For businesses of all sizes, building an audience base is one of the most crucial aspects of business operations. However, many businesses find it to be one of the most challenging. Although you might have a great product or service, it can still be difficult to connect with people who are interested in what you have to offer.
We caught up with Thomas Robinson, brand manager for Marauder and BLC Apparel – two lifestyle brands with an impressive online following, to develop our top tips for business owners looking to expand their audience.
Tip 1 – Really understand your audience
The first and arguably most important step to building a brand is to define your audience. Thoroughly evaluate your product and/or services and identify who would benefit from using your brand.
You can help define an audience for your product or service through demographic segments like age, gender, location – or through social aspects like lifestyle, interests and behaviours.
Too many people often fail by trying to be too diverse. They often strive to engage everyone and will bend over backwards to try to make everyone happy.
The target audience are those individuals who are most likely to buy products or services. Don’t try to over-reach by engaging other types of consumers.
“Everything we promote and market with our brand, we do and live ourselves. I’ll be 40 and still skating and listening to punk if my body lets me, and for the people that support our brand I know it runs just as deep with a majority of them.”
Tip 2 – Align your brand identity with your audience
The tone of your brand’s messaging should match the tone of your audience. It’s the like-mindedness and connection between your brand and your audience’s lifestyle that draws in consumers. Consistency with your business’s offering is key – if your audience is focused on a specific niche category, you don’t want to stray from it. Otherwise, you could lose some of the audience you’ve already collected.
“Our inspiration comes from the lifestyle, I think the brand is a co-product of Joel and My pure desire to keep pushing things as far we can, always thinking ‘how can we do this better?’ Whether it’s a design or direction for collaborations or revisiting past ideas and bringing new life to them, most of all we are fans of everything we do -so we are constantly on the lookout for that spark that inspires us and bring it into our space and language.”
Tip 3 – Learn what you can from your existing audience
Examine the priorities, engagement habits, buying behaviours, favoured pricing, social media activity, and other details of your current audience for commonalities. Then, use this data to inform or refresh your outreach.
Consistently trying new tactics and fresh methods based on the data you gather about your existing audience will help you maintain a steady stream of new connections. The key to success is to use what you know, build on what you learn, and always be on the lookout for ways to expand.
“We are digging deeper into what we are personally and what makes us interested in a brand and then putting it to a few customers we have great relationships with and getting real time feedback, that’s the great thing about social media it’s an instant yay or nay.”
Join Networking Connexions for an exclusive business event focused on building an audience for your brand.
During this networking event, you’ll have the opportunity to learn and discuss the key strategies for successful audience building and tactics for driving engagement with your target market.
Special Guest: Thomas Robinson
Thomas has founded a number of popular lifestyle brands including Marauder Clothing and BLC Goods, with an engaged audience of over 15,000 followers. From humble beginnings of boutique e-commerce offerings, his brands are now stocked nationally in large retail chains.
Tune in to hear his insights into audience building and the secrets to reaching and engaging with your target market.
You need to utilise as many channels as possible if you want to reach more of a consumer-base. By using a diverse range of channels, you can broaden the audience you reach. It is important to consider what channels are the most relevant to your audience. Common channels include:
Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Snapchat and TikTok
Creating consistency across channels
When all channels work together to create a unified message, voice, and a brand for your company, this is known as omnichannel marketing.
Campaigns using 3 or more channels (for example, email, banner ads, and social media) have a 90% higher retention rate than single-channel efforts.
Omnichannel marketing ensures that your potential and current audiences receive 1 unified, consistent message that reflects how they have interacted with your brand.
“We have great success lately with having boots on the ground, being out and about doing events or just hanging out. Our target customers are at gigs or skating and we just happen to be there partaking in person chatting to them. People are in their own element and don’t feel like we are marketing to them, we just let them know we run this brand and give them a history run down of what it is about, and oddly enough we have been very lucky with customers purchasing that same day.”
Tip 5 – Produce great Content
One of the best ways to build an audience is to make sure you’re creating great content. Whether you’re creating YouTube videos or writing blog posts, it’s all about creating content relevant to the brand and giving the audience information they want and need. This material should leave your audience reader fulfilled in some fashion.
Giving your audience something to read, use or watch assures them that you are a reliable brand that will meet their consumer needs.
“I feel like anything transparent these days is engaging and stats also prove it. That avenue shows humility behind a company and my focus this year is to really lean on that and bring people more behind the scenes with all the cool stuff we have happening. People like to feel they are part of the process and once the product launches they feel more emotionally invested because they have seen it from the start.”
Tip 6 – Consider Cross-promotion and influencer marketing
There are likely to be other brands that target your exact audience with products or services that don’t compete with what you offer. Consider sharing your marketing messages with their audience, and vice versa.
Partnerships, co-sponsored events, and other collaborations can lift brand awareness and create positive associations with an existing product that your audience is already using. Engaging with influencers can be a great way to establish a connection and get your brand in front of a new audience.
“We pick some influencers with if they have heard about the brand and care enough to treat it like something than just a transaction, that’s why we use our friends as models because we know they are going to do all they can to make sure everything turns out epic. But we have seen great social growth with some influencers, so we will be using more in the future also.”
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