Understand Your Audience by tapping into their DesiresOct 09, 2019
Beyond that, if you haven't really thought about what your Audience wants, then you're guessing. By doing that, they aren't going to be drawn to you, and the bottom line? You're not going to make any money. Let’s take a look at how to climb into the ‘heads’ of your Audience and understand what drives them, and how you can use that knowledge to your advantage.
The ‘Disney Problem’
So here's a big problem for Disneyland. How do they manage all the Desires of 50,000 Guests daily? Well, they group them into buckets. They don't just talk to everybody the exact same way; they don't assume that grandpa and grandma want to go on the thrilling, looping rollercoaster rides. They’re there to watch little kids just have a great time and be a princess or pirate for the day. So, they make sure that everybody has something that's going to entertain them.
Disneyland has different groups: they have the parental figures, the sons, the daughters, the teens, the nerds. They have the grandparents, they have the fanboys, the people coming there for conventions - there's a lot of different demographics. And that means you can't satisfy everyone, and trying to please everyone is gonna result in you pleasing nobody. It’s a classic problem for businesses, especially those just starting out. They’ll say: “Oh, everyone is going to love my product and service!”
Well, no, unless you have a commodity like toilet paper or toothbrushes: everybody's going to be able to use those. So, say you’re doing dog training, and you, instead of thinking: “I just teach general dog training.” What if you said: “I teach dog training for working women in their 20's and 30's, who have a toy dog and who live in a city” – that’s much more targeted and specific, right? Well, I guarantee you every woman in that group (or ‘bucket’) is going to go to you first, even over the big guys like Cesar Millan (the Dog Whisperer on TV). They're going to go to you. And that's because you really focused on them and the experience that they want.
In the same way, Disneyland restaurants offer all sorts of food. They have soups and salads, they have main courses, they have desserts, they have drinks, and when you go to a restaurant what do you get? You get a menu. People can easily locate what Desires they have, and then order it on a typical menu. So menus are very important, and you need to have something similar in your Brand which we will talk about down the road, whether you own a restaurant or a dog grooming business!
Search for Desire
Once you know what your Audience Desires, then you want to define what that is, and then use Education and Entertainment-Based Marketing to create an Audience path that focuses on fulfilling one Desire at a time.
Let’s quickly talk about that. Let's say you have Cindy, who owns a Chihuahua, and they both live in NYC. So, she fits the bill, and you know that Cindy wants more than anything else for her dog not to bark at everybody on the street, and she wants to be able to take it to cocktail parties in her purse, and have everyone go: “Wow, your dog is so well-trained!” – that’s her Desire.
So knowing that, you could then create some educational training posts/white papers such as my top three tips to having your dog be the greatest dog at a cocktail party.
It's a free PDF, and then you would create an ad that would be targeted to Cindy and people like her. Cindy would go to a page where she signs up to get the free PDF, and then you have emails telling Cindy about your dog training product that she, in time, will invest in and benefit from.
That is what we call an Audience path. That’s also known as a marketing funnel, but we like to call that an Audience path, because marketing feels like I'm taking advantage of somebody: now, you can feel like you are helping them.
However, for every Desire archetype, we should have three of them. Three different blends of individual, with three unique Desires that all tie in with your business. When we define this, you can start making marketing decisions that you know are going to attract those three people. We’ll talk about grouping them into that trio in a moment.
First, though, here is the right way to market - and here's the wrong way. The right way is entertainment and education based marketing. This is where you educate your Audience with some entertaining Stories. Storytelling is the number one tool you should be using, because that engages people's emotions. If you don't stand apart from the crowd by grabbing people's hearts and their emotions, then they are simply going to overlook you. They are just not going to hear you.
So, stories are able to help you do that. Your Audience is going to understand the value and how your product or service is going to improve their lives when you educate them on it. If you just say: “Hey, buy my widget!” they're likely to respond saying: “I don't know what that is, go away & stop bugging me!”
A change in phrasing, though, can fix all that. If you say: “Hey, do you have a problem? Are you not tall enough? Well, if you're not tall enough, you need something that's going to elevate you up. “And that's why I have my shoe with these special heel lift like Inspector Gadget, and that's going to help you feel tall and confident!” The difference is that you showing them how you can help them out, demonstrating how that should make them feel.
Once you are really able to really talk about & educate them on how they can make their Desire happen, that's where your product and service just naturally sells itself. Also, when you use education and entertainment in your marketing, it's welcoming. It pulls people in, because they are looking for their problems to be solved!
The opposite of this is pushing and pressure marketing. This is where you're like; “Hey! Buy my stuff; the sale ends in 20 minutes, there's only one left, don't be a loser!” By doing this, you're literally just pushing people away because they can see that all you care about is making money. Where in education and entertainment, they see that you're really focused on giving them value. So those are two different ways to market, both wildly more/less successful than the other.
Breaking the Audience Down
You might think that your Audience has too many multiple Desires to make this possible. You need to break down and refine what they want first and foremost.
