Know your Audience

Before considering the direction of any communications or marketing campaign, it is key to identify the target audience. If you are not clear who you are trying to talk to you can’t be sure you are speaking their language. Training is available online that will help you and local partnership members make the most of the time you are able to dedicate to this.


The make up of the customer base and catchment area of your town centre, both geographically and demographically, can be found in a number of ways:

  1. Gather baseline data to form a picture of the people in your town and within a reasonable journey of the town. A good starting place is the Office of National Statistics and the economic development section of your local authority is likely to have some useful data.

  2. Identify other sources of existing research, such as recent retail studies, visitor, and shopper surveys that can start to flesh out the picture you have of the people who are the regular, occasional and potential consumers of your town centre offer.

  3. It can be worth carrying out your own research; gathering the data does not need to be expensive or complex, and there is a free guide here to get you started.Some of your key business stakeholders are likely to have undertaken some of this kind of work and will be happy to share it with you if they can see added business value to them in doing so. Alternatively, there are specialist companies who would be happy to undertake bespoke research for you.


Sharing consumer statistics is quite a different thing than sharing consumer contact information – do be aware that you need an individual’s permission to share their contact information with partners to avoid falling foul of the Data Protection Act. Having said that, it is worth collecting all the visitor contact information you can legitimately gather in order to build a 'friends' database to communicate with and market to.