Target Audience Research for Brands, Digital Products, and Services.

24 March 2023  —  ⏳ 15 min read
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By @estyhimself

Understanding and researching your target audience is critical when creating brands, digital products, and services. Without knowing who your target audience is, it is hard to provide products or services that meet their needs and make them happy.

There are several ways to determine your target audience. One way is to conduct market research and identify industry trends. Keeping an eye on your competitors and staying up-to-date on what is happening within your industry can help you learn what is important to your target audience.

Another way is to create personas, which are profiles of people who represent your ideal customer. Personas can help you better understand the needs, wants, and behaviours of your target audience. By understanding your target audience, you can tailor your products, services or campaigns to their needs.

Defining your Target Audience

Before you start creating your personas, it helps to define who your target audience isn’t. Doing this will prevent you from targeting people who are not interested in your products or services. Defining your target audience will also help you focus your marketing efforts and reduce costs.

To define your target audience, you can follow these steps:

🥽 Identify the problem your product or service solves: Your product or service offers a solution to a specific problem. Identify the problem and think about who is most likely to have this problem.

🧑‍🦰 Determine the demographics of your target audience: Consider factors such as age, gender, location, education level, and income to create a general profile of your target audience.

🧐 Analyze the psychographics of your target audience: Psychographics refer to the personality traits, values, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles of your target audience. You can gather this information by conducting surveys, focus groups, or observational studies.

😩 Identify the pain points of your target audience: Consider the challenges that your target audience faces and how your product or service can help them overcome these challenges.

📍 Determine where your target audience can be found: Consider where your target audience spends their time online and offline, including social media platforms, websites, events, and conferences. Using this information, you can develop a targeted marketing strategy to reach your target audience.

Defining your target audience requires research, analysis, and a deep understanding of your product or service. This way, you can tailor your marketing efforts to reach the right people, and develop a product or service that meets their needs and delivers a positive user experience.

Conducting Research

Research can be done via surveys, focus groups, interviews, and user testing. Your audience’s feedback will highlight pain points, their preferred methods of communication, and what motivates them. It can also provide you with data to validate your assumptions about user needs and preferences.

User research is a process of gathering qualitative and quantitative data on users to better understand their wants, needs, and behaviours. User research can be conducted in several ways, including surveys, focus groups, interviews, and user testing.

We’ve recently done some work for a local business in the food industry. They were launching 2 lines of products and they wanted to understand how their target audience would react to the potential brand names and proposals they bring into an already saturated market of some well-established brands. We (Neziak) help them conduct several surveys, focus groups and interviews in order to understand how their audience reacted to potential brand names and price options among other things.


Here’s how you can go about user research using these methods:


Surveys are an easy and effective way to gather quantitative data on user preferences and behaviours. Here are some tips on how to conduct successful surveys:

  • Determine the survey’s purpose and create specific, focused questions.
  • Keep the survey short (less than 10 minutes) and easy to navigate.
  • Offer an incentive for completing the survey.
  • Use tools like SurveyMonkey or Google Forms to collect survey data.
  • Analyze the survey data using statistical tools to gain insights into user behaviour and preferences.


Focus groups

Focus groups are an excellent way to gather qualitative data on user preferences, attitudes, and behaviours. Here are some tips on how to conduct effective focus groups:

  • Identify a representative sample of potential users to participate in the focus groups.
  • Create specific, open-ended questions to spark discussion.
  • Keep the focus group size small (4-8 participants) and manageable.
  • Conduct the focus group in a quiet, comfortable setting.
  • Use a moderator to guide the discussion and keep it on track.
  • Capture the session using audio or video recording.
  • Analyze the focus group data to gain insights into user pain points and preferences.
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Customer or User Interviews

A great way to gather qualitative data on user experiences, preferences, and behaviours. Here are some tips on conducting user interviews:

  • Identify a representative sample of potential users to participate in the interviews.
  • Prepare a list of open-ended questions to ask the participants.
  • Conduct the interviews in a quiet, private setting.
  • Listen actively to the users’ responses to gain insights into their needs, preferences, and behaviours.
  • Capture the session using audio or video recording.
  • Analyze the interview data to identify user pain points and preferences.


User testing

User testing is an essential part of the user research process, as it allows you to observe how users interact with your product or service. Here are some tips on conducting user testing:

  • Define clear objectives and tasks for the user testing session.
  • Create a prototype or mock-up of your product or service to test.
  • Identify a representative sample of users to participate in the testing.
  • Provide clear instructions and guidance to the users during the testing process.
  • Observe and take notes on how users interact with your product or service.
  • Analyze the user testing data to identify pain points and areas for improvement.

