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Know Your Audience

A Step by Step Guide to Audience Intimacy for New Entrepreneurs

· Entrepreneurship,Business,Marketing

What You Offer?

When you start a business, you usually have an idea of what you want to offer to people and how you are going to make money, i.e. you know what services or products you want to sell to people. You may even have a general idea of who you want to serve, or who would buy from you.

Why that doesn't work

The problem with this, is we tend to be a little bias when it comes to our own ideas, products and services. This can lead you to spend months building your business, only to struggle to get sales and be left wondering why.

People First Approach

The truth is that businesses are successful only if people want to buy from them. It takes PEOPLE to purchase your products or services (even if it's aimed at businesses, you'll have a person who makes the decision). So before you waste months building or promoting your brilliant business, you've got to come to one simple understanding:

Without people your business fails to exist

That's why you've got to start with a people first approach. People are what make you successful. Both external people like customers and internal people like employees. So you've got to start your business with the sole goal of figuring out who you want to serve, and everything about them.

What You Need To Know About Your Audience

Many new entrepreneurs think all they need to have is a general idea of who they want to sell to, but that couldn't be further from the truth. You need to know way more about them then their age, gender and income. You need to understand their inner workings, what goes on inside their head that extends far beyond the basics. Here's a short list:

  • Their Hopes
  • Their Fears
  • Their Goals
  • Their Failures
  • Their Heros
  • Their Enemies
  • Their Beliefs
  • Their Motivations
  • Their Excuses
  • Their Frustrations
  • Their World View
  • Their Background
  • Where They Are Stuck
  • What Problems They Have
  • Who They Blame
  • How They Feel
  • What Words/Phrases They Use To Describe Themselves/Goals/Fears/Problems/Etc.

How To Find Your Audience

Start with who you think your audience is and ask yourself the question:

Where would this person hang out?

That may seem like an odd question at first, but you can't get to know someone if you never hangout with them, and you won't meet them unless you hangout where they hangout. This could mean different things based on your business and whether it's local in a physical location or online, but in general here's some things to ask yourself:

  • Where do they go for information
  • What do they like to do for fun
  • Who's content do they consume
Think
  • Meetups
  • Podcasts
  • Books
  • Blogs
  • Instagram Accounts
  • Facebook Groups
  • YouTube Videos
  • Live Events
  • Conferences They Attend
  • Stores They Shop From
  • Causes They Rally For
Once you know where they hangout, you've got to go meet them and interact with them until you can answer all of your questions and are certain you know them intimately.

How To Get To Know Your Audience

Once you know where they are, you've got to invest the time into getting to know them. This is not the time to sell them anything, or offer them anything. Just talk to them, become their friend. Below is a simple format that works well

  • Thank them for connecting
  • Ask them what they are here for or what they are working on
  • Connect with them over their objectives
  • Tell them about yourself
  • Ask them why they want it so badly or what their end goal is
  • Keep in touch
  • Checkin on them
  • Ask them how they're progressing
  • Check if they are stuck
  • Offer any advice you have
  • Offer to help if you can help
  • Ask if you can send them any info you know
  • Share what you are going through and how you're progressing
  • Share your own frustrations/challenges/stuck-ness
  • Share your wins/victories/progress
Basically just be a good friend/colleague who expects nothing in return. Become the person they like to hear from. Confide in them, and watch how quickly they confide in return. Help them whenever possible (introductions, links, advice, time, etc.). Once you've established a trusting and liking relationship where you both know each other, you can then ask more questions and dig even deeper

Once You Know Them

Once you know your audience intimately, and I'm not talking a few of them, I'm talking many many audience members (think 100+), you'll be able to validate your products/services/offers and make sure it solves a real problem/frustration for them and is something they are willing to pay for, before you invest your time, energy and money. And once you do create that awesome product or service you'll know exactly how to position it to them so that they buy.

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