How To Research Your Target Market - aka Audience Espionage
Woah there Worditude - spying on clients? Getting a little creepy aren’t we?
Fret not lovelies. I’m not talking about illicit spy cameras or rummaging through your clients’ rubbish.
We’ll be keeping our hands clean and our conscience cleaner by carrying out all the necessary snooping online.
Why Bother Researching Your Target Market?
‘Why bother’ is an essential question before you embark on any mission, so let’s answer it now.
Customer research is a great way to get:
✔ Feedback on your product ideas
✔ Phrases to use in your sales page copy (for that ‘oh my goodness, you read my mind’ reaction)
✔ Ideas for problem-solving, value-adding, social media/blog posts.
Are Your Target Market Research Questions Going Unanswered?
Standard target market research tips include:
* Post questions on your social media
* Ask questions in online communities where your ideal client hangs out
* Email your list and ask them
But this approach is often fruitless.
I’ve heard this problem So - Many - Times.
An eager, enthusiastic entrepreneur wants to get input from their target audience, so they email their list, or post in Facebook groups, something along the lines of: “Hi, I’m a dog trainer/business coach/nutritionist. What would you like help with?’……..and they get no response.
So how do you research your target market when your target market won’t answer your questions?
Next Level Marketing Research Tips
Here’s how you get this info when your audience won’t talk to you.
#1 ASK BETTER QUESTIONS
If someone popped up on my newsfeed, announcing their desire to help me with my diet, I’d scroll on by while continuing to shove my afternoon cookies into my gob.
However, if I saw the question ‘What’s your relationship with food like, and how would you like to improve it?’ - now that’s something I could answer.
Broad, generic questions, get vague useless answers (or often, no answers at all).
Try asking a very specific question - ‘What would make being a business-owner even better for you right now?’ or ‘What’s the hardest part of being a business-owner and how would you like that to change?’
#2 DON’T EXPECT SOMETHING FOR NOTHING
One of my Worditude Club Members had the genius idea to offer a $5 Starbucks card for anyone who answered a short survey. She says it’s the best $50 she ever spent. It’s amazing how helpful people will be when they feel valued - and just offering a cup of coffee in return for a few minutes of their time is often enough to get the answers you need.
Use an online tool like Typeform to gather your answers in a quick and professional-looking way.
And offer a gift that will be universally appreciated by your audience and won’t be too hard, or expensive for you to administer.
Expecting lots of replies? Enter your survey respondents into a giveaway rather than sending a gift to each and every person who takes part.
#3 CONDUCT A LITTLE AUDIENCE ESPIONAGE
The answers you seek are already scattered across the Internet. You just need to know where to look.
My two favourite places to spy on my target audience are:
a) Amazon book reviews - 📘📙📕
Find books that broadly tackle the same problems you fix, and read as many reviews as you can in an hour. Look out for the problems that prompted the customer to buy the book, what they liked about the book, and anything they felt was lacking from the book.
b) Facebook groups
Don’t ask. Just research. Use the search tool to find posts related to your industry. For example, if you’re a relationship coach, do searches for ‘partner’, ‘spouse’, ‘marriage’, ‘relationship’….you get the idea. Notice the language the poster uses to describe the problems they are facing.
Target Market Research Frequency
Investing time, energy and even money in this customer research will reap big rewards later.
You will find it so much easier to write your sales page copy when you know exactly what your audience needs to hear, and you can often use the research as inspiration for Facebook lives, marketing emails and blog posts.
Schedule some time in your diary to repeat these exercises at least twice a year, so you can keep your offers, and copy relevant for your target market.
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