Your target audience is your focus area of the consumer market that you think will respond most to your product or service. It is essential that you target this section of the market because, if accurate, it will represent the best return on investment. However, this doesn’t mean that you should exclude people outside of this target audience. Pinpointing your target market is an essential part of marketing, no matter your business.
Really look at what you sell
What is it that you sell? What are its features and how does it help people? List all of the benefits of your product or service and then write a list of person types who would appreciate those benefits the most. For example, if you provide a babysitting service, working and single parents are probably going to be the best sort of people to target. If your product or service is expensive, you should be targeting people with wealth – for example, designer clothing should be targeted at people at the height of their careers.
Analyze your customer base and obtain data
If you are already established as a business then you will already have a customer base. These are the people who are already buying from you, so they obviously must like what you do. Analyze them. What do they all have in common? If you are already collecting information on your customers, you can use this to identify trends. Perhaps many of your clients are in the 18-24 age range. Maybe lots of them live in urban areas, or in coastal areas. You may be selling your products or services to a lot of working parents. With a set of common characteristics, you can then target these in order to bring in more like-minded customers.
There are so many different demographic areas to think about and they can really affect people’s buying habits. These are some of the demographic and psychographic areas you could focus on:
- Age – people over the age of 65 generally aren’t interested in video games, at least not yet.
- Gender – men are unlikely to be interested in menopause-related products.
- Geographic location – you wouldn’t offer farm equipment to someone living in Los Angeles.
- Job – office stationery probably isn’t too helpful for a chef.
- Income – expensive watches aren’t going to interest someone on minimum wage.
- Marital status – don’t target single people with your selection of Valentine’s Day cards.
- Ethnic background – certain hair products are only really relevant to certain hair types.
- Lifestyle – don’t advertise your bar to non-drinkers.
- Interests and hobbies – you will probably want to target your gaming energy drink at people who like video games.
- Personality – introverts probably don’t want to go to your nightclub.
Is it large enough?
It’s all good identifying your specific target audience, but if it’s made up of 18-24 year olds on over $100,000 a year, who are also married and like stamp-collecting, then you will probably struggle to make a profit. Don’t try to be too specific when identifying your audience because you’ll want to make sure that you can still make money from them.
Can I reach my target audience?
Once you have identified your target audience, you must then find a way of getting your message across to them, otherwise there is no point to the exercise. This is where marketing comes in. There are plenty of online marketing companies out there that can help you actually reach your target audience. Social media is an excellent place to do your marketing because there are specific tools available to help you target your product or service to specific demographics. Check out the Valentino Vaschetto channel for other online marketing tips. Valentino Vaschetto is a marketing and coding expert who works for Iconic Industry, an advertising agency based in San Diego and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Pinpointing your target audience takes time and a significant amount of research. You must fully understand why people buy your product or pay for your service, and then identify who it is that will appreciate the benefits that you offer. Your target audience should be a certain segment of your market but you cannot afford to be too specific, otherwise you won’t be able to sell enough. Remember that just because you have a target audience, that doesn’t mean that you should ignore other demographics. Being open to other demographics could result in your product reaching new groups of customers that you had not even considered.