How to Design for Your Target Audience
If you are marketing a business, ministry, or organization, you have undoubtedly heard many times that you must know your audience thoroughly. It is essential that you reach your target audience with the correct message, and this only comes through research and executing a powerful, meaning-filled strategy.
Every day, your audience is bombarded with subtle messages and ideas which aid them in making subconscious opinions and judgments about certain brands—including yours. And if you are planning to launch a creative campaign, your designs must be on point with your target audience, else you risk the possibility of losing them altogether. Second chances are rare.
If you want your creative campaign to resonate with, and ultimately motivate, your target audience, you must first find out who they are. You can gather data by many routes, but website and social media analytics are very effective. Find out your competition and analyze your product or service. Select specific demographics to target.
When you have established your target audience, and you feel confident that you have learned everything you can about them, then it is time to begin designing.
Designing for a target audience can be tricky at first, especially when you have mounds of data from which to draw. It is at this critical point where everything must come together to ensure you communicate your brand message clearly, effectively, and in a compelling manner. Here are some tips to keep in mind to help you focus your design for a particular target audience:
- Design for the audience and not your personal preferences. It is easy to run with what is familiar and appealing to your tastes, but what you prefer may not be congruent with your audience.
- Based on the data you have gathered, tailor your design to appeal to their interests. Use certain color palettes, typography, images, etc., in a way that aligns with your demographic.
- If, through your research, you discover two distinctly different target audiences, aim for the middle. Find a common denominator between the two groups and form your design around a clear message about your product or service.
- Test your design internally and externally. Ensure that your design is relatable to your audience and that your message about your product or service is easily understood. Test your design with your peers and colleagues, and then try testing it with your target audience through social media or email A/B testing to see how they respond.
- Analyze your results. Retool as needed. Release your design to the world!
As stated previously, designing for a particular audience can be tricky. The best success comes from a well-researched and executed strategy. It takes practice, but once you have your first taste of a successful campaign, you should feel confident in being able to set clear goals and create a winning strategy with amazing designs you can be proud of that will make a lasting impression on your audience.
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