The Fastest Way to Under­stand Your Audience
January 23rd | 2018

With culture and behavior changing at an unprecedented pace, companies are under more pressure than ever to gather insights about how to connect with and understand their audience as fast as possible. And, unfortunately, if you really are experiencing an audience insight gap, you may not even know it. 

In a recent study commissioned by IBM, there was a massive perception gap between how well businesses thought they were doing in their marketing and their actual customers’ experiences. But there is a way to close this gap and increase marketing effectiveness by really understanding who you’re interacting with.

There are four steps you can take to begin shrink­ing the audi­ence under­stand­ing gap.

And when you do, you’ll be able to create the experiences and products that your customers are looking for.

1. Make audi­ence insight-gath­er­ing col­lab­o­ra­tive and immersive.

Collecting consumer insights in a bubble will never give you the full picture. It’s important to go on real-life audience-insight-gathering missions as a team to get first-hand insights and discuss what each of you sees. This approach will help you to connect with each other as well as the community around you.

2. Dis­rupt your team’s way of think­ing by break­ing out of your insight com­fort zone.

Chances are that if you’re not connecting, it’s time to change your approach. Commit to trying 1-2 new ways of gathering audience insights in the new year. Ethnographies, home visits, and focus groups aren't the only ways to get to know your audience; they're just the ones you're used to.

3. Get into your audience’s head —and space.

Identify a place your audience likes to go and spend time there interacting and observing. Immersing yourself in an experience which is meaningful to your audience can bring new context and understanding to their viewpoint on the world.

4. Cre­ate hypothe­ses about your audi­ence and then test them in real life.

Do you have a hunch that your audience has a growing passion for fitness? Go to a gym, fitness expo or athletic retailer to see if you can find your audience there.

We under­stand that it’s not easy to fit these insight-gath­er­ing excur­sions into an already hec­tic sched­ule. That’s why, for those look­ing to change their per­cep­tion quick­ly and see their audi­ences in new ways, we cre­at­ed Shift.

Shift is a collaborative endeavor designed to help you approach your problems from a new angle and give you immediate, tangible actions — all in one day.

Through hypothesis-building and in-the-field immersion, you will be challenged to look closer at the world around you, develop a stronger understanding of what’s happening, and authentically connect with your audience.

Ready to go on an audience field trip? Get in touch.