Defining the Target Audience for Your Finance Company
You can’t please everyone, nor should you try. Finance companies are no exception.
Without taking the time to identify the characteristics of your ideal customer, you’re more likely to make broad, sweeping generalizations in your marketing efforts. These are unappealing to potential customers and could turn them away from your company in favor of someone else.
The solution? Defining and going after your target audience. In this blog, we break down the basics of a target audience, why it’s an important aspect of your firm’s marketing strategy, and ways to find and get yourself in front of those customers.
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What even is a target audience?
A “target audience” refers to the specific group of people who are most likely to want to buy your product or service. In the marketing world, your target audience is the group that will see your ads or exposure campaigns (emails, social media posts, etc.).
An example of a good target audience for a financial firm could be “single, professional women in their 30s.” It’s specific, it’s timely (more women are engaging in financial dialogue than ever before), and it provides a framework for the types of content and advertisements you’ll create.
You can define your target audience by many factors: age, sex, location, income, education level, interests, and about a thousand more differentiators.
But before you do that, it’s important to take a good, long look at your current clients and who you want your future clients to be.
You might be surprised by the results, especially since more and more young people are getting involved in their finances, investing in apps like Webull and Robin Hood, and earning higher incomes than ever before.
It’s worth noting that you should no longer focus solely on the traditional “middle-aged or older, wealthy man with ample liquid assets” audience. Consider adding differentiators for younger populations, as well as other genders, ethnicities, and income levels. But we’ll leave the financial intricacies up to you.
Dangers of Not Having a Target Audience
You can certainly try a broad stroke approach instead, but it’s unlikely to work in your favor. If you target your ads to people who have no interest or ability to get into finance, or don’t have the means to hire your firm, you could earn site traffic that never turns into real clients.
More site traffic is a great goal to aim for, but only if it brings you business. Otherwise, it’s just empty numbers.
Target Audience is Not the Same as Target Market
In fact, they’re very different. Where the target audience is much narrower and focused on a specific group of individuals (single, professional women in their 30s), the target market is broader and refers to the whole group to whom a company wants to sell.
For example, a company that sells dentures and veneers would select elderly populations as their target market, while a toy company would select children.
Of course, there will always be some discrepancy in the target market (some teenagers need veneers, for example), but the goal is to define the characteristic that is the overwhelming majority of the group that you want to target.
Steps to Fine the Target Audience of a Finance Company
1. Conduct in-depth research.
We’re suckers for good research that explores all aspects of a target market. A great way for finance companies to perform good research is by using the SWOT method: analyzing the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of your business and the industry as a whole.
The SWOT method can reveal countless factors crucial in the buying process: demographics, industries, market trends, economic shifts, motivations, and competitors. You can discover this information by creating or going through your Google Analytics account.
Google Analytics shows you how visitors interact with your site and provides plenty of information about where they’re visiting from, how they accessed the site, which pages they visit, how long they stay there, and many other data sets.
2. Understand your customers’ purchase path and pain points.
It’s not enough to create a product and put it online. You’ve got to be sure, or at least very confident, that your product will solve your client’s problem. When you know what a potential client is worried about, you can place your product or brand in front of them as the answer.
For example, many people are concerned about their finances as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to put a strain on the economy. Being aware of this pain point can help you create content that introduces you as an expert who can provide real solutions.
Ask yourself how your company can provide a solution to your client’s problem, and consider the goals that your target audience wants to achieve. Answering these questions will help you make buyer personas. These are hypothetical customers that can help you frame content, represent different customer types who may be interested in your product, and create key messaging that’s targeted just for them.
3. Analyze what your competitors are doing.
You’ve heard the old saying, “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.” Nowhere is this more true than in defining the target audience for your finance company. Through competitive analysis, you can discover valuable insight into tactics that work for your competitors, as well as content to avoid.
Your company can invest in one or more online competitor analysis tools, two of the best being SEMRush and Ahrefs. These platforms allow you to track which keywords your competitors are ranking for, which can help you craft content around terms that you know will rank. You’ll get information about the number and type of backlinks that your competitors built to their site, which can lead you in the right direction to earn links that will boost your DR score. This is also how you keep tabs on competitors’ movement in rankings.
Taking the time to learn what works and what doesn’t work for competitors can help you craft unique content that you know clients are interested in and prevent making the mistakes that your competitors have.
4. Revise, monitor, repeat.
No marketing plan is perfect, and you’ll likely run into some sort of challenge along the way. Even with trustworthy data sets, you may find that you were a little off about your target audience.
However, that won’t be an issue if you continue to monitor and revise your marketing strategy accordingly. Maybe you realize that you should have been going after 40-year-olds instead of 30-year-olds, or maybe you notice that a blog you were sure would get lots of traffic has tanked and isn’t receiving any visitors, giving you an idea of what kind of content to publish in the future.
You can make a weekly or monthly schedule to monitor the success of your campaign. Visit Google Analytics, Google Search Console, SEMRush, and/or Ahrefs to determine how your content is performing with your target audience.
If it’s performing worse than you’d hoped in the set time, revise your strategy and check back later. If it’s getting tons of hits and bringing in clients, keep track of what may have made the campaign or piece of content so popular.
Revision is the name of the game for identifying and attracting your ideal audience.
EverSpark Can Help You Throughout the Process
We get it – client profiles and target audiences can be overwhelming to define. You’ll need to conduct some intense research, but your company might not have the resources or experience to do so.
Wherever you are on your journey to find the ideal client, EverSpark is here to help. We’re advanced marketers who value innovation and data, and we can help your business surpass competitors and gain qualified clients.
Call us or get in touch with us online to learn more about our financial SEO services.