Defining Your Market

Defining your target market is critical if you plan on any measure of success in your business. A solid foundation for your business requires that one of the first things – if not THE first thing you need to do is to – DEFINE YOUR TARGET MARKET! In laymen’s terms, that means you need to figure out who your typical customer is, and design your marketing to reach those people. If you fail to do so, you’re marketing efforts will be like tumbleweeds – rolling around aimlessly in whatever direction the wind blows them.

Defining Means Being More Specific

There was a time when business owners would say things like “I’m marketing our products/services to people between the ages of 21 and 59.” That’s great if you think every 21 – 59 year old out there will buy from you, but that’s just not reality. These days, age doesn’t mean what it used to. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “60 is the new 40” (or some variation of that). That’s very true today. Generational marketing, defines consumers not just by their ages, but also uses social, economic, demographic and psychological factors, that give marketers a more accurate picture of that target consumer. Generational marketing is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to defining your target market.

6 Other Ways To Define Your Target Market

  1. Look At Your Current Customers: Which one(s) bring in the most business? Why do they buy from you? It’s highly likely that others like them would also benefit from your product/service.
  2. Choose specific demographics: Who has a need for your product/service and who would most likely purchase it. Consider; age, gender, occupation, location, income/educational level, or marital status just to name a few.
  3. Check out your competitors: Who are they marketing to? See if there’s a niche they’ve missed, and target that group.
  4. Check out characteristics: This is also known as “psychographics” in the marketing world. This covers things like; personality, attitudes, interests/hobbies, lifestyles, etc. How will your product/service fit in?
  5. Analyze your product/service: Make a list of every feature of your product/service. Next to each feature, write down the benefit(s) each feature will provide. Once you’ve completed that, make a list of the people/businesses that need what your benefit will fulfill.
  6. Assess your decision: When you’ve defined your target market, ask yourself these questions; Is there a large enough market for my product/service? Will they benefit from and/or see a need for my product/service? Can they afford it? Are they easily accessible? Will I be able to reach them with my message?

Defining your target market is the hard part, but you don’t need to go crazy doing it. Once you have your target market defined, it will be easy to determine what marketing message will resonate with them and what media to use to reach them. Defining your target market will also save you big on marketing dollars while giving you a much better return on those marketing dollars at the same time.

 

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