Knowing your Audience

Knowing Your Audience

Recently, I was working on a presentation for a client who needed to explain a potential business enhancement to a group of doctors. He was unsettled with the order of the presentation, and my suggestion was that it could be structured like a pitch deck. Problem, solution, size, market, traction, financials, and an ask. His response to me was that his audience was not motivated by financials. We turned to the correlation of how this business expansion would serve patients, which was an excellent reminder that your audience comes first. In any presentation opportunity, it is critical to understand your audience’s motivations. Especially if you have an ask. No matter how compelling arguments are in areas closely related to and even benefiting your audience’s business, the truth is, if you don’t center the content around their key motivating factors, it won’t capture their attention. As I anxiously await to hear how the presentation went, I am reminded that the first marketing question we should always ask is, “Who?”.

Insight into the narrative

Understanding your audience is not just about the content of your presentation or pitch; it extends to the very tone and language you use. Awareness becomes your guiding principle. In my client’s case, the pivot from financials to the correlation of business expansion with patient care wasn’t just a strategic move but a reflection of understanding. It’s recognizing what matters most to your audience and aligning your narrative with those values.

Beyond the content, consider the format

The way information is presented is as crucial as the information itself. Some audiences might appreciate a detailed report, while others might prefer a simple infographic. For instance, if you’re communicating with doctors, they might respond better to visual aids, case studies, or concise summaries. Knowing your audience extends to understanding how they consume information.

Tailoring the ask

If your presentation includes a call to action or an ask, it needs to be framed in a way that resonates with your audience’s priorities. For doctors, it might not be about financial gains but rather the potential positive impact on patient outcomes, procedure improvements, or healthcare advancements. Align your request with their mission and goals.

Feedback and Adaptation

Understanding your audience is an ongoing process. Seek feedback, whether through direct communication or analytics. If possible, interact with your audience to gauge their responses. Are they engaging with your content? Do they find value in your presentations? Analyzing these responses can guide future interactions and help you refine your approach.

The evolving ‘who’

As your business or initiative progresses, your audience will also evolve. Keep a pulse on these changes. A strategy that worked for one audience might need adjustment for another. Regularly revisit your audience personas, conduct market research, and stay attuned to industry trends.

In conclusion, the question of ‘who’ is foundational in marketing and presentations. It’s not just about demographics; it’s about understanding your audience’s core motivations, values, and preferences. With this knowledge, you can craft messages that resonate, build connections, and drive meaningful engagement. As my client steps into that presentation room, I’m confident that the emphasis on ‘who’ will make all the difference.



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