What Is Intended Audience and How Do You Find Yours?

Adele Streissguth
Lora Lynn Fanning
Published: Jan 23, 2024
Last Updated:
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All marketers know the importance of finding the right audience. But some marketing teams struggle with understanding the difference between a target audience and an intended audience, which can make all the difference in achieving successful marketing. In fact, when you successfully market to your intended audience, you have a better chance of converting a potential audience into regular customers. Fortunately, finding your intended audience only takes a few steps. 

Intended Audience vs Target Audience: Know the Difference

Before getting into the "how" in developing your intended audience strategy, it's essential to understand why it's different from marketing to your target audience. While some use the terms interchangeably, they have important differences. 

Target markets are the wide audiences you aim to reach with your marketing campaigns. The main aspect of customers here is those who are interested in your products or services. They are based on audience demographics, product usage patterns, buying behaviors or other similar factors. On the other hand, your intended audience is a smaller piece of the target group full of ideal customers who would benefit from or be interested in what you are offering. These are the people you expect to hit "add to cart" 

Your target consumers usually guide your overall approach to marketing campaigns. However, marketing to your intended audience allows for more precision and personalization when you create messaging and campaigns. 

4 Steps To Find Audiences Intended for Products or Services

Now that you know what your intended audience is, let's break down how to find your intended audience. 

1. Identify the Purpose of Your Product or Service

To find your market, first, re-examine your products and/or services. Ask yourself: what specific problems do they solve? Or, what audience needs does it fulfill? By pinpointing your audience's interest, you can better outline your audience profile

For example, if you're creating a productivity app, your intended audience might be a busy business owner or professional. They may need a solution for managing their time and tasks efficiently throughout the day. Understanding the purpose of your products and/or services helps you create more audience-appropriate marketing efforts and, by extension, more sales. 

2. Make a List of All Important Features

Now, it's time to consider what features or attributes set your products and services apart. Is it cutting-edge technology? Eco-friendly materials? Unique capabilities that no other competitor uses? By getting very specific about what makes your offerings unique, you can make more informed decisions about what type of marketing to undergo.

Once you've jotted down a few key features, match each product description with the characteristics of your intended audience. Say, for instance, your product offers advanced data encryption for cybersecurity. Your intended audience may include individuals who prioritize data security in their digital interactions. This step refines your focus, ensuring that your marketing efforts align with the aspects of your customers that matter most. 

3. Define the Price Range at Which You Will Sell

The pricing of your product or service plays a big role in attracting your intended audience. After all, different price points appeal to different demographics. Luxury items, for instance, cater to those with higher income levels, while budget-friendly options target a more economical consumer base.

Clearly defining your price range not only positions your product in the market but also narrows down the pool of potential customers. So, if your product is in the luxury category, your intended audience will likely consist of individuals who value quality and are willing to invest in a superior experience.

4. Research Your Competitors’ Offerings and Audiences

Lastly, understanding your competitors is essential to identifying your intended audience. Analyze the products or services your competitors offer and the audiences they target. Look for gaps or unexplored segments in the market that align with what your offering brings to the table.

By researching your competitors, you gain insights into the preferences and behaviors of potential customers. This knowledge allows you to tailor your marketing messages to address the specific needs of your intended audience.

What Happens if You Don’t Identify Your Intended Audience?

Not properly identifying your intended audience can hurt your marketing efforts and negatively affect your overall business success. Without a clear understanding of who your product or service is designed for, your messaging becomes generic and can end up in the hands of unintended audiences. Moreover, you risk wasting resources on campaigns that don't resonate with the right people. On a broader scale, this can lead to inefficient allocation of marketing budgets. 

In the end, precise targeting is a key driver of success. By not defining your intended audience, you miss the opportunity to connect with individuals genuinely interested in what you offer and hinder your growth potential. 

How Can This Type of Audience Feed Your Marketing Efforts?

When you tailor your marketing efforts to a specific audience, you benefit from:

  • Relevance and Personalization: When you know your audience, you can create content and messages that resonate with their needs, preferences and pain points. As a result, you're more likely to capture their attention and engagement.
  • Efficient Resource Allocation: With the right intended audience targeting, you can allocate your resources more efficiently. This includes budgeting for advertising, selecting appropriate channels and crafting content that speaks directly to your audience's interests.
  • Increased Conversion Rates: When your marketing messages align with the interests of your intended audience, the likelihood of converting leads into customers is bound to increase. A focused approach means that your product or service appears as a solution to the specific problems your audience is looking to solve.
  • Brand Loyalty and Advocacy: Understanding your audience enables a deeper connection between your brand and your customers. This connection can lead to increased brand loyalty. Satisfied customers become advocates who share their positive experiences with others.

Remember that identifying your intended audience is not a one-time task but an ongoing effort. Market dynamics shift, and brand demographics change. Regularly keeping your intended audience in mind is key to continued success. You'll make more accurate decisions about your marketing efforts, setting the stage for long-term success. 


How can you measure the effectiveness of targeting your intended audience?

You can measure the effectiveness through increased engagement rates, higher conversion rates, and improved customer feedback. Use analytics tools to track specific metrics like click-through rates and time spent on page.

Can the intended audience change over time, and how should a company adapt?

Of course, they are people, after all. Your intended audience can evolve due to trends, consumer behavior changes, or new product developments. You should regularly conduct market research, gather customer feedback, and monitor industry trends to adapt your content strategy regularly.

Are there any risks associated with focusing too narrowly on an intended audience?

The key is to be flexible. If your focus is too narrow and your intended audience is too niche, it can lead to missed opportunities in your broader market. It’s important to balance a targeted approach while keeping in mind the potential for shifts in your industry.

How do digital marketing tools help in identifying and targeting the intended audience?

Analytics platforms, CRM systems, and social media insights provide data on consumer behavior, preferences, and engagement. These tools help in segmenting the audience, tracking campaign performance, and refining marketing strategies to better target the intended audience.

What role does competitor analysis play in defining your intended audience?

Competitor analysis helps reveal any unmet needs of your potential customers that you can position more strongly in your product and messaging. By analyzing your competitors' target audiences, you can find opportunities to differentiate your own offerings.

What role does competitor analysis play in defining your intended audience?

Competitor analysis helps reveal any unmet needs of your potential customers that you can position more strongly in your product and messaging. By analyzing your competitors' target audiences, you can find opportunities to differentiate your own offerings.

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