This was sent to my email list a few months ago. As I have said before, what I send to my email list is not published or shared anywhere else. It is exclusive to my subscribers, but I decided to make an exception today for 2 reasons. One, I think this topic is very important and the basis for everything I am doing for clients right now. Second, I want to share with you the type of information you are missing if you have not subscribed to my list. I hope you like the content and subscribe to my weekly email.

As I was getting ready for my panel discussion at Downtown Frederick Partnership, I was reviewing the list of questions. I noticed a few of them have to do with how to choose a target audience. If you have a niche this is fairly easy to determine because you have built your marketing around a specific target audience or two. For many companies, especially established companies, this can be harder for them to define. This is why I think that you have to begin by evaluating who your current customers are to get a better picture of your target audience.

Even if we do have a defined target audience, we need to understand who we are already selling to. What does your customer base look like? Are there any consistencies in demographics or psychographics that stand out to you? If you interact with your clients on a one-to-one basis, it is easier to evaluate similarities and identify any trends. Years ago, when I looked at our customer base I realized we worked with a lot of technology businesses. We asked some of our technology clients why they liked us and we were able to use that information in bringing on more technology-based clients.

We can also get insights onto our target audience by looking at who follows and interacts with our social media accounts. You can look at your analytics to get a snapshot of the demographics of your followers. If you have people that you interact with on a regular basis, check out their social media profiles to get a sense of who they are and what they like. This can become the basis for a customer persona.

The point is if you haven’t already defined who you want your target audience to be, you should start with your current customer base to see where you are now. That doesn’t mean you can’t expand your audiences, but it gives you a start. You also may find that you are selling to a group of people you never would have thought about as a target audience. Use that information to expand your reach. I will say when you do this evaluation, use your best customers, not the bad ones.

Do you know who you are selling to?