Automated Sales Process
Automated Sales Process

Know your Prospect: Identifying your Target Audience

There are very few universally appealing brands. Trying to appeal to everyone can backfire; marketing messages become diluted, budgets are increased, and your efforts are less focused. You may also be losing potential sales by not giving your customers the actual information they need, therefore, identifying your target audience is crucial from the offset.


It goes without saying that marketing and sales professionals should always keep their target audience in mind. Taking this approach will help you maximise your marketing impact and increase sales. Believe it or not, it is relatively easy to identify your ideal customers, but many people aren’t engaging with the right level of contact.


What Is a Target Audience?

Even though it may seem straightforward, many factors can contribute to defining a target audience. A target audience is simply a group of people who fit into a particular demographic and set of behaviours. Businesses focus their products and services on these groups of customers to attract them and gain their business.


Businesses often use as much information as possible to determine their target audience and, as a result, they usually develop multiple personas, enabling them to further personalise their marketing efforts.


Examples of target audiences  

Now that we know what they are, let us look at some of the attributes used to define target audiences. As a rule, the more information you have about the users of your products or services, the easier it is to develop personas.


You can work with a wide range of data, but they generally fall into three categories:


  1. Demographic: Data about a customer’s socio-economic condition, for example, age, gender, education, income, and geographic location. When planning a campaign, these parameters can be combined in numerous ways. Your target audience might be young adults (ages 18-24) with degrees who live in big cities.
  2. Interests: Knowing what your users are interested in can add an extra layer of personalisation. With knowledge of their hobbies and passions, you can better target your marketing efforts. You can expect sports fans in your target demographic to be especially interested in upcoming sporting events.
  3. Purchase intent: Knowing if a particular group of customers recently looked at a specific product or service usually indicates that they are considering purchasing it. Depending on what they are looking at, you can provide them with more detailed information.

This three-part approach can help you define your target audience on many levels. By using the filters within Sales Navigator as a guide to the above, you can identify the customers who are most likely to engage with your brand, you can also understand how to attract new demographics.


“Sales teams and marketers rely on target audience data to make better decisions, but a target market is different from a target audience.”


Target Market vs Target Audience

Target market is a term often used incorrectly in conjunction with target audience. In both cases, a company targets a specific market segment with its products, services, and brands.


There are, however, some significant differences. In general, these differences relate to how marketing and sales departments target potential customers and how well they understand them. 


For clarity, let us look at a more detailed definition of each:


  • Target Market

Target market refers to the group of people your product or service is aimed at. This group of people may be interested in what you are offering, but they may not. Marketing and sales professionals are responsible for getting their products or services in front of these individuals and building brand awareness amongst them.


Target markets tend to be quite broad. To narrow your approach, you can then segment them by demographics such as age, gender, income, etc. Knowing your target market is the first step in knowing your target audience.

  • Target Audience

An audience target is a group of people within your target market who are likely to respond positively to brand advertising. There is usually a much smaller group of people in your target market, and the potential to engage with your business is often higher.


Companies often target many different audiences and campaigns are typically run based on several factors. They will focus on a range of elements relevant to their target audience.


It would help if you considered the following aspects:


  • Consider their interests when creating content
  • How to attract their attention to your content
  • Think about how they will respond to the content

Audience vs Market

The main difference between these segments lies in their scope. Overall, your target market is broader and less inclined to engage with and buy from your brand. Target audiences are more specialised and often more likely to be interested in what you are offering.


To maximise your marketing efforts, you must understand how these terms fit into your brand. Knowing whom your products or services are aimed at can help you tailor your approach when engaging with them.


Why Should You Need to Define Your Target Audience?

You may already recognise some of the reasons you need to define your target audience. However, because the subject is so detailed, many people do not consider every facet of it primarily. 


