They have always been there, that big crowd, “The Masses”, but now so are their profile pics, and blog posts and social media profiles.
It seems like there is more we can know, more we already know, and more information we should dissect, examine and compile if we want to be successful marketers.
The relatively microscopic amount of information we have in our virtual networks — those people we have instant access to — is extensive enough and scattered enough to make us wonder if we possess a data goldmine or if we’re trying to hit a moving target in a data wasteland.
So how do you market to YOUR crowd, and not THE crowd?
Tie a string from these two things to everything you do:
Trust and strengthen your core. As you work to identify and communicate with your target audience, keep your own brand and core strengths firmly in mind. This might sound obvious but it can be subtle, especially when it concerns product positioning. It’s easy to unintentionally re-position a product or even an entire brand by trying to find a product for your audience, instead of an audience for your product. Both activities have their place, but if you are unable to market your product because your product is constantly changing, you’ll be a moving target your audience just can’t hit.
Get distracted with purpose. Distractions can be viewed as unplanned research that leads us to new product ideas, introduces us to new customer bases, and opens our eyes to critical industry changes. However, unplanned research should have clearly defined boundaries. The sooner we identify a research activity as either a valuable use of time and energy or a potential waste of resources, the better.
2. Your Audience:
Your target market is becoming less faceless, less nebulous. It seems less defined by either reality or our imaginations. Much of the work of “imagining the other” is done for us by machines. This can weaken our compassion muscles and make us lazy in our responsibility to focus on the other person in order to imagine how we can interact with and help them.
Keep your target audience in mind in the most tangible way you can. The man or woman behind the keyboard and profile pic is real. Not virtual. You might discover that to speak sincerely and authentically to your audience you have to throw out a lot of what you thought you knew and get back to the basics that people are attracted to: Remembering names, showing you care (in a way that they can feel), and being real while being professional.
It’s no coincidence that ‘I feel you’ is the new ‘I hear you’. In an age when so many aspects of life are lived through a ‘feeling-less’ medium, the sincere feeling is still what’s real, and now, more valuable than ever.