Let's say you're teaching dog training (again; hope you like dogs!). You know that some people want to get their dog house-trained. They want to know how to bring a puppy home, how to crate train a puppy, how to get a puppy to sit, how to get a puppy not to chew, how to get their dog to walk on a leash, how to get their dog to sit, and so forth.
Instead of seeing that as multiple Desires, though box them all into the ones about puppies and ones about dogs: that’s now two Desires, made up by lots of mini topics.
You can easily split up and develop a better plan of action that makes it easier to create one set of Desires within a single subtopic. Now, I could take my big Audience, everyone who wants to get their dog trained, and group them into:
• People that want to train their puppy.
• People that want to train their dog.
• People that want to stop their dog from doing naughty things.
It’s not complicated; it isn’t a million miles from the idea of market segmentation. Once I group it into three Desires, then I can really focus on giving those people the outcome and the conversation that they want to have. That's going to help them decide if they want to buy my products and services. Now, less than three and you are too broad. So if we just said oh, it's people that want to get a puppy, and people that want to train their dog, then that's great but I think you're missing out on a more targeted conversation by including a third bucket.
But if you have more than three, you are going to get overwhelmed. Because basically for each of these three Desires, you're going to create unique marketing for them. By all means, you could have more: but it’s more work, more challenge and further opportunity to misjudge the Audience.
Personally, I'd rather just stick to three sets of 80/20 rules. Probably, if you do these three the right way, then 20% of your Audience is going to bring you 80% of your results. That's why you are going for by breaking it into three: less is more in this case.
When you plan your three Desires that's really going to help you narrow down all the different opportunities that you have in front of you, which is great because you just can't do everything. We as people can only focus on X number of things in our life time. So you want to make sure those things you’re going to focus on are really what your Audience is wanting. The worst thing you can do is go off and build a whole business for something that nobody needs.
How do you figure out the three main Desires for you Brand, then? Well, that's easy. Just interview your Audience- ask them. Find out what problems they are suffering from, and how they have tried to solve them in the past.
“Oh, your puppy is barking and chewing everything and you've read some books and you hired a dog trainer and you got a DVD course. Okay then, why didn't you like those?”
If you start asking people questions, they are going to tell you what you need to know, and you will be able to dig down into what their dreams and wishes and Desires are.
Then, you know how you can improve upon the current offers in the market place. Another opportunity to take is to do keyword research. There is a great tool right on the web called KW Finder. Let’s say that you do a keyword search for ‘dog training’; it’s going to show you all the other search related terms around dog training, and then you can sort by search volume. You might find out that people don't actually type in dog training. They type in more specific terms like ‘how to train my dog to sit’ or ‘how to get a perfect dog’ – this helps you better find out the phrasing of what people are searching for. These two things are going to be really valuable for you digging deep into your Audience.
Solving The End Goal
So all three of your Brands Desires need to solve the same big end goal, albeit in a different manner. Everybody that goes to Disneyland wants to have a good time, and everybody that is buying dog training, well, they wanna have a well-trained dog. In Visionary Planner, we call that the Big Problem that you're solving.
So let's go back to dog training. Dog owner's Desires are very different.
- One type of Desire, for example, is people who need help training a puppy. So potty training, more or less.
- The second Desire is people who want to train a dog to perform certain behaviors, walking on a leash, sitting, coming when called – obedience, basically.
- The third Desire, people have a dog with serious behavioral problems. Issues like biting, whining, or anxiety that need to be immediately fixed before something horrific happens.
Different Desires equal different types of communication. If somebody wants to get a well-trained puppy, then you need to talk to that person in a particular way. Maybe you're saying: “Oh your puppy is so cute and adorable, but what happens when it's a 500 pound Alaskan Malamute and it's jumping on little kids?” Knowing the problems your Audience has, and communicating with understanding, is really what's going to make them trust you. Let's give you a few examples of how these principles work on a web site.
My personal site is mikelmurphy.com. I have three different brands on there: Moviemakin', A Little Bit of Wonderful and the Visionary Planner. While I am the co-creator of the Visionary Planner, the other two are my personal brands.
When you visit my site, I want to ask: “Hey! What are you interested in?” and I have, of course, three primary Audience Desires. Somebody interested in Moviemakin’ can go there. Somebody who is interested in my paintings can go there & somebody who is interested in business can go there. Also, near the top I say: “Hey! Would you like free training? I have training to provide if you want to know the art of movies, if you want to know the art of business. If you want to know the art of happiness, go check those out!”
It works well, and immediately portrays the exact message that I intended. That's just a real world example of taking your three Desires, and making it really easy for your Audience to determine which one is best for them.
To Wrap Things Up…
By now, you should be getting to grips with your Audience: Understanding what drives them, and how to turn that to your own advantage. Underneath everything, more important than anything else, is the idea of splitting your Audience into different segments. Once you do that, you can dive deeper and deeper into each one, understanding them better and better.
Something else to remember is that this is a never-ending process. As times change, so too does your Audience, and so too does what they want. In a recession, people want security; when times are good, they want to enjoy themselves more. It's all about the right message at the right time. If you can figure that out, you'll be well on your way to building a powerful and beloved Brand.
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