By using these user research methods, you can gain a deeper understanding of your users’ needs and preferences, which can help you design products and services that better meet their needs and deliver a better user experience.

Creating Personas

Creating personas helps you create a detailed picture of your ideal customer, and it is an essential way to ensure your business meets its target audience’s needs. To create personas, conduct research into your existing customers and your market to understand their demographic and psychographic characteristics. These typically include age, gender, education level, income, lifestyles, interests, and values.

Personas should be representative of a group of consumers rather than based on just one individual. Giving each persona a name and photo may make it easier to visualise them as a real person with distinct behaviours, needs, and goals.

A useful free tool to get started quickly is Hubspot’s persona creation tool.

Always remember…

It is essential to continuously revise and update your personas to reflect changes in your target audience’s behaviour or market trends. This will ensure your business stays ahead of the competition and continues to meet the ever-changing needs of your audience.

Now, how do I get them to see me?

After defining your target audience and creating personas, the next step is to reach your target audience through various channels. Social media is an effective tool for businesses to reach their target audience. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can be used to communicate important messages and engage with your audience.

There are several ways you can get your target audience to be aware of your product or service and ultimately turn them into clients. Here are some effective strategies:

Utilize social media: Create social media profiles for your business and build an active following through regular posts, engaging content, and promotions. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn can be great channels for driving traffic to your website and increasing brand awareness.

Offer free trials or demos: Offering potential customers a free trial or demo of your product or service can be an effective way to win their trust and encourage them to become paying clients.

Build a content marketing strategy: Creating high-quality blog posts, videos, and other valuable content can help position your business as an industry leader and drive traffic to your website.

Attend trade shows and events: Participating in relevant trade shows and events can help you reach new audiences and make valuable connections with potential clients.

Use targeted advertising: Consider using targeted ads on social media or search engines to reach your desired audience based on demographics, interests, and behaviour.

Leverage email marketing: Use email marketing to stay in touch with potential clients, offer special promotions and keep them informed about new products or services.

Develop referral programs: Build referral programs that incentivize current customers to spread the word about your business to their friends and family, which can be a powerful way to generate leads and new clients.

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Also would be key to consider…

Partnerships with influencers or organisations can also help businesses reach their target audience. Collaborating with influencers can help increase brand recognition and drive traffic to a business’s website or physical store.

To achieve this kind of partnership, you need to identify influencers whose values and audience demographics align with your business. You also need to negotiate the terms and compensation of the partnership while developing creative campaigns that showcase your product or service effectively. It’s essential to monitor the results of the partnership and refine future campaigns based on the feedback received. While partnering with an influencer can produce excellent results, you must ensure they align with your brand’s values and resonate with your target audience genuinely. With a good influencer fit, your business can grow through increased brand awareness and client acquisition.

However, it’s essential to ensure that the influencer you choose aligns with your brand values and mission. In other words, their followers and engagement should resonate with your business or product in a genuine way to get actual results. Ensure you also review their followers’ demographics and data thoroughly before partnering, to evaluate the potential benefits. By utilizing these strategies and continually refining your approach, you can effectively increase your brand awareness, attract new clients, and grow your business.

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How little things can change the game

Here is a quick example of how understanding your demographic can help your business.

When it comes to choosing their favourite restaurants or places to visit, Gen Z has a strong affinity for unique and aesthetically pleasing spaces. Due to the rise of social media, the 📸 “instagramable” effect has become an important consideration for many young consumers.

Restaurants and places with visually appealing decor or features offer a great opportunity for people to share photos and videos on social media. Therefore, having a nice wall or corner designed specifically for people to take photos can often bring a highly enthusiastic response from this demographic.

Gen Z and millennials love sharing their experiences with their friends and followers, who are often searching for inspiration and new places to visit. Hence, a visually pleasing space, packaging and visual design are more likely to be shared on social media, getting more exposure and potentially bringing in more customers.

To Summarize

Understanding and researching your target audience is critical when creating brands, digital products, and services. Conducting market research, creating personas, and continuously revising and updating them is essential.

Identifying who your target audience isn’t and conducting interviews to validate user needs and preferences is also important.

By keeping your target audience in mind, businesses can create experiences and products that meet their specific needs and desires, increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty.

If you love this blog, we have tons more here! ❤️

About the author

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Esteban Garcia Romero

AKA @estyhimself

The 🇳🇿 New Zealand-based 📱product designer, 🎨 graphic artist & 🏔️ adventure seeker from 🇨🇴 Colombia. Esty is the product design lead for the data science company Parrot Analytics. He’s also the director of Neziak Design Studio and artist & curator for Neziak Creative Collective.

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