Many of us know what we want to say, but have little idea of how to communicate our message effectively to the audience we want to hear it.
Quantitative research can reveal what arguments play best with which audience. However, that doesn't always translate into how to frame the argument so it resonates, sounds authentic and is believable. Sometimes, it just boils down to saying something in a way that is clear, not confusing.
Message testing usually requires one or more forms of qualitative research that involve listening to how people who are from the target audience react to the words you use – and noting the words they use to express the point you are trying to get across.
Powerful ideas can be powerless unless they are rendered in meaningful, accessible ways for the audience to which they are intended.
You wouldn't talk about a medical procedure the same way with doctors and patients. Doctors would want and need to know more of the technical details. Patients want to learn about outcomes and side effects. The level, tone and content would vary greatly, even if you were talking about the exact same thing. That is how audience-centric communications works.
Marketing campaigns often stumble by focusing on what you want to say and not on how your words will be interpreted, if heard at all.
The first step in communicating with an audience is to know as much as you can about that audience. If you craft your message so that your audience can understand what you mean and place it in a communications channel where they pay attention, you stand a much better chance of actually communicating, not just shouting into the wrong end of a megaphone.