How well do you know the people you’re targeting?
And I mean really know them? Do you know why they’re signing up? Do you know why they’re buying? Do you know why they would click on your ad in the first place?
If you do, congratulations. You’re a genius.
But if you’re not 100% sure, you’re in for a rough ride. You’ll be left guessing what your target audience wants and what ad copy they respond well to. You’ll be left guessing what headlines get the most attention. And you’ll be left guessing whether or not your offer is good.
But if you know who your target audience is and are 100% sure of what they really want, you’ll create ad copy that gets amazing results.
If you want your online ads to convert really well, you need to know what your target audience wants, what they don’t want, and what’s preventing them from getting it. Only then can you create ads that resonate.
But isn’t that what demographic research is for?
Well, sort of. When you’re researching demographics, you’re researching who is likely to click your ads and sign up for your product or service.
But demographics only get you so far. If you really want to go the extra mile, you need to be looking for the psychographics of your audience.
Demographics tell you who you’re targeting, psychographics tell you why they’d buy. It tells you why they do what they do and it gives you an idea of what kind of lifestyle they have.
Psychographics can change a company’s approach to marketing quite radically. For example: Let’s say you live in the United Kingdom and you’re looking for a second-hand car.
You can go to a professional looking site like this:
Or you can browse this abomination:
The first example is targeting purely based on demographics, the second example turns the psychographic targeting to 11. Both can have the same demographic, but the way they approach that demographic is completely different.
Knowing you need psychographics is one thing, knowing how to get them is another. Let’s look at some ways you can figure out your audience’s psychographics.
Probably the most straightforward way of finding out your audience’s motivations is to interview your best clients and customers. You like them and they’ve spent money on you, so you want more of them.
Now, when you’re doing a customer interview, you have to dance around certain subjects a little. You can’t just ask what the ideal product would look like because people are pretty bad a figuring out what they want. But what they ARE good at, is knowing what they don’t want.
So instead of asking what the ideal product would look like, you can ask them what problems they’d like to remove from their lives. You can figure out the rest from there.
Some people don’t like competition, others think it’s great. You can learn a lot from the people you’re competing with. They have to do the same research you’re doing, so check if there’s anything you can use as well.
Specifically, you want to check what pain points they’re hitting and how they’re wording those pain points.
Feedback forms can range from surveys to customer service tickets. These customer feedback channels are gold if you use them correctly. People will tell you what their problem is and you can use that information to create a message that resonates.
The cool thing about reviews is that people straight up tell you what they like and don’t like. You can use this information to create ads that convert. It also gives you great insight into what type of language people use to describe your product.
For example, if you open up the British version of Amazon and search for wrenches, you’ll get a bunch of them as you might expect.
But when you read the reviews for some of them, you’ll notice that a lot of people outside of North America don’t call them wrenches, they call them spanners.
Now, why is this so important? A wrench is a wrench, right? Sure, but it can show people you’re not familiar with their situation – or that you just don’t care. Neither of those are good signs.
With testimonials, you already have a client or customer that likes what you do. So if you can figure what it is they like about your product or service, you can use that info to create Facebook ads that better fit your target audience.
A testimonial can show you the main selling points of your products or services. If customers emphasize how much they loved your speedy delivery, you might want to give that angle a go with your ads.
Often ignored as a source of valuable user insights, the comments on your blog can be useful when trying to learn more about your customers and what they want. You can get a ton of information out of it, from new blog post ideas, to ideas for product improvements, to suggestions for ad copy. If your customers talk, listen.
Here’s an example of how a blog comment could help you improve ad copy:
As you can see, one single blog comment can give you a lot of good insights into the mind of your customers.
And while one comment isn’t representative of your entire customer base, if you look through enough comments, you’ll start to see patterns emerge. And it’s these patterns that are going to make your ads winners.
Social groups are a highly underrated way of figuring out what your target audience wants. You’ve got a group of people talking to each other about what they’re looking for and what they want. So the best thing you can do is go to these groups and listen.
It’s messy and it requires quite a bit of time, but the info you get can make all the difference.
Knowing about psychographics is great, but it doesn’t matter if you can’t turn it into ad copy that converts. There are a couple of aspects you can focus on to write ad copy that converts.
As humans, we instinctively seek pleasure and try to avoid pain. In psychology, this is called the pleasure principle. What this means for marketing and advertising is that we’re always on the lookout for things that make our lives easier, more pleasurable, or less painful.
If you can show someone you’ve got a way to improve their life, you’re going to get their attention. Take this ad from Jobbatical, for example.
They’ve decided to focus on one of the dreams many young people have. Travel the world and earn money doing it. No one wants to spend their entire life in a cubicle.
Calling out someone’s worries or fears can be one of the most effective ways of writing ad copy. People want to avoid pain more than they want to achieve pleasure, so if you can tell them of a way to avoid pain, you’ve got a winner.
The key, however, is to be as specific as possible. Telling people they’re “losing out of money” isn’t nearly as powerful as telling them they’re “losing out on $1376 a month.”
It’s the specificity of that last statement that makes the ad interesting because, in order to come up with a number like that, you need to have a real story. (Well, you could just come up with a number, but that wouldn’t be ethical.)
By calling out roadblocks you show your audience you understand what they’re trying to do. If you do it properly, your audience gets the feeling you know them better than they do themselves.
One of the roadblocks of being on a diet, for example, is being able to resist having a quick snack. NatureBox knew this and created a Facebook ad that calls this out.te
As in the spanner example earlier in this article, using highly specific words can show your audience you know them well.
If you can speak the same language your audience does, you’ll have a much easier time building a good relationship with them, and you’ll have a much easier time selling your products.
Psychographics turn dry ad copy into copy that’s pulling emotional strings. It can be awkward at first but once you see it working in full effect, you’ll be wondering why you didn’t do it earlier.
But there’s one thing, though. Knowing your audiences demographics and psychographics is great, but if you communicate them in the wrong way, all your hard work will have been for nothing.
To solve that, I’ve created a copy checklist you can use to make sure all your ad copy is as powerful as it can be. You can check it out here.
About the author: Robin Geuens is a freelance content marketer who helps SaaS businesses write content that gets more traffic, subscribers, and leads.
WordStream’s guest authors are experts, entrepreneurs, and passionate writers in the online marketing community who bring diverse perspectives to our blog on a wide range of topics.
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