hand reaching out to audience

If you read my blogs regularly, you’ll know that I bang on about ideal client profiles – and, at the risk of boring the pants off you, knowing who you’re trying to reach is essential to every marketing activity you do.

If you know your audience, reaching them becomes so much easier.  You know where they are active, what they read, what they watch and what their problems are.  That allows you to tick all their boxes and be the obvious choice when they know they need your kind of help.

So let’s look at your options.

Social media

It’s no coincidence that people who are successful on social media are known as influencers.  It’s a way to put you in front of people and impress them with your knowledge and shared expertise, your authority in your industry and your willingness to help others.  A carefully crafted campaign on the platform where your target audience hang out can be powerful.

It’s probably not a resource to be your only marketing, but it should not be ignored.

Broadcast and print media

Getting your name and your business into the media is a great way to become visible and to get known as an expert.  However, you need to be sure that you’re choosing the right media – the ones that your ideal clients are following.

If your audience are reading their industry journals, appearing in a national daily may not be very effective.  If you’re on local radio in the daytime when they’re not listening, it won’t help your marketing.


Ads are a whole article of their own!  They can be cheap and cheerful or quite expensive, so working your budget out first is essential.  There are plenty of publications who will offer you a deal to get you to place an ad, but is your audience reading these ads.

A £50 ad in a local magazine delivered door-to-door can work brilliantly for an electrician or a company that cleans gutters, but won’t work for a company that makes parts for car manufacturers.  So pick your publication carefully – and then invest in getting a professional to design your ad, so it’s attractive and clear.

Don’t fall into the trap of trying to stuff as much information as possible into a relatively small space.  The headline is the key to success – get that right and it will engage with your audience.  Make it easy for them to contact you.

Advertising can include TV, billboards, banners, sports sponsorship and more.  Think carefully about how advertising fits into your marketing campaign.

Direct marketing

This includes leaflets of all kinds whether they’re delivered by post or by hand.  Effectively they’re an ad that you can deliver directly to your target audience.

The same applies to leaflets as to ads – don’t stuff them with too much information.  Paper leaflets are better printed on one-side, or with the minimum of information on the reverse (maybe just your contact info).

Cards are better, these can be postcard size or bigger, and are harder for people to screw up and throw away, so are often kept around for longer.  You can put information onto both sides and the formats can be double sides or a folded document that has more substance.

Direct marketing also includes what is often known as ‘lumpy mail’.  Sending something in an envelope that creates a lump, is more likely to get opened – curiosity is a powerful thing!

People include branded items, like pans and coasters, but I’ve seen successful lumpy mail campaigns with teabags, biscuits, etc. and a clever message.

Email marketing

This can be very effective if you’re good at writing good subject lines to get the recipient to open the email and creating content that grabs their attention quickly.

Don’t try and send lots of email like this from your own email account, that’s the quickest way to get your email provider to shut your account down.  Instead use an online emarketing platform like Mailchimp, Aweber, Mailerlite or Constant Contact (there are dozens, do a bit of research).

An integrated campaign

You don’t have to choose one or another.  You can use more than one method to reach your target market, but you do need a strategy and a plan of action to ensure your chosen methods are congruent and successful.