How to identify your audience
August 30, 2019
The first and most important step when building a successful product is to identify your target audience. In this article we will have a look at how to find and evaluate possible audiences for a product.
Identify possible audiences
In the first step we need to figure out how to identify audiences that might be useful to us. In order for an audience to be useful to us it has to fulfill at least one of the following two properties:
- We are familiar with the audience.
- There is a good reason for us to try to get familiar with the audience.
Why do we care so much about familiarity? Because to be useful to our audience, and to identify and solve relevant problems, we need information about the audience. What drives them? What are their values? What are their needs? Where do we find them? Only if we are able to answer those questions we will be able to create something that is valuable to them. In order to do so we will either need to be already familiar with the audience, in the best case because we or people close to us are part of the audience. In this case we would already be able to answer a lot of the most important questions about the audience and would have a head start in the race.
There is however also the possibility to serve an audience we currently don’t have enough information about, but we need to consider the additional cost of researching this audience and therefore we need a good reason to do so. Now what would such a good reason be? It might be that the specific audience is very willing to spend money, is very loyal or we might just be really curious about them.
Research the audience
We might or might not already have some information about our target audience, but before we build anything we should still do more research on the audience. The most important questions we should be able to answer are:
- Do we like this audience? Would it be fulfilling to interact with them?
- Is the audience very broad and do we need to niche down to have more specific audience?
- Do they care enough about their niche to use a possible product in this space?
- Is money usually involved in what the audience does? If yes they might be more willing to pay for a product that makes their life easier or saves themselves money.
- Do we have a possibility to reach them?
- Where do we find this audience? Reddit and Facebook groups might be good starting points for this.
Monitor the audience
The last question is of special interest to us, because we will need to constantly look out for the needs of our audience. The more popular places (on the internet) that we identify where our audience hangs out, the easier it will be for us to understand them and to identify things that they might need.
A blog by Manuel Kruisz a Freelance Software Developer based in Vienna