1. Determine the purpose of the audience analysis
At first, it may seem that the purpose of the analysis is clear – to find an audience that will buy your product / service. This is the case if your task is to sell one product and say goodbye to the client. But, if you have a sales funnel and you want to interact with the client as efficiently as possible, it is better to decide on the purpose of the analysis.
For example, when I do my analysis, I use the following goals:
- Determine a solvent audience that is more likely to make a decision from the first touch
- Define as many audience segments as possible
- Create a detailed portrait of the audience
- Conduct analysis at the level of determining the largest number of interests
Therefore, it is important to determine the purpose of the target audience analysis, so that the question does not arise: “Is this information important to us?” after you find out that part of the audience loves morning walks with pets.
Ask yourself a question:
Why do we conduct an analysis of target audience and how will it help us?
Answer it yourself or discuss it with the customer. It is not necessary to give a long, detailed answer. This should be the goal that you stick to when doing the analysis.
2. The 5W Sherrington technique
Suppose there is a company that sells bed linen. The target audience is girls 27-40 years old, they buy in branded clothing stores, live in cities with a population of over one million and often travel.
Alas, this will not be enough to define the “pain” of the audience and formulate a value proposition. That is, the better and more detailed you define the audience, the more effective it will be to interact with it.
Why 5W method?
In this article, I share my experience and working tools that I use in working with clients. Of course, there are many methods that can be used to analyze your audience. But I only talk about what allows me to receive detailed information for building an advertising strategy and not go into endless study of the audience, which does not lead to a result.
5 questions that you answer during the analysis:
1. What? – What kind of product do you offer?
If you have a range of products, answering this question will help you segment your audience by the type of products they are interested in. If you are promoting one product or service, then you can omit it and focus on the needs of your audience.
2. Why? – Why do you need a product?
By answering this question, you form hypotheses and begin to highlight audience segments. To answer the question, you can:
- Analyze customer correspondence, responses in comments and find out the reason why people buy your product
- Ask the audience through a survey in interaction channels (Instagram, Facebook, groups with reviews)
- Conduct field research in locations your audience frequently visits as well as points of sale for your product
- I will continue to lead examples with the bedding company, since this is one of the active projects that I am currently engaged in.
3. Who? – Who buys the product?
You need to pinpoint exactly what audience segments are based on the answers to the previous question. But if a company plans to change a product or create a product line, the analysis will need to be done again, as audience segments will expand 80% of the time.
3.1 Audience characteristics
For each segment, you must select the categories of characteristics that are needed for the analysis. This can be: gender, Geo, age, income level, marital status, place of work.
3.2 Interests and behavior of the audience
When analyzing interests and behavior, I divide them into 4 groups:
1) Direct – which are directly related to a product or service
- Decor items
2) Indirect – those that are important to your consumers besides the product
- Interior design
- Brand clothes
- Women’s accessories
3) Categories of Interests are the broad interests of your audience
- Arrangement and repair
- Family and Children
4) Audience behavior – that is, how the audience behaves and makes purchase decisions
- Involved buyers
- Recently moved
- Travel frequently and regularly
4. When? – When to communicate with them?
Everything is simple here, you choose a period for interaction with each segment. It can be an entire year, a period of a year, a specific month, holidays, or a week. In order to understand when it is better to communicate with the audience, analyze the number of segment activity throughout the year and, if possible, the order base for each segment.
You can also select the best time, day and period for advertising after 1-2 months of analyzing these indicators.
5. Where? – Where do these people buy from you?
It is important to know exactly where to communicate with the segment and where it is better to show the product offer. There might be a breakdown here:
- desktop and mobile versions of the site
- groups and communities in social networks
- marketplaces or online store
- YouTube or Instagram and VK
In my practice, it is better to select several channels for each segment and test the audience response in each and then leave 1-2 for the segment.
3. Gathering information about the audience
In this section, I have compiled channels for collecting information about the audience, based only on those that I myself use in my work.
Perhaps, in the next article I will write in more detail about channels for collecting information about audiences, competitors, advertising creatives, if this topic is interesting. In the meantime, I’ll tell you about the pros and cons of the following:
- Poll on page
The most active channel of interaction with the audience is used. A small number of answers, but those who filled out, generally answer extensively and give detailed answers
- Google Forms Document Survey
Newsletter by groups and communities – if any, on the customer’s pages, or using email newsletters
- Information in niche communities
Time consuming, but you can collect a lot of internal information on audiences. The main thing is not to collect everything, write down a list of information that you need and look for it exactly.
- Analysis of cases in similar projects
I use this channel more as a tool for generating advertising hypotheses, and not for collecting information about the audience. Since almost all cases, either have lost their relevance because of the time when they were published or because of embellishment of facts about the numbers. But sometimes in these cases you can find additional interests or characteristics of the audience.
You can also try to collect information from the landing pages of competitors, but I use this channel in extreme cases due to the fact that all the information collected needs to be questioned and analyzed for a long time.
I remember about wordstat.yandex, google trends, Rosstat, but:
- I don’t use these services now.
- These are the first sources where competitors run when analyzing the audience.
- The channels for collecting information that I listed above are completely enough for detailed analysis.
4. Check the audience in the “field”
During my work as an Internet marketer, I can say that all the information and data that you use should be questioned and checked several times during its analysis. The best way to find an audience is to conduct constant tests and analyze the results, this is the only way to find your clients.
My testing strategy
I am sharing one of my audience testing strategies, which is supported by at least 5 projects in which I used it.
After I finished the audience analysis, I choose 2-3 segments in which I am most confident. Next, I choose channels for interaction and create 3-5 advertising offers for each segment. The test period is coordinated with the customer, but on average it lasts 7 days.
When the test period is over, I analyze the results obtained from each segment and after that, I make a decision about their effectiveness. But, even if I got a good result, I run the following segments in parallel to check all the hypotheses.