To get noticed by people who are interested in what you’re offering you need to know where they hang out.

If you’re aiming to get into your local paper or maybe even the Nationals, you first need to explore their demographics.  Let me tell you a true story:

In a previous life I was a management trainer and HR consultant, living and working in Dubai.  One of my clients called me from, ironically, a very successful daily newspaper, “I need some help can you come in for a chat,” he said – let’s call him Imran.

“Sure,” I agreed and we set an appointment.

We sat down and I asked “How can I help you?”

Imran was, at that time, the production manager for the newspaper, “I’m looking for a No. 2,” he explained, “and I’m not getting any applications from our advertising.”

“Where are you advertising?” I asked.

“In the Telegraph?” he said.

“In the UK?  Why?”

“Because they have a massive distribution and I want to get someone who is well-qualified.”

Bear in mind this was in the days prior to social media and online job boards.

“Don’t you have any trade journals that are read by your industry?” I asked.

“Well, I get one, but they don’t carry job ads,” he replied.

“Have you asked them?  Maybe they would carry an ad, if you bought an advertising space?”

“Maybe,” he wasn’t convinced, “but they only have a circulation of about 3000, the Telegraph reaches millions – and not only in the UK.”

“How many of those millions that are looking at the Telegraph job ads are qualified as a production manager?”

“I don’t know.  They didn’t have that kind of demographics.”

“So how many of the people reading that print journal are likely to be qualified?”  I continued.

“Hmmm, yes, I see what you mean,” he agreed.  “But if they won’t take a job ad, what else can I do?”

“There must be other journals for the print industry,” I said.  “Have you checked in Wellings?”  That drew a blank look.  At that time Wellings was a directory of all publications worldwide, which was updated every year (now usurped by the internet) and I guessed that there might be a copy somewhere in the newspaper’s library.  A quick phone call confirmed that this was the case and I left Imran checking for relevant publications.

So what is the moral of this story?  Find the right audience and then go there and let them know about you.  That, of course, means that you need to know who your audience are, but that knowledge will underpin everything your business does, so it’s a valuable exercise to do in any case.

If you need help with nailing down your audience check out 7 simple steps to attract lots of lovely new customers.