Getting to know your target market is essential to the success of any business. It’s clients that make a business, and for this reason, small business owners need to go out of their way to discover all that they can about those who are patrons.
“Every company’s greatest assets are its customers, because without customers there is no company.” – Micheal LeBoeuf
In this post I share what you an introduction to what you need to find out about your clients to build a business in terms of both a clientbase and revenue.
Know Your Target Market
It’s important that any business understands as much as possible about their clients. This may sound like a challenge, but once you know what you’re looking for, it’s a puzzle that you can solve.
It’s well worth the effort to really study clients. You need to know where to find them and how to market to them, as it’s these answers that will make the biggest difference with regards to how many sales you can make. Knowing this information will make it possible to really build up your business and reap the benefits in terms of profits. Getting to know your target market is one of the best things you can do to develop and grow.
Getting to know your target market
In today’s crowded market, a business must stand out as being something somewhat special for a buyer to want to make a purchase. It is usually a business that focuses on customers’ needs that will win the most customers and retain them. Traditional marketing has focused on the product or the brand, but in these modern times, it is essential to learn what the customer needs and provide it to them.
Optimise your resources and your efforts
Once you start marketing you will very quickly realise that your resources are limited both in terms of time and money. With this being a factor, it is essential to find your target market rapidly so that you can optimise your resources and efforts.
The more you know about your clients and prospects, the more you can optimise your marketing for them.
What is your product and who is your client?
To begin with you need to study your product and understand who would want to buy it. Think about who would benefit the most from your product.
The demographics of a business’s clients is very important for growth. For a moment, think about your clients and potential prospects and ask yourself these questions.
Write down the answers, you’ll gain far more from this exercise.
Questions about your target market
- how much money do you think they make?
- are they male or female?
- how old are they?
- where do they live – do they need to live local to your business for you to provide your service or products to them or can they be global?
- what do you think they need your service or product for?
- how often will they need your service or product?
- what is the lifestyle of your customers?
- what is their education level?
- how do they make a living?
- which other brands or products are they buying?
When you build up a profile of your customer, it can answer some questions for you – such as where to find more customers to sell to. Knowing where to find your clients online and offline will give you access to unlimited numbers of them. Knowing what types of media and publications that they buy, and where they spend their time (online and offline) will enable you to be in the same place so that you can keep selling to them.
What do your customers want?
Whatever publications your customers are reading you should be buying these publications too. You need to know what the current trend is in your business niche and what your customers are looking for so that you can provide them with it. For example, if you’re a baker, red velvet cakes might be the trend. If you’re a wedding business, pink could be this season’s accent colour.
How can you help your clients?
Another key question for you as a business owner in getting to know your target market is to ask yourself what key issues or problems do your clients have. They don’t have to have problems as such if you are supplying luxury goods to them, it might just be that it’s a want. Whatever the case is, you need to understand how their life will be improved by acquiring your product or service.
To really discover how to satisfy and encourage your market to buy from you, you need to discover what the needs, questions and problems that your customers have. You can do this directly or indirectly by doing the following:
- follow the online forums in your business niche, you can get a feel for what your target customers need to know as they ask each other in the forums
- other ways to find out include holding an answer and question session with your clients, ie an ask the expert session.
- focus on what the needs are of your clients. What will they gain from purchasing your products?
Benefits that may attract more clients
You will find that most benefits fit into these areas:
Save resources – time, money, effort
Increase – income, investment, brighter future, better and more personal relationships, business contacts etc
Reduce – expenses, taxes, hassle, issues, responsibilities
Improve – productivity and output, education, abilities, confidence, appearance, peace of mind, relationships, lifestyle, health, income
In addition to demographics, there are also psychographics to consider when getting to know your target market. Psychographics are the ways that people think and what they value. For example, in your target market you might have young entrepreneurs who are interested in saving time, increasing revenue and want to invest in their future. They will also have a set of behaviours that go along with the way that they think.
Many businesses get far too caught up in feeding their customers products without finding out what they want. This results in missed opportunity and can even lead to bankruptcy. So much more profit can be made by selling customers what they do want, not what we think they should want.
When analysing the profile of your customer base and what they buy, it is also important to understand what is not relevant to your customers so that you can exclude all of that from your marketing efforts. You don’t want to waste time operating in circles that are not going to be lucrative. You need to work out your geographic and demographic boundaries.
At a later date I’ll be writing more about this area and sharing with you what I will usually ask when I need to find out more about a client’s target market. In the meantime, start thinking about how you can reach your target market by learning more about your clients.
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