In both my free eBooks (3 pillars to successful marketing / 5 pillars to marketing a coaching business) I talk about an experience I had when buying a Laptop in Curry’s / PC World. It’s an experience I’m sure i share with many of you.

Now I’m not saying there is anything wrong with Curry’s / PC World or their staff, but when i tried to buy a laptop the sales people overwhelmed me with an abundance of fancy features, specifications, and bells and whistles of various ranges of laptops they had on sale…

Although they were obviously very knowledgeable on the products themselves, you know what they didn’t ask me? My purpose for buying the laptop.

I couldn’t have cared less as to whether the laptop had voice activated sonar capabilities or not. I wanted a Laptop that would be suitable for travelling, and making presentations for work!

The sales people just didn’t understand my needs and wants as a customer.

I’m going to take it a little further in this article and propose that not only do some businesses not understand the explicit wants and needs their customers have (necessary information to sell successfully) but a lot of the time (more often then I’d like to admit) they have know idea on who their dream / ideal customer actually is!

Why is it important to know who your dream / ideal customers are?

Because how can you possibly sell and market a product or service to someone you know nothing about? You will more than likely bore them, or worse, irritate them with a sales and marketing message that they couldn’t care less about.

What kind of information do you need to know about your customers?

  • The kind of websites they visit online
  • Their social media usage such as whether they click on Facebook ads or interact with posts
  • Their age range
  • Their gender
  • Their geographical location
  • Their job titles
  • Etc…

If you knew all of this information about your ideal / dream customer, how easy would that make advertising and sales? You could literally tailor every piece of marketing and sales material to speak their language and engage with them on a personal level.

THAT is the core of effective marketing and sales.

So how do you actually go about defining your dream / ideal customer?

There are many ways you can profile a customer base, but in this article i’m going to talk about just one – Facebook Audience Insights.

What is Facebook Audience Insights?

Facebook Audience Insights is a tool available in the Ad Manager section of your Facebook profile. It is a way to view data on a particular group of people according to the information they publish on their Facebook profiles, and the information Facebook collects on the way that they use Facebook and interact with other users.

You can use Audience Insights to view all sorts of information about a group of people such as their Age, Gender, Job Title, Location, the kind of Pages they like, how often they like, share, comment on posts, click advertisements, plus much much more.

How to use Audience Insights to profile a competitor’s audience.

In order to use Audience Insights to define who your customers actually are, you need a group of people who match their description to actually enter into the Audience Insights tool.

Where do you find a group of your customers to profile?

  • Email addresses
  • People who like your businesses Facebook Page
  • Competitors

In this article, I’m going to show you how to profile a competitor’s audience.

How to profile a competitor’s audience using Facebook Audience Insights.

The first thing you need to do is head to Ads Manager in Facebook.

Ads Manager

Next up, you want to click on Tools on the top menu bar, and choose Audience Insights.

Audience Insights

You are then given three options:

  • Everyone on Facebook – view data on Everyone on Facebook (what we’ll be using in this example)
  • People connected to your page – view data on people connected to your Businesses Facebook Page
  • Custom Audience – View data on Website Visitors, Customer Email Lists, and other pre-determined Audience Groups

For this example, choose Everyone On Facebook.

Everyone on Facebook

I’m going to just look at data on people in the UK, but you can put any location relevant to your business.

United Kingdom

Now, the way that you can view data on a competitor’s audience (and therefore on people who could potentially be your customers) you need to take your attention to the ‘Interests’ tab.

Interests

I’m going to imagine for a minute that i own a small gym in the UK. Now a huge competitor of mine would be David Lloyd Leisure.

So I’m going to type David Lloyd Leisure into interests to view details on their audience, and therefore information on people who fit my target audience (people who are interested in fitness and gyms).

Here’s what I’ve found out:

David Lloyd Leisure 1

David Lloyd Leisure 2

David Lloyd Leisure 3

David Lloyd Leisure 4

David Lloyd Leisure 5

I see that my target audience are also interested in MuscleFood & Tough Mudder UK. I could now approach these companies to see if we could create a partnership as we have an audience in common and could cross market each others services.

I can also see that the majority of my customer base are between 25 and 44. I can now make sure any advertisements i create are more focused to this age range.

Things to look out for

The only caveat to researching competitors this way is that you have to use a competitor that has a  Large and Active audience on Facebook.

If you are using a competitor that has an Audience of under 1000 people, Facebook won’t display the data because the data would be too specific to individuals in that group, and therefore be an intrusion of privacy.

Also, i’ve found that even if companies have a large following on Facebook, they still won’t show up as an ‘Interest’ in audience insights unless they have an active audience on Facebook (people are regularly talking about them, sharing their posts etc).

All in all though, Audience Insights can give you an incredible amount of useful data on your customers that is invaluable for marketing and selling your services and products.

Audience Insights is just one of many ways to profile your customers

There are many of ways to use Audience Insights other than the method described above including profiling your Email List, Website Visitors, and Facebook Page Audience. There are also other ways to profile your audience outside of Audience Insights, and when creating a marketing and sales plan for your business, i highly recommend using all of the tools at your disposal to create a clear as possible picture of your target customer.

If you would like to know how to use a multitude of tools to put together a solid marketing and sales plan for your business, get in touch today for a free chat.

Ben
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Ben

Digital Marketing Strategist at Ben Webb Marketing
Ben helps Entrepreneurs, Coaches, Creatives and Local Businesses market and sell their products and services successfully online. Certified Trainer of NLP (Neuro Lingusitic Programming), Musician, Digital Marketing Specialist.
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