How to choose target customer profiles for education industry?
For a product that involves lifelong community engagement and lifelong learning, how does one select the best customer profiles?
Competitor research is a good idea. For a new business, it’s more beneficial to spend time and energy in other peoples communities than trying to create something out of nothing. Start the research as if you know nothing about the niche at all, and work methodically. There are so many software tools to do competitor research. Some examples of the best software tools include:
Actually, there are dozens more. If you’re on a tight budget, you can start with the free ones that give an 80/20 of the data results you’re looking for. If you’re a person, company or organisation with financial resources then Ahrefs and Buzz Sumo are probably the best choices.
You create a spreadsheet of all of your competitors, locally and globally. If you’re a local business, you can ‘steal’ ideas from what works in the leading markets. Your spreadsheet can include keywords, top pages, topics, and social media pages.
Join other communities in your niche and see which are working, and which aren’t. Run social media adverts targetting your competitors’ followers and gather demographic data.
If you’re an individual, spend half of your time researching and infiltrating your competition. It might feel like a waste, but a bigger waste is spending months going in the wrong business direction. If you have a company, put a few people on this task.
I would first make a list of the benefits of your product/service. Make a list of competitors in the space and perform a competitive analysis to see how you can differentiate. Based on this information, make a list of potential keywords that your target audience will search for. Utilize these search words to perform social listening with general search, Talkwalker, Google alerts, etc. and start keeping track of who mentions these keywords, the context in which they’re used, etc.
By looking at the mentions you can start identifying potential customers, strategic partners, and more. Once you research these potential customers, you can start building out your personas. HubSpot has a fantastic tool to help walk you through this build out.
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