Although this is a step-by-step series, everyone's methods will (and should) vary, so it really depends on how much time you think it will take (if you're billing hourly). What tools do you have at your disposal vs. how much researching for information will you have to do on your own? Will you have to pay for research reports or companies? Do you pay a monthly service for data or research?
Why not? When you skimp on tools, you hinder your marketing from getting better. So, regardless of whether you choose these specific tools or not, make it your goal to find tools that you use regularly. Better tools are equivalent to better marketing. Whatever the tool you choose, make sure that you understand it well and that it makes a measurable improvement on your marketing efforts.
Keep focusing on your website’s technical infrastructure. This is essential to delivering a great user experience and lays the groundwork for your SEO efforts. This means things like site accessibility, speed, information architecture, and overall site functionality, and also content that includes proper structured data, internal linking, and other markup to ensure that Google yields richer search results on your behalf. According to HubSpot Research, page speed and mobile optimization are the most utilized tactics for SEO.
Let’s look at another example. Maybe you wrote an long-form guide all about Instagram Marketing called “Top Instagram Marketing Strategies.” You’re mainly targeting the search phrase: “Instagram Marketing Strategy”. Even just a couple of years ago this content would likely rank highly for a vast spread of related queries - now, not so much. Instead of trying to rank for everything with one large guide, you could break out parts of it into smaller, individual blog posts to help rank for more granular queries that come with differing intent.
I completely agree that defintion of a target audience isa great first step, but would ask if adding in competitors to the analysis (mentioned here as a later step) helps draw out who your target audience would be via comparisons, i.e. showing who you are an who you are not - would be very interested to hear opinions on how this tactic can be used within the overall step in coordination with targeted keyword discovery.