Brand Challenge & Audience Tasks

Module day 3 at Cirqueon (Photo: Filip Staněk)

From challenges to opportunities

Brand challenges and audience tasks are important tools when building your brand and generating insights with which you can then expand your audience or engage more meaningfully with your current followers.

To start, define your brand challenge. What is the biggest issue or opportunity you have? This could be something rather general, such as not having enough followers on a social media platform, or a more tightly defined issue, such as getting people of a certain demographic to attend your shows.

This is the challenge you are setting out to solve. If you are working as a part of a company or group, you might want to discuss the brand challenge with your colleagues and see if you can reach a consensus. This helps you affirm that you have found the right issue or opportunity.

Tools for planning

Next you should define the audience segment you will focus on. This could be, for example, your current followers, people who used to follow you but for some reason don’t anymore, a completely new audience segment who isn’t familiar with your work, people who follow your work only occasionally and so on. The more clearly you can define the focus group, the better your results will be.

The audience task itself can be split into four parts. The first is their current behaviour, i.e., what the audience does now, which is based on the data that has been gathered. From this behaviour and data the audience’s current belief – what belief the audience holds that drives current actions or stops doing what you want them to do – can be hypothesized. Then follows another hypothesis, the audience’s future belief: what new belief would drive the desired behaviour? Finally, there is the future behaviour, which is simply what you want the audience to do. This is the goal you are aiming for.

The key to defining the brand challenge is to start from the end: you must first figure out what you want the audience to do, and from there work out the necessary steps on how to get there.

Here is an example of an audience task.

>>> Download a blank Audience Task Tool sheet for your personal use

Further reading

How to Create a Brand Strategy Part 1: Using Audience Insight to Drive Your Brand

Best tools to find your target audience

The five W’s: an old tool for the new task of audience analysis (An oldie but goldie! Even though it was written in the 1990s, still has a lot of points that are relevant in the 2020s)