A key part of your business model is defining your target audience for several reasons:


  • Focus

Focus is an important element of brand messaging. As the saying goes, ‘If you try to talk to everyone, you talk to no one.’ By identifying your target audience, you can appeal directly to them and weed out those who will never interact with your brand. Many customers overlook brands that do not resonate with them, which is why focusing on your target audience is vital. 


  • Knowing their pain points

You can start seeing the world from your target audience’s perspective once you have data and information about them. What do they like and dislike? What interests them? You will also be able to identify the problems they face and the obstacles preventing them from solving these problems. Once you have recognised these problems, you can start to pinpoint solutions. 


  • Marketing solutions

Understanding your customers’ needs and obstacles gives you a unique advantage. Identifying your products or services can benefit your customers and solve their problems. Your marketing strategies can enrich their lives by giving your customers what they lack.


  • Tone and language 

To resonate with your customers, you need to use the right words and tone of voice. You cannot accomplish this if you are taking a broad-brush approach, so identifying your target audience is essential to giving your efforts a focus. Connecting with your customers in a way they understand is key to making sure your brand understands them. 


  • Refining your offering

Understanding your target audience benefits more than just your marketing. Understanding how your customers think and feel allows you to adjust and improve your products and services to meet their needs. By identifying new areas to explore, you can fill your customers’ wants, which benefits them and you.

These things contribute to things like brand recognition, brand loyalty, and customer satisfaction. Additionally, you can tailor your marketing and products to meet the needs and wants of your target audience. 

Defining your target audience together with your marketing team

After learning what a target audience is and why it is so important, let us look at how to define your target audience. Below, we have outlined several steps you should follow.


Step 1: Identify your unique selling points

When marketing your product or service to potential customers, the number one goal is to satisfy their needs and fulfil their desires. However, this isn’t an easy task. As long as you keep this goal in mind, you can make it a reality. To do so, you need to identify the needs and wants that your brand can fill. 


To determine your USP, you need to answer a few questions. What are your unique selling points? Why should people choose you? What needs do you address? What kind of customers do you have?


Your answers should be clear and concise. Customers are interested in the benefits your product or service brings, not the features you offer.


Identifying who your target audience is can be accomplished by identifying these benefits.


Step 2: Define your target market 

You can identify who would be interested in your product or service by learning what advantages it offers to customers. We need to revisit the three main points of data we outlined earlier – demographics, interests, and purchasing intentions. 


You can narrow down your target market by applying these segments to it. There might be a specific set of age groups, people in a specific location, or people who have particular interests. The deeper you dig into your target market, the closer you come to an understanding of your customer persona.


Step 3: Be aware of your biases 

When thinking about ideals, it is easy to get carried away. Assumptions lead to conclusions, and before you know it, you have reached a highly speculative conclusion. There is no doubt you are passionate about your brand and everything it offers, your bias, however, can cause you to make mistakes.


Do not make assumptions when you are trying to define your target audience. In addition to market research looking at trends and competitors, you should also test what you are offering to ensure that people are interested. Make sure your brand fills a need in the market.


Step 4: Check your target market 

After you have outlined your target market and narrowed it down to your target audience, it is time to assess whether those areas are worth serving. 

Is your target market large enough to sustain your business? Aside from knowing whether they can afford your product, you also need to know how often they will purchase it. 


In addition, you should check out the competition, if there is any. That will help you to further refine your unique selling point. If there is no competition, you need to find out why.


How to Research Your Target Audience

Understanding your target audience begins with research. There are many considerations to be aware of, and research is needed to help guide your decisions. These include surveys, customer interviews, and other forms of feedback.



When it comes to target audience research, there are some tried and tested methods. Specifics vary depending on the business, niche, and audience. However, they usually follow a similar trend. Here are the key steps:



1. Check your assumptions  

This is relevant considering what we discussed earlier about paying attention to your bias. When you think you know the answer, it is easy to get carried away with a great idea. But you should always confirm your assumptions. 


