How to Excite a Target Audience (or How to Boil Water)

Exciting the water molecules to a boil requires 212° Fahrenheit (or 100° Celsius) requires heat — consistently applied. To maintain that excitement with the H2O to release steam requires the heat be constantly applied.

I introduced the metaphor of boiling water to excite the target audience in the B2B2C marketing of a brand. Now I’m going to explain how.

Consistent and constant heat.

Creating a strategy (and then executing with some flexibility) to create consistent and constant “heat” on a target audience requires research up front. Who’s the target audience? Where can that audience be reached? What methods are the most effective?

More than likely in today’s landscape — especially in B2B2C — the marketplace can be so splintered that a highly integrated campaign across traditional and digital platforms is ideal.

Executing it is another matter.

The so-called experts in social media, online advertising, print media, push or pull marketing, content marketing, etc. might advocate for one of the other with promises that theirs is the best, the silver bullet, the one that will win.

Ignore them.

Ask your target audience. And I’m not suggesting some massive market research study.

I’ve professionally used for a while and find it works very well for my needs. There are other options. If your company lacks a list of consumers, I recommend purchasing a list or two from an industry-focused magazine. includes some “certified” questions considered free from bias. In the Question Bank feature on the site, search for topics of interest keywords.

For example, one market with which I work is fire service. Not too long ago, the industry-leader media company said about 80 percent of all U.S. firefighters are on Facebook.

In a series of market surveys over the course of the last couple of years, I’ve asked active-duty firefighters how often they access Facebook; whether it’s from a desktop, laptop or smartphone; whether they self-identify as a firefighter on Facebook; and other basic demographic questions.

Since the U.S. government already knows there’s 1.1 million firefighters, from there we can come up with some general ideas combining these three data resources (I recommend using U.S. labor statistics as a resource in B2B2C).

Quickly triangulating, with Baby Boomers retiring more and more from firefighting, Generation X firefighters were more likely to be online. I knew that an online campaign targeted for that demographic would be more successful. And since the mobile platforms were the most popular platforms to accessing online, any campaign would need to work well on smartphones and tablets.

All of this is to say, I figured out where to apply the heat.

In the next entry, I’ll explain what it takes to get the proverbial water really hot.

Published by

Michael Cheek

With more than 20 years of communication experience, Michael Cheek offers solid marketing expertise, especially in the digital frontier. He currently resides in Georgia but he's open to relocate anywhere the opportunities take him. Learn more at You can follow him on Twitter at and see more about his professional experience at Reach him via e-mail at

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