[The Voice]: If you build it, he will come.
– Field of Dreams (1989)
Building an audience from scratch is no easy feat. It takes time, effort, and a well-thought-out strategy.
However, with the right approach, it’s possible to build a loyal following of people who are interested in what you have to offer and how they can be impacted from you.
In this article, I will cover everything you need to know about building an audience from scratch, from identifying your target audience to measuring success.
What’s An Audience Building
Audience building refers to the process of attracting and growing a group of people who are interested in your brand, product, or service. In digital marketing, audience building is a critical component of a successful marketing strategy.
Without an audience, your marketing efforts are unlikely to be effective.
How To Identify Your Target Audience
The first step in building an audience is to identify your target audience. This involves defining your ideal customer, conducting market research, and creating buyer personas.
1) Defining your ideal customer
To build an audience, you need to know who you’re trying to reach. This means defining your ideal customer based on factors such as age, gender, location, interests, and buying behavior.
Start by compiling information from your existing clients. If you are just starting, think of what’s the principal pain point your product or service solves.
2) Conducting market research
Market research involves gathering data on your target audience to better understand their needs, preferences, and behaviors. This can be done through surveys, focus groups, or analyzing social media analytics.
3) Creating buyer personas
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer. It includes information such as goals, pain points, challenges, and needs. Creating buyer personas can help you tailor your marketing efforts to your target audience.
“As in times past, success today is not so much about what you know; it’s about who you know. And the who is your platform.”
– Michael Hyatt, Platform
Free Template: Create your BUYER PERSONA
An interactive template to help you create your buyer persona, so you can better understand your customers, create targeted marketing strategies that resonate with your audience, improve your products and services, and optimize your sales funnels.
- Buyer Persona: Interactive Template
Strategies To Build An Audience From Scratch
There are several strategies you can use to build an audience. Here are some of the most effective ones:
1. Create Valuable Content That Helps Your Audience
Once you’ve identified your target audience, the next step is to create valuable content that resonates with them. Content can include blog posts, videos, social media posts, and more.
Content is what attracts and engages your audience. By providing valuable content, you establish yourself as an authority in your niche and build trust with your audience.
To stay organized and consistent with your content creation, we recommend you to create a content calendar. This can help you plan and schedule your content in advance, ensuring that you always have fresh content for your audience.
2. Leverage Social Media Platforms
Social media is a powerful tool for building an audience. By choosing the right platforms and developing a social media strategy, you can engage with your audience and build a loyal following.
A social media strategy outlines your goals and tactics for using social media to reach your target audience. Now, don’t forget that social media is a two-way conversation. To build an audience, it’s important to engage with your followers by responding to comments, and asking for feedback.
3. Build An Email List
Email marketing is a powerful tool for building and nurturing an audience.
It can help you build stronger relationships with your audience, increase brand awareness, and drive conversions. By collecting email addresses from your audience, you can create targeted email campaigns that provide value and build trust. The key of growth marketing is to personalize.
To collect email addresses, you need to offer something of value to your audience in exchange. This is known as a lead magnet, which can take the form of an e-book, white paper, free trial, or other valuable resource. Your lead magnet should be tailored to your audience’s needs and interests.
Once you have collected email addresses, it’s time to create an email marketing campaign. This can include a welcome email series, newsletters, product updates, and more. Be sure to segment your email list and create targeted campaigns that provide value to each segment.
4. Using SEO To Build Your Audience
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing your website to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).
SEO can help you reach a larger audience by increasing your visibility in search results. By optimizing your website for keywords and user experience, you can attract more organic traffic and build your brand’s reputation.
The first step is to conduct a keyword research. We remind you that keyword research is the process of identifying the keywords and phrases that your audience is using to search for your products or services.
Use keyword research tools to identify relevant keywords and optimize your website content accordingly.
Besides, there are several on-page and off-page SEO tactics you can use to optimize your website for search engines. This includes optimizing your website’s meta titles and descriptions, creating high-quality content, and building backlinks from reputable sources.
5. Partnering With Influencers
Influencers can help you reach a larger audience, build trust, and increase engagement with your brand. By partnering with influencers who align with your brand values (that’s very important), you can tap into their audience and build your own following.
To find the right influencers, start by researching influencers in your industry who have a strong following and engagement rates. Look for influencers who share your brand values and have a loyal following.
Once you’ve identified potential influencers, reach out to them and propose a partnership. Be clear about your expectations and goals for the partnership, and work together to create content that resonates with both your audiences.
6. Paid Advertising To Build Your Audience And Drive Traffic To Your Website Or Social Media Channels
Paid advertising can help you reach a larger audience quickly and generate leads and conversions. By choosing the right advertising platform and creating effective ads, you can attract new customers and build your brand’s reputation.
There are several advertising platforms to choose from, including Google Ads, Facebook Ads, LinkedIn Ads, and more. Choose the platform that aligns with your audience and marketing goals.
To create effective ads, be sure to target the right audience, use attention-grabbing visuals and copy, and include a clear call to action. Continuously test and refine your ads to optimize performance.
The Glossier Case: Example Of Building An Audience
One example of a brand that successfully built a digital audience from scratch is Glossier, a beauty and skincare brand that was founded in 2014. Glossier’s founder, Emily Weiss, began building an audience through her personal blog, Into The Gloss, which she started in 2010.
Using Into The Gloss as a platform, Weiss shared her own beauty tips and product recommendations and interviewed other beauty experts. She also used the blog to gather feedback from readers and identify trends in the beauty industry.
In 2014, Weiss launched Glossier as a direct-to-consumer beauty brand. She leveraged the audience she had built through Into The Gloss to promote the new brand and generate buzz. Glossier’s early products were designed based on feedback from Into The Gloss readers, which helped to build trust and loyalty with the brand’s target audience.
Glossier’s success can be attributed to several key audience-building strategies that we’ve shared before.
- First, Weiss identified her target audience early on and used Into The Gloss to engage with them and gather feedback.
- Second, she created valuable content that resonated with her audience, which helped to establish her as an authority in the beauty industry.
- Third, she leveraged social media to promote Glossier and engage with her audience. Finally, she used customer feedback to create products that were tailored to her audience’s needs and preferences, which helped to build trust and loyalty with the brand.
Today, Glossier has a strong digital audience, with almost 3 million Instagram followers and a loyal customer base. The brand’s success is a testament to the power of audience building in digital marketing.
Building an audience from scratch can be a daunting task, but by following the above strategies, and continuously optimizing your approach, you can successfully build a loyal following and grow your brand.
Don’t forget that measuring the success of your audience building efforts is crucial to ensuring that you’re on the right track and making progress towards your goals.