An overview of multiple techniques to map your target audience
A few weeks ago, we wrote an article about “Writing To Reach You Target Audience“. In this article, we wrote about 5 tips that you should follow to increase the traffic on your webpage. This new article is about two tips that we discussed in this article, ‘know your audience’ and ‘think like your audience’, the basics of knowing your target audience. Of course it’s easy to say, know your audience and think like them, but how do you map your target audience properly? That’s what we’re going to do today, based on a two of our own favorite techniques.
Technique 1: The Empathy Map
The first and one of our favorite techniques is “The Empathy Map”. This technique takes the ‘know your audience and think like your audience’ to a whole new level. You’ll be able to get more insights in the ways your audience thinks, acts and who influences them. To use the Empathy Map technique, you’ll need the map of course:
The Empathy Map shows you how to map your target audiences behavior and how to influence their way of thinking. This map treats 6 different aspects of your target audience. What they hear, think & feel, see, say & do but also their pain and gain. Each of these areas helps you to look from a different perspective to make you truly understand your target audience. For example, if you read a question like ‘What influences them?’ in the ‘hear’-section. you have to think from the hear perspective. Like rappers singing or DJ’s talking on the radio. For every target audience, your answer will be different and that’s exactly what makes this technique so handy. This is the best way to get insights that you wouldn’t think of in the first place. You can always think of more questions that fit the things that you want to know and answer them in the different sections!
Technique 2: Persona’s to humanize your target audience
The other technique that we truly recommend is making a persona out of your target audience. If you want to know how to think like your target audience, you can use this technique. All of the details that you know about your target audience, you can humanize into one of these persona’s. You’ll create a lifestyle, gender, age etc. If you’ve created a complete personage, you’ll be able to test all of your ideas and content to this person. You can choose to search for some real people that fit your personage and ask for their opinion or you can fit your ideas to what you think that your target audience likes!
But there are a few things that we have to warn you about. It’s possible that your personage doesn’t fully cover your whole target audience. In this case it’s very important to segment your target audience properly. Every segment gets it’s own persona, to make sure that you can test your content to all of them. The other important thing is that you won’t stereotype your target audience too much. Of course, you’ve got to have some stereotypes but make sure that you won’t think that every person that twitters, likes to gossip or every wikipedia reader is a nerd. If you pin yourself too much to these stereotypes, there will be a change that you ban a big part of your audience and that’s something you want to prevent. One thing to keep in mind is that educational level is an important aspect of a persona, especially when creating content – to make sure that your content fits that level and has the right readability level, it should not be too complex or too easy to read. Having your content at the right quality level, will increase conversion!
We can truly recommend to use these techniques and if you want to get the most complete image of your target audience, you can also use them both at the same time. These two techniques and also the technical optimization with Textmetrics are easy to combine, great isn’t it?
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Basic tips & tricks
Of course, SEO copywriting is really important. But in the end, the main goal of your webcontent is probably to reach your target audience. To make sure they like, understand, share, feel your content. That’s why you should write for your target audience. Don’t just write what you like to write, but write what they want to read. That’s how you reach your future customers! But that may be easier said than done. That’s why we made a little list of the basic tips and tricks for target oriented writing!
Tip #1: Know yourself
It may sound a bit stupid, because of course you know your business. You know exactly what you do. But lots of businesses forget to tell why they do what they do. What their motivations are. And let this last thing be the most important thing.
People mostly don’t buy Coca Cola or Apple because they think the physical product is better than their opponents, they buy it because they like the motivation of the companies. ‘Think different’ (Apple): We’re not for everyone, just the ones that understand our status. ‘Make it happy’ (Coca Cola): We will help you to enjoy your life, Coca Cola makes everyone happy.
You have to keep your motivation in mind at all times. Don’t (let someone) write a word before they know your business from the inside and the outside. You will write the best content if you truly know yourself.
Tip #2: Know your target audience
The next tip is to know your target. A good way to make sure that you know your target, is to describe them by using a persona. Just make a little list of personal characteristics of someone in your target audience. It could be something like this:
John Sparks, 26 years old, lives in London but grew up in the countryside. He love to play soccer with his friends in the weekend but he also likes to grab a beer in his favorite Irish Pub in the neighborhood. He lives with his girlfriend in the middle of the city, but in the summer he likes to go on a holiday, back to his roots. John is a professional marketer.
The next step is to write your article or content for this John Sparks. By using this technique you make sure that you will see your target audience as people that you can communicate with, not just as customers. An important aspect to consider is the education level of your audience and making sure that you write your content at the right reading level – not too complex, not too easy.
Tip #3: Speak the same language
If you write your content for John, then you have to make sure that John wants to read your content. You reach John in a different way than you reach Janet, a fifty year old lady from France. But to reach them the best way you can, you should think about a few things.
Are you talking to professionals? Then you can talk with more technical terms as when you talk with amateurs. Does your audience read your content for fun, or to learn something? That are some of the many questions that you could ask yourself. Every target audience speaks their own language and it’s your job to be the interpreter of your business.
Tip #4: Think like your audience
The next step is to think like your audience, not like a business that tries to sell your product. People like John are looking for a lot more than just a product. They’re looking for a solution or an experience, and that’s something that you should provide. You should focus on what your audience is looking for, and not on what your company is trying to sell.
Tip #5: Know where to lead or find your audience
Sometimes it’s just important to be visible for your audience. When you rule an organization like the government or something like that, then it’s just important that they know where to find what they are looking for.
But a lot of companies have to find their target audience themselves. Than you have to find out where to find your audience. You have to find out on what social media or forums they are. If you know where to find them, then you will be a lot closer to knowing how to reach them.
With the tips that we gave you today, you must be able to become quite a good targeted writer. Do you have some tips of your own, about how to write for your target or about anything else? Feel free to leave them through the support form! If you want to know how to reach your target audience in the search engines, you should check out the free trial of Textmetrics. In this tool you’ll be able to find numerous tips to technically optimize your texts for your target audience.
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