentrated marketing: When a brand creates one marketing message for a singular, niche target audience.
3. Undifferentiated marketing: When a brand creates one campaign with the same message for its entire audience.

This originally appeared on Shopify and is made available here to cast a wider net of discovery.
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