So I’ve been thinking a bit about demographics.
Hold up – does everyone even KNOW what the word demographic means?
A demographic is a target audience that your business is trying to reach.
A lot of my success in marketing campaigns has been because of thorough analysis of the demographic that the business is catering to. Even though you would think they would know their customers better than you, there are a few key challenges that business owners come up against:
- They want to cater to all audiences; or perhaps some audiences, because of FOMO (fear of missing out).
- They are therefore unsuccessfully able to “solve” the audience problem as there are too many people and too many problems.
Let’s look at this from a practical example. Say I have a life coaching business. I’m after clients for my business. My key goals are to become completely online as a business so I can travel, and to sell them training programs.
I decide that I want to cater to “anyone who is interested in life coaching”. I get the word out, run some ads, and guess what? A big fat “nuh” – no leads, no business.
Now imagine, I change that business around. I get specific. I decide I want to help new mothers to start and run a business from home and give them coaching help with this.
The first thing I do is list down all the things I know about new mothers:
- They are time poor
- They would do anything for their child
- They wish to contribute to the income of their family
- They are struggling, exhausted and worn out (in some cases)
- They feel like if not now, when?
From here I would then start to conduct research on new mothers. For example, invite some friends who are new mothers to take a coffee, show them what you have come up with and see if they agree or disagree with your “perceptions” about them. This is a great way to clarify insights into your demographics and confirm your initial understandings (In other words, you don’t have to be a part of this demographic to understand them – you simply need to ask questions and be willing to listen to the feedback). Market research doesn’t have to be expensive.
For some demographics, say, CEO’s of large firms – it could be more difficult to do the research. However, through the use of tools such as LinkedIn, you may notice some trends in relating to similar issues their businesses are facing, articles they follow, groups they subscribe to. If you have the budget, investing in further market research on this demographic could also prove useful.
Once I have a clear idea of my demographic, the next step is:
I determine the WORST PROBLEM they have and I provide A SOLUTION to their worst problem!
So for a new mother, we could possibly say the WORST PROBLEM they have is that they have gone from being an income earner, to NOT, almost overnight. And the solution would be – let’s get you earning the amount you were earning before baby, and then more. And that would be the message.
Don’t mess with this – more than one problem is not better. Once you have nailed your initial demographic and the leads come rolling in, you can start working on further demographics or sub-segmenting. But for now – ONE SOLUTION to ONE PROBLEM.
Let’s say that again: ONE SOLUTION to ONE PROBLEM!
So, back to our mums.
I have determined their biggest issue / worst problem – in this case – income earning capacity after baby. And I’m going to come up with a solution to this problem, that involves me. As a life coach, I could work on either a strategy of getting them back into the workforce, or let’s say, running a business from home. I would start to run copy addressing these issues. Copy that resonates with my audience specifically, and get them focused on the solution.
- Pic of baby.
- This little bundle. You’ve sacrificed it all for them. Your career, your income earning capacity, your body… it will all be worth it, you tell yourself. But in the meantime, let’s start you a business.
- Brand Name A – The life coaches who get you, and will help you get there.
This ad will resonate with our target audience and compel them to click and read more or find out more. From here, we have the ability to test and drill down even further.
When I ran my own gym, I started the gym with all female clients. Everyone told me – oh you won’t get anywhere, you’re cutting off half the population. But I was confident in my choice. I knew I was confident and enjoyed training females better. Fast forward to the time I had a team of trainers and a bevy of clients and completely full classes. Something had to give and I had to make a call on defining even further the types of clients I wanted to train. I looked at my high value clients and I saw something in common with them all.
- They all had kids at school and were all married to men with incomes over $100K.
Through identifying this key factor, moving forward I was able to specifically use campaigns to target females who were married with a joint income of over $100K, and the rewards were strong.
Let’s imagine, we do the opposite. Imagine we cater to:
- Student graduates
- Small business owners
- Anyone else that is interested in life coaching.
Many people would think – oh that’s better – I’ll get more leads with that. But what actually happens is this:
YOUR MESSAGE BECOMES DILUTED!
So now, we have to guess what is the biggest problem for all of them.
- For mums it could be the > lack of income
- For CEO’s it could be > keeping staff performing productively
- For small business owners it could be > cashflow
- For student graduates it could be > finding their first job
You might as well walk around with a placard saying “NEED A LIFE COACH – CALL ME NOW”. The point it, it’s useless. You will not speak directly to that client, and you will spend ALL your money catering to ALL YOUR DEMOGRAPHICS.
So, let’s remember separate campaigns for each, separate mediums for each, separate strategies for each. Laser focused targeting is SO important.