You can do this by writing down what you believe about your target audience. You should not assume they are experts on your particular product or service because they fall into a niche you have identified. After listing out your assumptions, you can begin testing them with your research.


2. Review existing research

If you are in a field that is already established, you can turn to existing research and case studies. This can be an invaluable source of information about your target audience, whether it comes from industry journalists or general market researchers.


3. Conduct surveys

A survey can be a fantastic way to find out what potential customers think about a variety of topics. By not crafting something of value, you risk diluting the effectiveness of your research. Combine qualitative and quantitative research methods.


Your quantitative surveys should be as specific and objective as possible. Be clear in your answers. Do not use words that leave room for ambiguity, such as ‘could’ and ‘should.’ 


When conducting qualitative research, you can leave answers open-ended. This can reveal more about why customers behave the way they do. 

Multiple choice, free text, scales can all be part of a survey. There are merits to each, and you should test each method to see which is the most effective. LinkedIn provides a free survey tool that allows you to get the thoughts of your potential customers and then use this data to reach out to them with an offer.


4. See what your competitors are doing

What your rivals do and do not do can teach you a lot. After all, they’ve already done their market research. Look at ways they advertise to potential customers if they have the same target audience as you. 


5. Take a look at existing interactions

What are your customers’ current interactions with your brand? Examine your social media channels, analytics software, blog comments, and other customer interactions. The demographics of your current market and how they view what you do can help shape your current market.


Multiple choice, free text, scales can all be part of a survey. There are merits to each, and you should test each method to see which is the most effective. LinkedIn provides a free survey tool that allows you to get the thoughts of your potential customers and then use this data to reach out to them with an offer.


6. Examine your results

Once your surveys have been completed, you should spend some time analysing the results. Do not rush this process, as it can lead to false conclusions. However, you should be able to construct a customer persona from the existing data and your own research. 


Be careful not to make false comparisons. A correlation in your data does not necessarily imply causation. When thinking about the results, consider the context in which you reached those conclusions.


7. Making Use of Your Findings

Now that you’ve done your research and you’ve decided who your target market and audience are, now what? It is not a straightforward question – and that’s a good thing. With your findings now at your disposal, you can apply them in many ways. Here are just a few to get you started: 

Content creation 

Creating content that’s relevant to your target audience is one of the best ways to reach them. You should provide them with relevant, well-researched, high-quality information that will interest them. Engaging content will encourage people to share it. 

Blog posts, articles, videos, and social media content are all examples of the type of content you should create. Mix them up across multiple channels to get the best results. 

Engage influencers 

Influencer marketing is one of the hottest trends right now. Influencers may help you reach your target audience in an effective manner, thanks to the rise of social media. Research people who operate in your niche and contact them about a potential partnership. You will be able to generate additional leads and reach new audiences. 

Because influencer marketing is a relatively new field, it may be difficult to track how effective it is. It can also be difficult to gauge your return on investment. Be aware of both and plan accordingly. 


Marketing targeted to your ideal customers is a tried-and-true method of reaching them. You can target your adverts based on a variety of factors, whether you advertise on search engines or social media. 

You can easily keep an eye on your digital advertising activities since it is such an established field. Engagement, ROI, and other key metrics can be measured by many different services. 

Get social 

You can reach your target audience through social media platforms such as LinkedIn Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. In addition to paid advertising, it gives your brand a voice and lets you join the discussion. 

You can get a good sense of what’s going on in the larger industry by using hashtags. There are numerous niche-specific topics you can get involved in.


Time to find your target audience

In this blog, we have covered all the information you need to identify your target audience. So, it’s now up to you to find yours. Potential customers are waiting for you to engage with them, and the details we’ve covered here will help you connect with them. However, our solution can dramatically streamline this process for you, automating the connection and messaging element allowing you to focus on the wider parameters of your business – discover more about our automated sales solution here.

Did you find this blog interesting? Check out this one about boosting your lead generation and optimise your profile.

Automated Sales Process
Automated Sales Process

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