How to Define Your Brand’s Target Audience

How to Define Your Brand’s Target Audience
4 minutes read. June 27th, 2019.

What’s the point?

Identifying a target audience will assist you in pinpointing your brand’s most effective methods of communication. As a result, you can then engage and build relationships with your target audience in the most relevant way.

Opting for a target audience of ‘everyone’ is a fairly sure-fire way for your brand to end up on the scrapheap. On the flipside, establishing as deep an understanding as possible of a specific market will help you to understand why people make the choices they do. The knock-on effect of all of this is that it can help you to identify your unique selling point (what gives you the edge over your competitors). The better your USP is, the more you’ll connect with your intended target audience and set your brand apart from its competitors. Rinse, repeat, and take over the world… sort of.

How to define your target audience

Determining your target audience is not just a case of identifying demographic and geographic information such as age, gender and location – you also need to understand people’s interests, values and aspirations (known as psychographics). By the same token, it’s also important to identify what your potential customers don’t like – this helps you to understand which potential pitfalls to avoid.

A good place to start is to create a list of criteria containing a mix of demographic and geographic information – you can use the information you collect to generate a psychographic audience profile. Demographic and geographic factors include (but are not limited to):

  • Age range
  • Gender
  • Location (and nationality)
  • Language
  • Income
  • Industry
  • Relationship status
  • Family
  • Social media preferences

Understanding Psychographics

Having established a list of demographic and geographic criteria, it’s time to look at behavioural characteristics. Ask yourself: what is your audience’s personality like? What are their needs, expectations and aspirations? What problems do they encounter on a day-to-day basis? How much do they have to spend and what are their buying habits? Try to see the world from their point of view and deduce how your brand can make their life easier.

To really tap into your target audience, it’s important to try to build a welcoming, engaging community that people will feel a part of. Gaining a full psychographic profile of your audience will help you to create that community atmosphere. Interact with audiences – communicate and learn from them either directly, over social media or via analytics tools, which provide information on the type of person that is engaging with your brand.

An Existing Example

If you’re struggling to get your head round things, it can’t hurt to take a look at existing examples of target markets. In this case, let’s take a look at Swedish furniture giant IKEA.

The company giant pitches itself at:

  • Mid-20s and older, both male and female
  • Spread internationally across the globe, in urban locations
  • Students and professionals
  • Working and middle-class families
    The company uses this information to pinpoints the needs of the people it is pitching to. As a result, IKEA can further characterise its audience based upon:

Personality: Easy-going, money-conscious, sensible

Needs and expectations: Cost-friendly solutions, long-term quality, easy and stress-free assembly, high visual appeal

Armed with a wealth of target market information, IKEA can then:

  • Ensure marketing messages and tone of voice are used in a way that resonates with customers on a deep level
  • Deploy campaigns across the right channels in order to reach the brand’s intended audience quicker and more efficiently
  • Identify how the brand can position itself to differentiate from competitors through its USP
  • Increase loyalty through engagement with long-term customers
  • Develop better products and services by forming an understanding of exactly what customers are looking for
    Examples present us with a great way to get more out of audience profiling, which is exactly why you should also take a look at what your brand’s competitors are doing. Not only might you identify a whole new market that you were previously unaware of, but you may also spot something you can offer customers that other brands simply don’t.


Identifying your target audience is not a case of guesswork – it’s an informed process which will help you to create brand impact and connect with customers. Your brand identity is not for you – it’s for your target audience. Keep that in mind and you’ll be well on the way to hitting the bullseye.

Need help pinpointing your target audience? Speak to our team today.

Spread the word, share the love, pass it on. If you like this article, feel free to share using the handy link below.

Wanna get in touch?

How to Define Your Brand’s Target Audience

Paul Hough

Creative Director

Get in touch with me