Growth vs Core Audience: How to Spot the Difference and Grow Right



Have you ever tried speaking two languages at once? It's a mess, right? This is precisely what many businesses end up doing when they blur the lines between their core and growth audiences. Let's take a stroll down this often-confusing alley and see if we can't clear up some of that fog.

Untangling the Web: Where Businesses Trip Up

At first glance, you might think, “An audience is an audience, right?” Wrong. Mixing up your core and growth audiences is a misstep that can cost you dearly. Apart from the glaring issue of diluted messaging, businesses often grapple with:

1. Resource Misallocation: Investing resources in strategies tailored for the growth audience but mistakenly targeting the core audience (or vice versa) is like buying winter clothes for a summer trip. It's a mismatch that leads to inefficiencies.

2. Brand Inconsistency: When businesses swing back and forth trying to please both audiences simultaneously, they risk a shaky brand identity. It's the classic "trying to be everything to everyone" pitfall.

3. Lost Opportunities: By not clearly distinguishing between the two audiences, businesses might miss out on capitalizing on the unique advantages each group offers. It's like having a Swiss Army knife but only using it as a paperweight.

4. Decreased ROI: Inefficient targeting can mean a decreased return on investment. Every misdirected ad or campaign is money that could've been better spent elsewhere.

Simple Terms, Simple Definitions

Before we move forward, let’s define what core and growth audiences are.

Core Audience

This is your bread and butter—the group that's been with you from your first awkward business steps, supporting and championing your brand. They're your ride-or-dies, the ones who resonate deeply with your original mission and values. Think of them as your brand's “home base."

Core Audience pillars:

- Long-term engagement with your brand

- Higher lifetime value

- Act as brand ambassadors

- Have a deep emotional connection with your brand's story and values

Growth Audience

These folks are the potential newbies, the ones you're trying to woo to expand your brand's horizons. They might not know your backstory or why you started, but they're intrigued by what you're offering now. They're the "come for the product, stay for the brand" group.

Growth Audience pillars:

- Newer engagement with the brand

- Potential for high lifetime value

- Still exploring your brand's offerings

- More responsive to current trends and promotions

Objective Variations: Core vs. Growth Audience

Every audience has its unique rhythm and beat. And for a brand to truly resonate, it must move to these distinct tunes. As we continue to dig, let's deep-dive into the varied objectives when targeting your core and growth audiences, ensuring you're hitting the right notes every time.

Core Audience objectives:

- Strengthen Loyalty: Remind them why they fell in love with your brand in the first place.

- Gather Feedback: Who better to tell you what's working and what's not?

- Drive Referrals: They're your unofficial brand ambassadors. Leverage that!

Growth Audience Objectives:

- Increase Awareness: Let them know who you are and what you bring to the table.

- Promote New Offerings: Tempt them with the latest and greatest.

- Educate: They might not know your origin story—yet. Make it worth their while.

Strategies Tailored for Each Audience

A brand can fine-tune its approach for each audience segment, ensuring that every message strikes a chord. But, as the age-old adage goes, knowing is just half the battle. It's the execution that truly counts.

Strategies for Core Audience: Your Loyal Fanbase

Your core audience is like the old friend you can call up at 2 AM knowing they'll pick up. They're your pillars, your tried-and-true fans who’ve seen you at your best and worst and have stuck around. Understanding them isn't just about appreciation; it's about optimization.

1. Personalized Engagements: Offer tailored experiences, exclusive deals, or loyalty programs. Show them you value their continued commitment. Remember when Spotify wrapped up your yearly listening stats and threw them at you in a nifty little package? That's the stuff.

2. Feedback Loops: They know you inside out. Use this familiarity to solicit feedback and refine your offerings. Ever notice how Netflix asks if you're still watching? They’re discreetly gauging your engagement levels.

3. Community Building: Establish forums or platforms for them to connect over shared interests related to your brand. Harley Davidson's HOG (Harley Owners Group) is a shining example.

Strategies for Growth Audience: The Potential Besties

These are the people you want at your next party but haven't sent the invite yet. They might know of you, have heard a whisper or two, but haven't fully committed. You want to turn these potential enthusiasts into die-hard fans.

1. Awareness Campaigns: Splash your brand across channels they frequent. Think of Apple's billboard ads for every iPhone launch. Big, bold, impossible to ignore.

2. Engaging Content: Not advertisements, but genuine, enriching content. TED, originally an obscure conference, became a global sensation thanks to its free, quality online talks.

3. Partnerships and Collaborations: Team up with brands or influencers that resonate with this group. When Uber Eats partnered with popular local restaurants in new cities, they tapped directly into a ready-made customer base.

Case Studies: A Deep Dive into Targeted Strategies

Let’s see how big brands embrace the power of both audiences

1. Starbucks: Building a Loyalty Empire for the Core Audience

Opiniones sobre Starbucks Frappuccino - Frappuccino

The Strategy: Starbucks Rewards Loyalty Program

Starbucks isn't just selling coffee; they're selling an experience. Recognizing their core audience's love for that signature Starbucks feel, they introduced a loyalty program offering freebies, discounts, and early access to new products. But what truly made it shine? The integration with their mobile app. By combining mobile payment options with reward tracking, Starbucks made it both convenient and rewarding for loyalists to keep coming back.

Key Takeaway: Understanding the lifestyle and habits of your core audience can lead to innovations that not only reward loyalty but also integrate seamlessly into their daily routines.

2. Dollar Shave Club: Humorous Outreach to the Growth Audience

The Success Story Of Dollar Shave Club - Velocity

The Strategy: Viral Video Content

When Dollar Shave Club wanted to expand its audience, it didn't go for the conventional. Instead, it produced a quirky, humorous video that went viral, introducing the brand to millions overnight. The message? High-quality razors don’t need to cost a fortune. This struck a chord with the growth audience who were tired of overpriced razors but hadn't yet considered an alternative.

Key Takeaway: Breaking the mold with content that resonates with your growth audience's pain points and desires can skyrocket brand awareness and conversion rates.

3. Spotify: Tuning Into Audience Dynamics

Nobody Listens Like You in Spotify's New Global Campaign | Muse by Clio

The Strategy: Personalized Playlists & Podcast Recommendations

Music streaming giant Spotify knew they had a committed core of music lovers. To keep them hooked and to attract potential new listeners, Spotify introduced algorithm-driven personalized playlists like "Discover Weekly" and "Release Radar." These features catered to the core audience's desire for fresh tunes while also drawing in growth audiences by simplifying music discovery. At the same time, their foray into the podcasting world diversified their offerings, making them appealing to a wider audience who crave spoken content.

Key Takeaway: Leveraging data to understand and cater to user preferences can bridge the gap between core enthusiasts and newer users, offering value to both segments.

See you at Bolder

While understanding the distinct dynamics of core and growth audiences is crucial, implementing strategies that resonate with both can be challenging. It's about striking the right balance – nurturing your brand's mainstays while venturing into newer territories.

And if you're seeking guidance on this intricate journey? We at Bolder invite you over to grow properly. If you need assistance in tailoring strategies that embrace both your audiences, and ensuring your brand's message hits the right notes every time, feel free to reach out

We're here to help you navigate the symphony of successful brand growth.

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