You have a product or service, and you believe in it — you know it’s great. You may have even gained some traction in your market and started to see sales grow. But now you feel your business could, or should, be doing more. And you know what? You’re probably right.
Your products or services should be in front of more eyes; your website should be getting more attention; you should be making more sales. It’s true for almost every business. The solution, almost every time, lies in your marketing. How can you better market to your target customer?
1. Know Your Brand and Your Products or Services
The first step to better marketing to your target customers isn’t to get to know them better. It is to get to know you better.
Nowadays, customers want to buy from brands they trust. The foundation of your brand and marketing strategies is your brand story. This inward-looking assessment will reveal your motivations, your mission, your vision, and your values.
Once you’ve undergone this process, you can see the picture of your business more clearly. You’ll have identified the true purpose of your business, enabling you to move forward to fulfill that purpose. You can develop your positioning statement and your value proposition. From there, you’ll start to understand your target customer, create content, and develop an SEO strategy.
2. Understand Your Target Customer
The next step after writing your brand story is getting to know and understand your target customer. It seems almost intuitive, right? Once you know yourself, you can begin to know others.
Your target customer is not only the person who will be served by your products and services. They’re also the person who will identify with your brand. They’ll share your brand with everyone they know because they love it so much. That’s your target customer.
Understanding your target customer is a natural progression in your brand story. It will help reveal why you started your business in the first place and who you’re serving. What are their motivations? What do they look like? How are they feeling?
You’ll create a persona of this buyer so you can speak directly to them and their needs. You’re addressing the specific audience that would fall in love with you if only they knew you. Ideally, you conceived of a product or service you knew the market needed. Now, you must identify who it is in the market that you are targeting.
3. Create Relevant Content That Adds Value
Once you’ve identified your target customer, speak to them through content. Send emails and create blog posts, social media content, and videos. Mix up your content so you can reach your audience from different angles.
Whatever type of content you’re creating, ensure it is relevant. Get your finger on the pulse of both your marketplace and your audience. Who is your competition, and where is your buyer persona now? There is no killer in business like being out of touch.
In addition to relevant content, you also need to use your content to add value to your target customer’s life. Create guides, blog posts, infographics, and videos that help them with their daily struggles. The more you provide real solutions to their specific problems with free content, the more they will become loyal supporters. Furthermore, as your audience becomes more engaged, Google is more likely to pick up your content and rank it well.
4. Develop a Solid SEO Strategy Around Your Target Customer
As you create your value-added content, develop a search engine optimization strategy that ensures your content reaches your target customer. SEO helps your audience find you. It integrates keywords that reflect your persona’s search intent and helps build authority and credibility.
Most importantly, robust SEO gets Google’s attention. The more attention you receive from Google, the more attention you will receive from your target customer. The reverse is also true. The more you engage your target customer, the more shares you will get. Google notices that, too.
Remember also that your content and SEO strategy are not about creating content for Google. They are about letting Google help you reach your audience. Great SEO recognizes that keywords, backlinks, and even Google Analytics are tools. They allow you to better understand your target audience, what they want, and what they respond to. Your SEO strategy should use all the tools at your disposal and be prepared to evolve with the changing market.
5. Play Well With Others
Finally, once you have all the above critical elements firmly in place, learn to play well with others. But what does that mean?
One of the greatest contributors to the success of any business is word of mouth. Far more important than advertisements are reviews, referrals, influencer shout-outs, and shares and likes. People trust other people. And when someone they know tells them they love a product or service, they’re that much more likely to buy.
So don’t be afraid to ask for reviews, shares, likes, and referrals from your customers. Offer a discount on your products and services for every referral. Remind your audience that shares and likes will help others find you. That means your company can stay in business, continuing to provide the products or services they love.
You can also work with influencers to extend your reach. Target influencers in your market space or those who might be regarded as one of your buyer personas. When you’re just starting to partner with influencers, work in trade rather than through straight payment. This way, influencers will be speaking from a place of truth about your products or services.
Business Success Depends on Marketing
The better you get at knowing your brand, understanding your target customer, and marketing directly to them, the more growth you’ll see. It’s Marketing 101. When you feel like you’re falling short in business, come back to these steps. They will put you on the path to consistent growth.