Finding Your Target Audience2:48 with Paul Boag
A discussion with your existing clients can yield opportunities to discover helpful ways to reach new ones.
[Paul Boag] Okay, so you've made your decision to specialize. 0:00 You've got to find that target audience, and that's not easy. 0:03 You need to decide on who you're going to specialize with. 0:07 Now a good place to start is by looking at your existing clients. 0:11 That will give you an idea of whether there are 0:15 particular groups of people that you've already got some experience with. 0:18 What we did at my company is we realized that we'd done a university website, 0:24 and we thought that might be an interesting sector to specialize in. 0:32 We had a really good working relationship with the client, 0:36 and so we went to talk to them, and I'd recommend that you do the same. 0:39 Go and find yourself a friendly client, sit down with them, and ask them 0:43 about how they learn about their sector. 0:48 Are there mailing lists that they're on that are dedicated to their sector? 0:52 Are there forums that they read about their sector? 0:57 Are there conferences that they attend?—or meet ups? 1:00 or is there a trade publication? 1:03 You find a group that has some form of community around it. 1:06 So with that higher education example I gave, there was very much 1:11 a community of people that talked to each other through mailing lists, 1:15 and forums, and all of those other kinds of things. 1:18 Once you have identified an audience like that— 1:22 a community that you can reach out to—then things get really interesting. 1:26 So how do you go about reaching this audience? 1:32 Well a good starting point is to participate in the community surrounding that audience. 1:35 Mailing lists and forums are great. 1:41 Join in the conversation, but remember, don't get too spammy. 1:44 Don't push your services, but just give advice. 1:47 Another thing that you can do is offer to write for trade publications 1:51 or blogs because they're usually desperate for content 1:55 and if you're willing to put in the time they'll probably publish it. 1:58 Another option is to attend or speak at conferences. 2:03 Going along to conferences is a great way of networking 2:07 and building relationships with the community you're targeting, 2:10 and if you can speak at them, all the better, 2:14 although, admittedly, not everybody is a natural speaker. 2:16 Finally, you can write for your audience as well. 2:21 You can start putting out blog posts that use the right key words 2:24 that engage that audience and draw them in. 2:27 Ultimately, there is one aim here, which is to provide content 2:30 and real value to your audience, not to spam them, 2:34 not to market them in the traditional sense, but to provide them something tangible, 2:38 and that is what we're going to cover in the next video. 2:44
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