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Researching Interests for a 2021 Audience

Paid Social

Working on creating an interest-based audience for your product or service? Have you exhausted Audiences and Audience Insights? Feeling a little uninspired or not sure where to start? We’ve gathered some methods to help kickstart your Interest hunt that might not be the most obvious. We are targeting an online, tech savvy, social media-involved 2021 audience after all!

Google Search

Google Search is probably the first place to start. Search your client. Their website (and maybe socials) will come up first (hopefully) so scroll until you see a different brand.

Search up the type of product that they sell or are known for and check out the top results to show up. Be realistic, though: if your client sells something that seems similar but is at the opposite end of the price spectrum, keep the difference in brand and audience in mind. Send yourself on a mini rabbit-hole wander and jump from site to site. Keep a note of the styles that you see: any patterns, fabrics, colours that they like to push more than other designs. 

Facebook

Facebook is, of course, another great place. But not for the reasons you might think of right away. Facebook groups for fellow marketers can be searched for others asking questions about the same type of product your client is trying to sell. Use the search function to look for posts that include a couple of keywords that relate to what you’re selling and, chances are, you’ll find that someone else has asked the same question. You’ll find people looking to sell something to rich, old people or teens who go to music festivals and the comments will typically be full of helpful advice (and memes). This method can be a hit or a miss depending on how niche a product you’re trying to sell but can definitely provide some inspiration, intentional or not. 

Facebook Newsfeed

Your Facebook Newsfeed. This piece of advice only really works if you’re part of the target demographic, or close to it. Click the little drop down arrow next to the ad that you’re seeing and click ‘Why am I seeing this?’ It will let you know if you’ve been targeted because of your demographic, interests, or even location. If you’re lucky, it might reveal something about the type of person the ad is targeting. If it seems like you’re the wrong type of person for what they’re selling, make a mental note of that – they’re probably sweeping too wide. If you had even a second of interest in it even when it seemed unrelated, mull on why this was the case. Was the ad super attention-grabbing? Could you see other people in your demographic/with your interests also pausing?

Instagram

Go to your client’s Instagram page (if they have one. If they don’t, find a competitor that does). Click the little drop down button and check out the list of other accounts that Instagram thinks are similar. Test these out and see if they have the right presence to be an Interest option. Check the influencers or celebrities who have tagged the brand in their posts. Do they have a brand? A certain aesthetic? This method can be quite time consuming and Instagram will often show you lesser-known or smaller brands (albeit with a decent Instagram following) and so you’ll have to wade through the masses.

Others

Check the client’s website and existing ads/posts. If they haven’t provided a customer profile or list of competitors, this could help you create your own idea of who is buying. It sounds obvious, but “Do they feature pretty blonde girls at the beach in flowy dresses?” Think about brands that they would wear or places they would go. What are their professions? Does the brand include that they ethically source their materials in their About Us page and have a sustainable “green” line? Add words like ‘organic’ ‘ethical fashion’ or even other brands known for their sustainability to your list. Sometimes it will take a little bit of digging to create an audience that is super effective but not as obvious.

Conclusion

Interests can range from similar brands, to keywords involving the product type, all the way to class (luxury, travelling, potentially even living location or income if you’re trying to sell something high-end).

While the amount of data the Internet holds on regular people can be terrifying to think about, we have these crazy, unpredictable algorithms to thank for making researching for social media ON social media so much easier. It’s also great to talk to someone who’s a fan of what the client sells, has a similar aesthetic, or is of the target demographic but we can’t always be that lucky.