In years past, advertising – or, at least, choosing where to advertise – was a pretty simple task because there were only so many mediums to work with. They are what we refer to today as “traditional” advertising avenues and are largely print-based. From magazines to posters, pamphlets to newspapers and even billboards, these mediums were pretty straightforward – at least when compared to the options businesses have today!
The introduction of digital media has been a game changer for virtually every industry and business, and advertising is no different. Now, there is virtually an endless number of digital options for places to advertise your business or service, and the methods for targeting on each medium are as nuanced as ever before.
“This can be overwhelming, but it also represents a huge opportunity,” says Taigen Thorne, Director of Public Relations & Media at Sage Age Strategies. “By honing in on your target audience, you can allocate your resources to platforms and strategies for prospective customers that are far more likely to respond favorably to your service, rather than wasting money on a ‘spray and pray’ approach that covers a more broad swath of the population.”
One such method, similar to demographic and geographic targeting, is “dayparting.” It’s not as well known of a strategy, but it can be immensely effective.
So … What Is “Dayparting,” Exactly?
Dayparting is a practice that involves dividing a day into specific segments, and directing specific forms of programming or advertising to your target audience. The reasons are clear: You’ll reach different groups of people at different times of the day. So, it makes sense to target your messaging to each individual group based on the time of day they are most likely to engage.
You may already be dividing your audience by demographic and geographic factors. Dayparting adds yet another level of nuance to this targeting, and increases your chances of hitting a home run by reaching your target demographic at the perfect time of day. Why engage in dayparting, you ask?
It’s focused. Think about it: Would you rather your sales team spend their time making random cold calls to any name they find in the phone book, hoping to find a prospective customer, or is it smarter to provide them with a list of individuals who actually have a need for your service? Which is more likely to yield a higher ratio of positive results?
It’s economical. You have a limited budget. If you’re like most organizations, advertising and marketing is often the first to go when trying to cut costs, which is a little bit like cutting off your nose to spite your face, but more on that in another post. Dayparting lets you use your limited budget even more strategically, making the most of your dollars.
Know Thyself – and Thy Audience
Okay, now that you know the benefits of dayparting, you’re probably wondering how to get started. There are two things you need to keep in mind when implementing an effective dayparting strategy:
First, know thyself.
Not all products and services can be “dayparted” the same way. A restaurant looking for happy hour customers, for example, will daypart its advertising much differently than one hoping to boost the brunch crowd. You must know your service and what you offer intimately in order to effectively daypart your advertising.
A good way to do this is to examine the key differentiators that set your community apart. Are you the only community in the neighborhood with a state-of-the-art indoor pool? Do you offer better off-campus events and programming than any other? Perhaps your memory care services are second to none.
In knowing the aspects of your community that make you stand out, you can begin to fine-tune the messaging you use to highlight these key differentiators. Then, you can target those key messages to reach individuals at the times they are most likely to be receptive!
Next, know thy audience.
Knowing your key differentiators is a critical first step, but next, you must know your audience better than you know yourself in order to conduct an effective dayparting strategy.
For example, if you know your key demographic is active seniors who tune in to digital media in the morning while catching the news, your strategy will be much different than if your key audience is the children of seniors who are facing memory problems and dementia. The latter will be far more likely to engage in digital media and other advertising in the evenings, after returning home from work.
A thorough market analysis of your audience is in order here. This can be done not just with dayparting in mind, but in the context of a larger, more holistic and cohesive marketing strategy that considers all aspects of your current and prospective efforts to reach your audience. Dayparting is effective, but it’s only one piece of the puzzle. A market analysis will provide you with insight into how your customers see you, what the community at-large believes about your services and offerings, which competitors are fighting for your prospective customers, what features and services those prospective customers value most, and much more.
Want to hone in on your target audience but unsure how to get started? Talk to us today about how to make sure you’re firing on all cylinders – in unison – at your organization.