Basic marketing tells us that in order for someone to pay attention to a message, it has to be relevant to them. So how do you make your messages relevant? You get to know your target. You can scream “buy me, buy me” all you want, but when people are exposed to tons of ads a day, you won’t break through unless you strike a nerve with your intended audience.
Here at Midan, in order to develop communications for our clients that are relevant and attention- grabbing, we get to know the needs and wants of the target. We conduct primary research or review secondary research in order to understand how the product or service fits in the target’s life. To me, there is no better way get to know your target than to talk with them face to face. Even if it’s only five minutes in a grocery store, you can learn about who they are as people and what the product means to them. I discovered this firsthand when I conducted consumer intercepts for various clients’ meat brands.
When getting to know a target, the most important question I try to answer is, “What problem does my product or service solve for the target beyond a simple functional benefit?” Great creative thought starters that lead to a compelling message usually lie beyond the functional benefit. If you don’t uncover those unexpected insights that connect the target with the product, often times the creative team is not set up for success. If the creative team doesn’t have those connections, their message will be too broad and won’t directly speak to the target.
A great example of this concept happened when we developed a promotion for Tyson’s Chairman’s Reserve® Premium Meats brand. We conducted in-store interviews and discovered that our core meat-loving target would drive pretty far out of their way to go to a store they knew had better meat. They weren’t willing to settle for what was convenient. They loved higher quality meat and made getting it a priority. This insight led our creative team to the “Never Settle” campaign, which reminded consumers that they shouldn’t ever settle when it comes to the premium beef and pork they are putting on their table.
Digging a little deeper and really connecting with our target audience uncovered a way for us to develop strong creative with spot-on messaging. So even if you think you already know your target, take the time to excavate beyond the surface. You are likely to expose the kind of insights that can lead to a creative gold mine.