It seems redundant, but we’ll say it again anyways: You should always research your target audience before shooting your content.
While it’s possible that your target audience will change (or better yet, grow) to include a demographic you hadn’t expected, researching your present audience will help you enormously in crafting the message you intend to send, as well as how you intend to send it.
ASK AND ‘YE SHALL FIND
Yes, ask them how they feel. If you’ve never engaged with your clients/customers/audience before, you will be surprised how many people are genuinely willing to take the time to describe what they do (or don’t) like about a particular idea. Don’t just sign up for this purpose though; use what social media outlets you already have to ask what they would be interested in seeing. More product demos? A day in the life of a creative director? How you make those fabulous little erasers that look like Minions?
You’d be surprised at the answers, too. Sometimes the stuff we take for granted as being boring or mundane is exactly what others find so interesting about our work.
DEETS ON TWEETS
The ad platform on Twitter is a surprisingly interesting tool. Described here in a great article from Social Media Examiner, you can research your audience based on variables such as gender, interests and geography, as well as “targeting” these users based on their TV-watching habits.
You can also gather leads from Twitter campaigns. A little bit of money spent upfront can really pay off later, even if you use it mostly as a tool to find out who your audience is and what they like.
Let’s say you have a local organic bread business. You’re want to invest in some video content but, before you do, you need to do a bit more research on who’s interested in what you’re selling; and how to reach them once you have. A Twitter campaign allows you to target by geographic location (say, Vancouver), languages, keywords, and more. In this case, attaching the words ‘organic,’ ‘local’ and ‘healthy’ to your campaign could help reach an estimated audience of 10-100k people.
You can even identify people who are Tweeting about specific shows, say Top Chef Canada, which may get you closer to your desired audience. Designed to help you “collect leads from an audience interested in your business,” it can be a powerful tool for gathering leads.
BLOG & POD
Also touched upon by Social Media Examiner, guest blogging is a great way to get introduced to potential customers and see what it is they’re interested in. Particularly for small business owners and those who have a smaller budget, this can be an invaluable marketing and research tool. Podcasts also often encourage guests to participate, which then gives you access to an already established audience base–many of which are likely your target market as well. Usually a simple online search for guest blogs along with your favourite keywords is enough to find what you’re looking for.
If you do happen across an opportunity like this, extract as much as you can from it. Think of it as getting your feet wet as you learn more about who it is you’re trying to reach out to.
MORE WHERE THAT CAME FROM
If you really want to research your audience, you must reach out in different ways. Not only will it help you put together a firm marketing tool you can then use when designing your video content, it will eventually become part and parcel of how you interact with your customers or audience.
In addition to guest blogging, you can subscribe to those who have the type of base you’re looking for. Commenting (always positive and always useful) can be a great way of reaching out if it’s in the right type of forum. Facebook fan pages, Google Trends and trendingtopmost will all give you an idea of whom you would like to connect with.
Embarking on video content is sometimes overwhelming, but always exciting. If you would like to get excited about your project, give us a call. We love hearing from new people and are always game to talk shop.