Deciding to step out on your brand journey is only the first step, and doing so without direction can leave even the most seasoned adventurer lost in the wilderness. Branding can in some ways be like hiking – it’s easy to get out and start, but without direction you can end up lost and alone in the dark.
Defining your target market is crucial as it creates a path for you to follow by eliminating certain criteria and focussing only on the important.
But how does one go about defining their journey? Well, we’ve got some tips to help get you started.
1 – Know your audience
Building a brand that resonates with an audience begins with this step. You need to know them inside and out so well you could pick them out in a crowded room. This means knowing as much as you can about their geographic, demographics and psychographics.
Geographic traits are the where – not just the location they live, but also where they hang out. Which coffee shops or bars do they spend their time in? Which trade shows or networks do they attend?
Demographic traits are the personal characteristics – how old are they, what gender, what income etc. This is where you can really narrow down your target audience through careful selection of traits.
Psychographic traits are their behavioural characteristics – their personality, needs and expectations, goals and buying habits.
Using these traits you can form an image of your audience that allows you to connect on a deeper level.
2 – Use Empathy
So, you know the who, but next is the why. Being able to empathise with your market gives you a powerful advantage as it allows you to understand their emotions. As we buy emotionally, not logically, this gives your brand an edge when communicating with your market.
Be sure to use this information sincerely, however. Be genuine with your branding, as using this knowledge to create a disingenuous brand will soon cause the market to grab their pitchforks and turn against you. People don’t like being taken advantage of, so act honestly.
3 – Understand your Customer’s Challenges
Understanding your market’s challenges is key to creating effective branding that resonates with them. You need to know what a customer is thinking and feeling at the point of contact. understanding their state of mind allows you to craft an identity that directly appeals to this, solving a challenge that the audience has.
If you can show that you have a suitable solution to a customer’s concerns, they are more likely to interact favourably with your brand.
4 – Look at your Community
If you already have some interaction with your community, it’s a great idea to look through it for patterns and trends. If you already have your ideal client in your community, ask them what they like and dislike so you can attract more people with similar traits. We like to feel like part of a tribe, so engaging with your community is a great way of understanding who they are.
5 – Don’t try to be all things to all people
A sure-fire way of encumbering yourself with a bland identity is to try to spread your net too wide. Focus on your ideal customers and brand with them in mind. If your focus is too wide, you run the risk of creating something that isn’t memorable. Oscar Wilde said ‘there is only one thing in life that is worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about’ – trying to be all things to all people will make you easily forgettable. Define your audience and brand for them. You may rub some people up the wrong way, but at least you won’t be forgotten!
Ready to answer the call to adventure? Book in here for a meeting or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have some burning questions.
If you want to learn more about what you can do to start your brand journey, download our free ebook here.