Your audience is who consumes your content. They’re the people you want to grow to know, like and trust you. And they’re the folks who you want to help and eventually sell your products and services to. But if you don’t know who your audience is, it’s really difficult to create the content that they will read, share and act on.
Why Audience Matters
Getting in front of the right people in your business can mean the difference between success and a lot of long, frustrating hours. When I started my business, I did a lot of in-person networking. I spent money joining local networking groups and, as much as my introverted tendencies allowed, I ventured out to local groups on a regular basis.
What I found was that my ideal audience wasn’t in any of these networking groups. Sure, there were business owners there—real estate agents, insurance agents, local brick-and-mortar businesses, multi-level marketing agencies, franchises, mom and pop shops, etc. And while these were all legitimate businesses, none of them were ever going to hire me to write copy for their websites. You see, nearly all of these businesses were part of a larger, over-arching company that determined what content would be on their website and when it would be published. The business owner had no control over this. And when they were able to hire me to write something, there was so much red tape involved that my profit margins were narrow. Too narrow.
Not knowing who my ideal audience was held me back. I was talking to the wrong crowd and was frustrated because I wasn’t making any headway. Now that I really know who I want to market, not only has my income increased substantially but I’m enjoying what I do so much more.
[bctt tweet=”Not knowing who my ideal audience was held me back. Do you know yours?” username=””]
Narrowing Your Audience
Honestly, there are some things you can be told over and over again and you just won’t believe them until you’re ready. That’s where I was when I kept hearing that I needed to narrow my audience.
But I’ll limit my income.
But I’ll lose clients.
But I’ll be idle and won’t grow my business.
All of these excuses for why you’re not narrowing your audience are just that—excuses and lies. It took me years to believe that narrowing the list of people I’ll work with was a positive step in the right direction. And as soon as I did, my business grew.
You and your business are not the best fit for everyone looking for the services you provide. Just like you don’t like everyone you meet, not everyone will like you. (Sad fact, but it’s the truth.)
[bctt tweet=”When you narrow your audience, the possibilities to grow your biz open wide.” username=””]
When you choose to work with a narrow group of people, you open up wide the possibilities to showcase your talents for those who want to work with you. You do better work. You become THE person who others refer. And your business benefits, not to mention your pocketbook.
To figure out how to narrow your audience and write content just for those you love to work with, you first need to figure out who those people are. Who are your favorite clients? Who do you wish you could work with? What would that look like? Know what problems your audience has and how you can solve those problems.
Finding Your Audience Where They Are
Once you know who it is you want to work with, you need to know where they’re getting their information right now. Who are the leaders in your industry that they turn to in order to learn about what you do (SEO, graphic design, collaborations, copywriting, coaching, marketing, etc.)? And if you’re a product-based business, where are they currently buying items similar to what you sell?
You also need to know where your audience is spending their time. There’s a huge potential for growth on Instagram right now—if that where your audience is hanging out. For some, that audience is on LinkedIn more than any other social platform.
To find out where your ideal client is, ask them! Send a short (no more than 4 questions) survey to your current clients and ask them:
- Where do you spend most of your time online?
- Where do you go to find out information about <something you provide>?
- Would you rather read a blog post or watch a video?
- How much time do spend on the following social platforms? (Then list the platforms.)
To encourage responses, offer a discount on an upcoming service or give them a freebie. You’ll be surprised how many take you up on the offer!
When you know who your audience is and how to connect with them—and you’re not casting too wide a net—you can laser-target your message so you’re reaching the right people every time. Don’t be stubborn like me and wait three years of full time business to get clear on who you want to work with. You won’t lose your client base; you’ll gain loads of ideal clients who are chomping at the bit to work with you.