A Beginner’s Guide to Audience Development

You finally did it. You’ve launched your brand or business. Now how do you attract an audience to what you do? The answer? You need to spend time focused on audience development. Read on to find out three important components of audience development, and how to attract your ideal customers to your brand or business.

Audience development is the process of growing and cultivating your pool of ideal customers. You can do this by studying their likes, dislikes, and needs, and use that information to turn them into long-term, repeat customers. While marketing typically only refers to selling a product, audience development centers around developing relationships with the people you serve. And this is becoming more and more important for today’s brands.

Before you hop on Facebook or Instagram and try to sell what you offer to anyone you’ll listen, stop! You need to develop your audience first. Here are a few reasons why:

1. Build a relationship with the people you serve.

When you have a grasp on your target audience or demographic, you can use that information to craft your messaging. It can also help you understand where and how to engage with them on socials. When you take time to learn your audience, you can create a content marketing strategy that shows you understand your ideal customer/base.

2. Use consistency to increase your brand awareness and engagement.

In the last few years, social media has completely changed the game on how brands connect with their audiences. It is now necessary to connect with your ideal customers and build trust before you even begin to sell. The key here is consistency in how you present your brand and where you show up to attract your customers. Nurture your email lists and social media platforms, and don’t abandon these efforts when you start making sales.

3. Audience development done right means more traffic and sales.

Once you’ve honed in on your target demographic, you can create the tools and resources they need authentically. And a large audience in your sales funnel that already trusts your brand will mean more paying customers in the end.

Ready to develop your audience? Here’s how:

1. Optimize more than one social channel.

Too many brands rely solely only on their Instagram or Facebook audience for sales. The problem is these audiences are not truly yours, and algorithms can change at any time. By inviting followers to also engage on your blog, sign up for your email list, etc. you enrich that relationship and increase the chances of them purchasing from you in the end.

2. Create and promote original content.

Content creation is a key part of growing your audience and building up your brand. If you want your ideal customers to buy from you, they need content to engage with that builds trust in who you are and what you offer. If you’re a new author, this may look like creating shareable blog posts. If you’re a podcaster, post new episodes regularly. You can also use video to entertain, engage, and reach your ideal audience. And don’t forget to encourage them to share your content with their followers as well!

3. Use more than one marketing tactic.

Audience development is about creating a full 360 plan of connection. Here are a few tactics you can start using for audience development. Pull out your content calendar, and start plotting out a few to try this week!

  • Email campaigns – When you send out regular emails for your brand or business, you deepen the connection with your current audience, and stay top of mind when you have new offers.
  • Social media outreach – If you don’t have a social media strategy yet, now is the time! Once you’re posting consistently, social media is a great place to connect with similar brands and new customers who want what you offer.
  • Use for user-generated content – If you see people sharing content relevant to your brand or business, ask them for permission to repost it! This is a great way to crowdsource your content and attract new eyes to your brand.
  • Loyalty programs – Loyalty programs are a great way to build repeat customers. If you offer more than one product or service, give customers a discount or something free after they buy from you multiple times.
  • Targeted advertising – If you already have some proven success, it may be time to explore targeted advertising for your brand! This post can get you started.
  • Referral programs – Referral or affiliate programs are a way to offer perks to your followers when they share about your business or what you do. Everyone loves a perk!
  • Events – These can include virtual events like workshops, seminars, and even just occasionally hopping on Facebook Live.

As with anything worthwhile in your business, developing your audience takes time! But the sooner you get started, the sooner you’ll be able to grow and strengthen your audience relationships, and jumpstart sales for your brand or business.

What questions do you have about audience development? Let us know in the comments!

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