In this post/video transcript we are answering the what, where, and how behind Define Your Reader.
WHAT IS DEFINE YOUR READER
Define your reader has several other names:
- Define your target audience
- Define your customer profile
- Define your customer persona
It means who is going to buy your product or service. Bloggers need to define their readers. Business needs to define their ideal customer.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT
You need to know your business well enough to know who needs your products or services. Trying to market to everyone is setting yourself up for failure. It is a business killer.
When you know your target market you will not waste time producing content that is not what your reader wants or needs. It adds focus to your marketing. It drives your platform and content choices.
SIDE NOTE: As you define your reader you may find you have more than one ideal customer. You will need slight adjustments in your marketing to reach each customer type. i.e. wording, content, graphics
HOW TO DEFINE YOUR READER
You need to create a customer persona. This requires 3 steps. It takes time and effort. It is better to start with the right plan than waste time on the wrong one.
Step One – Research
You are looking for demographics, behavior, needs, and goals. There are two types of research.
If you have customers:
- survey your customers
- ask sales or customer staff
- check your database
If you don’t have customer:
- check your competitor’s customers – Niel Patel discusses it in his article 25 Sneaky Online Tools and Gadgets to Help You Spy On Your Competitors
- check your competitor’s social media accounts for comment, questions, and conversations
If you have a large budget you can hire a marketing firm to do your market research. I am going to assume you do not.
Social Media is an excellent way to do your research.
- see what is pinned
- see what hashtags are trending in twitter & Instagram
- join Facebook groups
These are a few of many ways to use social media to research. In Haley Hill’s video, she lists Top 5 Ways to Use Social Media for Market Research.
You are looking for conversations on these platforms. What are they talking about? What problems do they have?
Step 2 – Build A Customer Profile
The best way to build a customer profile is with questions.
- Needs & Goals
HubSpot has an article with a list of 20 questions. Twenty questions to ask when making a buyer persona
I have a customer profile spreadsheet that I send to clients. It has questions like the following:
- Education Level
- What website do they spend the most time on?
- What is their problem and how does your product/service solve it?
Here is the link to the Google version of my spreadsheet. Customer Profile Sheet
Answer as many questions with as much detail as you can.
Step 3 – Make Your Personas
You write a representation of a real buyer. It focuses your content to specific buyers not large groups. When considering any content or ads you should look at your personas.
Here is an example of one of personas.
“Jane Doe is a busy owner/operator of a real estate business. She is female and to years of age. She has primary responsibility of her aging parents. She knows she needs on social media but feels overwhelmed. She becomes frustrated when she navigates and posts. It is a challenge for her to keep up a current and professional Facebook page. She wants more time for herself and clients. Social Media are taking time from them. She wants short how to’s and tools to help reduce her time on social media.”
You could drill down deeper to have an extremely developed persona. This helps you to know when to make a small change in your marketing.
An Example: One of my other personas is Mary. A 30-year-old female that is married with 2 children. She wants to spend more time with her children. She is similar to Jane Doe in all the other ways. This one small difference will change the language and content I use to grab her attention. There is a lot out there on social media so you need to be mindful of grabbing attention.
If the steps 2 and 3 seem to challenging or time-consuming You can use PersonApp to help you develop your profile/persona. It is a hybrid of steps 2 and 3. If you are a small business this works fine. I gave a demo of it on my Facebook live video Define Your Reader Social Media Strategy. Here is the link to my video playlist. https://www.facebook.com/JerriGailCreates/videos/
Still working on making those smoother. The demo is toward the end. I am going through all the steps to build your social media strategy using FB live. Follow me to get the notifications.
I hope you feel ready to define your reader. Let me know if you use my sheet or the PersonApp tool.