Lift the Curtain: Who is your business’s ideal audience?

There is a common theme between those looking to initiate a business and those wanting to up-level their public speaking skills.  That is understanding your target audience, or as some coin it, the ideal client.   There are many speakers and authors out there that preach this rule, that you must understand your audience in order to gear your marketing or brand to them.

I wanted to bring some understanding to this concept of the target or ideal client/audience.  The why equates to giving what someone needs.  If you do not know how to gear your content, products, or services then it is truly a crapshoot that your audience is listening to.  Social media, email marketing, and social advertising are very loud and unless you have a minimum of $100K to spend on adverts, you still need to understand your audience.  If speakers do not understand their audience, their message may go unheard or it becomes time for a potty break in the room. Who is listening to you and who will your message truly impact? So let’s unpack this further.

Listen to Everyone: Your ideal audience or client has a face, an occupation, special interests, and likes or dislikes. Your target ideal client is asking for advice from you in certain ways. Your ideal audience can be your influential space, i.e.: the audience at a TedTalk, or company webinar, or LIVE Facebook. Identity all these components and then talk to everyone.  Really?! Yes! Interview your ideal client. You have to understand their needs first and deliver to their needs, not your own. Before I do a workshop, I call out to the group, what do they wish to learn more about? I want to know what they want before I compile and prepare to deliver irrelevant content. The more you know, the better equipped you are to deliver and gain momentum.  Try and gain all the details.

Define Current State: Go one step deeper. Within your target client or audience, who within that scope is ready for what you have to deliver. Go deep and define the current state at all levels.  You may find that there is an overarching ideal audience, but it has subgroups that may outline a different conversation at first and move forward in momentum over time. Outline this process for yourself so that you can define the who and the why of the current state.

Outline Future Potentiality: Once your ideal audience is complete and you interviewed those in the space to define the current state of need, you can now start developing your content, driven to that audience. This is where the impact comes in. Your impact is directly correlated to your defined audience and their expectant why.  Speakers such as Gary Vaynerchuck and Vishen Lakhiani are both entrepreneurs with completely different ideal/target audiences.  Follow their writings and sociability and you will find that although both entrepreneurs, speakers, and authors, their mantra and manifesto are disparate. This is not a mistake.  It is part of the development of a marketing plan that drives toward the audience that wants to consume.

The effectiveness of your communication is not solely in your content, but how your content drives toward those you wish to influence.  Speaking to everyone about things that are relevant to you, and not them, will not be successful, yet so many in business do just this, they try to push an agenda without understanding the audience’s why. The most influential presenters can grab the attention of an audience because the audience is drawn into the conversation and feels a sense that the one speaking is speaking individually to them. Know your audience first, define the current state, and then outline the future possibilities. This will require attention and time, but in the end, will equate to success.

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