Identifying your target customers may be an obvious part of owning a business, yet some business owners struggle with it. Knowing who your target customer is can help you refine your marketing strategy so that it is targeted to them specifically.
Think about it like this. If you sell fashionable clothing online and claim “women” as your target market – you are sure to be missing out on business. Simply targeting all women is not specific enough to be effective.
Are you targeting college students? Are your products expensive? Do you donate a portion of your profits to a charity organization? Ask yourself questions like these when identifying customers to target.
Here are some more things to keep in mind when trying to narrow down your target audience.
What are you selling and who benefits from it?
Before you can identify your customer, you need to know your product inside and out. Then you can determine who would benefit from purchasing it. As in the previous example about selling clothes to women, define what type of women you are trying to reach instead of “all women”.
To be successful, your product needs to be associated with a benefit in the minds of consumers. Instead of just “all women”, let's say you are targeting plus-sized women. Then you will need to create a list of benefits your clothing line can bring to them. Once you determine the benefits about your product, you can move onto the next step: strategizing your marketing efforts.
Collect data about target customers, analyze it, repeat.
Study all of the insights and analytics you can get from your social media accounts and how your target customers interact with you. Think about the back end of your website too. With all this data, you’ll be able to see who is following you and looking at your content. You’ll be able to identify what’s boosting user activity and what’s not making an impact at all.
Collect the data regular which can help you further define your marketing efforts to your target customers. All that you learn will help you adjust future marketing campaigns and zero in on your potential customers.
See who the competition is targeting.
Look at the customers and followers of your competitors which can help you refine your marketing efforts. This will give you a good idea of who you should be targeting too. Remember that you should compare at least three competitors, so that you can learn from their marketing efforts! Then you can take what you learn and integrate some of the ideas you learn into your own marketing strategy.
Another benefit of studying the competition is that you may come across a new segment of consumers you would never have known to target. And if you do find a new segment, rinse and repeat these steps. Discover how to reach them and incorporate it into your marketing efforts.
Survey whenever possible.
Use social media, email marketing, and even third-party companies to survey existing and potential customers. Take as many polls as possible to see who is using your product, why they’re using it and whether or not they are satisfied.
This can not only help you identify your target market but will also help you identify potential problem areas in your business that you could improve on in the future.