You keep trying to connect to your target audience, but nothing you do seems to be working. Sometimes, the problem may be with your presentation. Other times, there may be problems with your strategy.

Here are some common issues that brands experience when trying to connect with their target audience.

1. Emotions Evoked By Your Brand

There are a number of aspects associated with branding a product, but the most important reduce to emotions that your brand evokes. Whatever emotions your brand evokes will be transferred to other aspects of your company. Similarly, if your brand's spokesperson evokes certain emotions, those will be transferred to your brand.

One of the worst problems for any brand is not provoking any emotions. Those brands may get customers that are actively repelled by other brands, but those customers won't be loyal to it.

To establish brand loyalty, you need to establish a loyal customer base. You do this through emotional appeal.

People are more likely to make choices based on emotion than on logic. Emotional appeal can also be logical, but you need to make certain that your brand connects to the user's emotions. A part of this is defining your brand both in terms of what it stands for and what it opposes.

People will choose brands that support concepts, identities, or values that they do. Whether choosing a sports team, a cause, or a group they belong to, customers value their brands supporting at least some of the same things they do.

If you have a brand spokesperson, make certain to choose carefully. The spokeperson's actions and beliefs will be attached to your brand, whether you intend them to be. Choose everything related to your brand with care, because it will send a message.

Your brand should send a consistent message. People dislike inconsistency because it makes them uncomfortable. If people are uncomfortable, they won't buy your brand.

Keep your messages consistent across different media and product lines. Although your customers from one product line may not interact with your other lines, in this world of mass media and Websites, they will see your association. If they don't like what one product stands for, that dislike will transfer itself to your other products.

A part of maintaining a consistent message can be limiting the number of sites you use. Though you may not reach as broad an audience, you can ensure that your messages are consistent across sites. Choose to spread the word on sites frequented by your target audience and ignore the rest.

2. Emotions Evoked by Your Choices

When you make a decision, it can hurt your brand. The performance of a brand can be influenced by the preferences and beliefs of its spokesperson. As a company owner or executive, you are one of the most important spokespeople your brand has.

Take care that your decisions do not reflect badly on your brand. That includes taking into account what your private decisions and communications may say about your brand. Just as a spokesperson's actions can influence the perception of a brand, so can the actions of the company's top executives. For spokespeople directly associated with a company for their livelihood, their actions can impact their brand even more strongly.

Try not to appear standoffish or arrogant. People connect to brands whose spokespeople value what they do. No one likes people who appear disconnected or only interested in themselves. Make certain you project a personal image that compliments your brand's, and be responsive to your customers requests'.

Perhaps the most important form of communication you can have is listening to your customers.

People like interaction, and not providing it to them makes you appear rude and uncaring. Even if you can't respond directly to every request, let your customers know that you've seen it. Have answers for frequently asked questions or complaints readily available.

Your responsiveness can be very beneficial to your company. This is particularly true with complaints. Most people who dislike a brand will just go somewhere else. Someone who complains has an emotional investment in your brand that should be answered. Give complaints attention and response. Otherwise, you may alienate someone looking for a reason to stay.

You may also not be interacting with the appropriate frequency. Communicating too frequently with your customers can make you look arrogant. This is particularly true when you post on social media and the news section of your webpage seemingly insignificant unsolicited information. Keep the communication limited to regular posts, requested communications, and urgent updates.

Communicating too infrequently can make you appear diffident. It can make you appear arrogant in a different way than communicating too frequently.

If you don't respond to customer requests, you can send the message that you are too important to deal with these matters. Infrequent communication can also make your brand seem irrelevant. People may assume that the reason your company isn't posting is that nothing is happening.

The best solution for problems with communication frequency is to always post at a regular time. Your frequency could be daily, weekly, monthly, or any variation in between. With a regular posting time, you can give your customers a schedule for interaction and make certain that you don't over- or under-communicate. Having a regular schedule also helps your customer know when to expect communication, which can reduce their stress.

3. Not Reaching Your Target Audience

Sometimes, people aren't interacting with your brand because they don't know about it. If you are spending the time to tailor your content to the audience, you need to take equal care discovering where to find your audience. When you evaluate your target audience, you should take the time to know where they spend their time, what sites they use, and what content they read.

One of the most important digital marketing tools has become social media. However, not all sites appeal to the same audiences. When you decide on an audience, you need to determine how prevalent social media use is for them, what sites they use, and what they use these sites for. This knowledge can make all the difference when it comes to getting people interacting with your brand.

Match your content to both your social media sites and your audience. If your audience doesn't usually read certain types of media, then using that medium to market your brand is useless. Other times, your audience's preferred content may not suit a particular social media site or format. Consider the practical implications before posting online because content needs to be of consistent quality.

Sometimes, you aren't reaching your target audience because you haven't given your strategy enough time. Even with the speed the Internet offers, it still takes time for your message to reach enough of your target audience to have an effect. Allow your brand and your audience time to interact appropriately.

* * *

In every case, you need to test your marketing strategy before making it live. Though you cannot find all the problems in testing, you can at least fix the worst flaws and know where the potential weak spots in the campaign are.

Testing your strategy can provide ideas for your next campaign before the current one has even made it to evaluation. If the same problems or high points were indicated in both the testing and actual campaign, you have found the next thing to work on.

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image of Stephen Moyers

Stephen Moyers is an online marketer and writer associated with SPINX Digital, a Los Angeles Web design company and digital marketing agency.

LinkedIn: Stephen Moyers

Twitter: @StephenMoyers