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I once heard someone say: “Know who you are talking to before you open your mouth.” As a content creator, never has that statement sounded so. If you do not know who you are trying to have an impact on, what are you making content for? This is why having an audience profile that is very well-targeting is so important.
If you are scratching your head at the words “audience profile” then don’t worry, because you are not alone.
Matter of fact, creating audience profiles is by far one of the most important aspects that content creators tend to neglect completely.
And by neglect, I mean they don’t even think to create one.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is NOT creating an audience profile or audience avatar.
So in this article, I am going to tell you everything you need to know about creating them (with a 5-step guide), plus you can even get a free template to get you started.
What Is An Audience Profile?
The name might sound complex but it is actually quite simple. Audience profiles are fake characters that you create that embody what and who your perfect audience is.
Basically, it is make-believe!
These also go by the name audience avatar, customer avatar, and customer profile.
Different words, same meaning.
Creating an audience profile will tell you who you are targeting, what they want, how they look, what they like, and anything else that you want to know.
You write everything that embodies who your ideal target audience is.
You can create several audience profiles if you like or just one. The choice is yours.
For example, I have two major profiles:
- 1 for blogging.
- 1 for youtube.
And then within my Youtube audience profile, I have sub-profiles. Like gamers, cooking channels, small YouTubers, etc.
I promise, it will all look easier once you see the process.
Who Are Audience Profiles For?
If you think that profiles are just for business owners, major companies, or marketers, then you have another thing coming.
Mark my words:
Audience profiles are for anyone who has any kind of content or product that they would like other people to find, see, and/or buy.
Meaning whether you have a youtube channel, an affiliate marketing business, a website, or a store; you should have an audience profile set up.
Why You Need An Audience Profile
Have you ever stopped to think: Do I really know my audience?
Not just their age, nationality, and interest. But really find out what motivates them to do what they do?
You know better than anyone who your product or content is for. But as creators, we often forget to keep our audience in mind and go a little deeper.
So having your ideal audience laid out in front of you is going to make planning your content and gauging your results a lot easier for you.
For example, are you making content for 40-year-old women in middle America?
Or are you creating content for middle-aged women, in suburban areas who have kids and are stay-at-home moms, who would like to start their own online business?
As you can tell, there is a lot more detail in the latter.
Having this information down is what will give you the edge you need to make people want to engage with your content.
Look at the following blog titles:
How to Blog When You Have Kids.
How to Write a Full Blogpost During Naptime.
Which one do you think is a more targeted headline?
If you said the first one, then you might want to re-read the last few paragraphs.
Creating an Audience Profile: Quick 5-Step Guide
Once you have read (and maybe even re-read) the first few paragraphs, you are now ready to start creating your own profile.
I will be giving you a template that you can use after this 5-step process to start building your own profile.
However, I highly recommend that you just use it as a skeleton and tweak it as much as you can to fit your needs.
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to audience profiles.
Now here is what you need to do.
Step 1: Do Some Brainstorming
Get out a pen and notepad or open a word document and start brainstorming what you think that your ideal audience looks like.
I mean everything from age to what they drive to what they had for breakfast this morning.
Everything that you think will help you better understand who they are. Everything that will help you make content that is more optimized to them.
Write it down.
Don’t worry about there being a flow or any logic to it, just focus on getting everything down.
We will organize your thoughts in the next step.
Step 2: Start to Map Out What Your Profile Looks Like
Once you have everything, we are going to start to map it out. This is where you can use the template that I am going to provide if you want to.
The first important thing is that you give your profile a name.
I don’t mean “profile 1”…No.
I mean an actual human name. You need to see your profile as an actual person because your audience is full of human beings.
Once you give it a name, write their age, gender, where they live, if they work, and their level of education.
This is the basics of any audience profile. Some people even chose to keep it broad and stop there. But I don’t recommend this.
If you really want to scale, go deeper.
Do it once and do it right.
Step 3: Fill In The Blanks
Go back to your brainstorming sheet and start separating things into categories.
For example interest, job experience, hobbies, feelings, family and/or living situation, beliefs, goals, motivations, etc.
Hopefully, you thought about some of these things when you were brainstorming. If not, you can just add the categories and work with them.
Not everything is needed for everyone. If you are a gamer, maybe beliefs and motivation are not important aspects for your audience.
I won’t help you to create targeted content in any way.
Unless you are in a special niche of religious gamers (which actually sounds like a cool idea)!
So only focus on things that will actually be necessary for you.
Step 4: Put Yourself In Their Shoes
Put yourself in their shoes and ask:
What do they need from me?
This is where you need to put yourself in the mind of your audience and look at their experiences.
Why would they like to buy your product, watch your video, or read your article?
What are they looking to achieve?
This is where the categories like goals and motivation can come in.
For example, maybe they want to learn how to build a website? Or maybe they want to find the best birthday gift for their husband?
Find out what motivated them to purchase or to search and what their end goal is.
If you know this, then you will be able to know how you can help them.
Step 5: Your Promise To Them
Now that you have laid all of this down, you can get out of your audience’s head and back to your own.
Look at everything that you have mapped out and ask yourself:
What are my promises to them?
What are you going to do to be able to help them? How are you the solution that they need? What are you going to do to stand out from the crowd and get them to pay attention?
How are you going to make them feel like your content was tailor-made for them?
This is where you need to figure out what kind of content you want to make and what response you want to get.
Is it to make people laugh? Or is it to make people purchase something from you?
Maybe it is just to make sure that you give helpful information so that people will read all the way through your blog post.
Whatever you decide that it is, make it your motto and always keep it in the back of your mind when you are planning your content.
This is what will get you to write targeted content.
Audience Profile Template
As promised, here is the template that you can use to start building your own audience profile. It is on a Google Drive document that you can copy or save as you wish.
Do whatever you want with it. I myself have been inspired by many different people and have changed many templates over the past few years.
Analyze Your Results
Once your profile is done, test it out for a few months. See if it changes how you create, or how you go about marketing your business.
The good thing is that none of this is set in stone.
You can always tweak it and change it once you get more and more people engaging with you.
Usually, you will also be able to gather more information from places like Google Analytics and incorporate some of the information that you get into your audience profiles.
You will start to see trends and patterns that will help you see what works, and what doesn’t.
It is a lot easier to write an audience profile now and change it in the future.
Making an audience profile is one of the best things that you can do for your online presence. This is one of those things that are not for your audience, but for yourself.
The focus is on how YOU can better understand what YOUR audience needs.
That is the core to targeting an audience.
If you analyze everything that you have learned today, you can see that creating an audience profile can be summed up into a few questions:
- who are they?
- what do they want?
- how do they think?
- what motivates them?
- how can you help them?
Being vague may be a nice place to start, but the real magic happens when you dive deeper.
When you have everything laid out, you will find that you will be able to create content quicker, make more attention-grabbing headlines, and even get more contacts on your email list.
Which you can actually do completely for free if you didn’t know.
You will be amazed at the growth that will come from this process.