Target Market imageAs a business owner, you absolutely must know who your target market is. These are the people who will use your product or service. Not surprisingly, there are many business owners who cannot easily define their target market. They either assume that everyone is a potential customer, or they just really never gave it any thought. The major problem with not defining a target market is money.

You have a limited marketing and advertising budget, and spending money to market to a target audience is much more efficient than using it to market generally and broadly. You might think that you are limiting your sales when you target a marketing audience. However, if you market to a group that buys your product eight out of ten times as opposed to one that buys it one out of ten times, you are going to have a stronger business. And, eventually you will probably convert one more out of that ten. Imagine if 90% of the people you market to are buying what you have to offer. This is an amazing return on your marketing investment.

So how do you start identifying a target market? You need to find out information about the people who have purchased your product in the past. How old are they? Where do they live? How much disposable income do they have? How are they educated? Are they students or professionals or homemakers? These may seem like silly questions to ask, but any information you can get about them can be used to determine a marketing strategy that will best appeal to them.

Getting started is simple. Start talking to your customers. Consider a survey, particularly a short one with a few identifying questions. If you have face to face time with your customers, talk to them. Find out why they chose your company and your products over the competition. Knowing this information will be power for you in future advertising activities.

There are many places where you can find information about how to identify and market to a target market in order to build a stronger business and use your marketing budget more effectively. If you want to take advantage of this trick of the trade, take a look at the following websites and books in order to learn more.

Websites

  • http://www.smallbusinessbrief.com/forum/showthread.php?t=12644
  • http://www.cyberdesignz.com/blog/website-design/tips-to-identify-your-target-audience/
  • http://www.esmalloffice.com/SBR_template.cfm?DocNumber=PL12_2000.htm

Books

  • The Market Segmentation Workbook: Target Marketing for Marketing Managers – Lyndon Simkin (978-0415118927)
  • The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Target Marketing by Susan A. Friedmann (978-1592579037)
  • On Target : The Book on Marketing Plans by Tim Berry and Doug Wilson (978-0966489132)

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