Let Your Audience Be Your Guide

Marketers – and the executives to whom marketers report – often commit the mistake of designing projects before thinking through objectives and defining who is going to use them.

Take, for example, a website. Designers, marcom, executives and anyone else who can fit around the conference room table will spend hours “designing” the site, intensely debating over colors, images and cool Flash menus. The final result is a website that has been designed for the company, not its audience. In a previous post, I discuss putting projects into the proper, logical sequence.

For the Storming of Thunder Ridge, we quantified our objectives, defined our audience types (or personas) and identified the communication methods to which these audiences consume and will respond. The website, we discovered, is a key place for our potential cyclists to learn about and register for the benefit ride. Some riders types will immediately sign up. Others, however, will remain on the fence, so the website must address concerns, educate them and get each rider excited on the benefits of committing. We expect to frequently add content such as a virtual route tour, training tips and a rider safety checklist to keep our audience engaged and drive them to register.

Here is a draft sitemap (with notes) that we generated using our audience interviews as guidance:

Top Menu

  • Ride Details
    • Route options
      • 35 (Recreational Robin persona)
      • 65 (Enthusiast Ed persona)
      • 100 (Hardcore Harry persona)
    • Directions to Start/Finish
    • Maps
    • Elevation
    • Time elapse route video
    • Register
    • Checklist
    • Rider safety
  • Accommodations
    • Hotels & deals
    • Nearby restaurants
    • Air show (Blue Angels in town this weekend)
  • For a Good Cause
    • Charity benefit explanation page
  • Sponsor
    • List
    • How to become a sponsor
  • Volunteer
  • Contact
  • Photos
    • Previous rides
    • How to buy photos

Home Page

  • About description
  • Days until the ride countdown
  • Contact info
  • Newsfeed (maybe FB & Twitter) – new content
  • Follow (RSS, FB, Twitter)
  • Sponsors


What do you think? Please let me know in the comments below. Thanks for reading!

(Image: arimoore)



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