Experts know there is more to modern marketing strategy than age, name and gender… and they are ready to help you find your mark!
If you believe isolating a target market is going to limit your sales prospects, you are woefully mistaken. It’s like playing darts with a machine gun instead of a single dart with precision aim. Shredding the bullseye and wasting ammunition with hundreds of missed shots is not only lacking in motivation, it is unproductive and expensive. Further, people do not wish to be assaulted with “come-ons” that do not speak to them. Be proud of your products and services and honor your business through intention and results by cleanly defining your core audience and keeping your primary brand message pure and concentrated instead of sloppy and diluted.
The trick to target audience identification is to understand what your business gives and to whom. Then, look at your marketing strategy as part of the essential financial investment you need to make so your business can turn into something with the greatest return possible as you grow and get professional assistance in this department early in the process. If you are wondering where and how to invest in a proper marketing strategy, the answer lies within the B2B services industry where marketing specialists await the chance to give you a personal consultation and the chance to cleanly hit your target audience with exactly what they need to see and hear from you.
Rich Panowitz, Area Manager located in Houston for Minuteman Press International, knows that there are multiple sources and technologies that can assist small businesses as they narrow-down their prospective customer lists. However, he reminds us to continue with old-fashioned networking at the community level even as we begin to pursue deeper analytics to come up with a target audience. He explains, “Some advice for new business owners who are starting to determine a target audience would be to always listen to what is going on in your area. Whether you’re out with the family having dinner at a restaurant or on the soccer field watching your kids play, you never know when someone will ask what you do for a living. Hopefully your response will be something along the lines of, ‘I own a business. Here is one of my business cards.’”
Hitting the bullseye with precision by getting to know the personalities you are targeting
Did you know that as much as 70% of Facebook users who motion to “like” a company page wouldn’t actually qualify as part of that particular brand’s target audience? This factoid is proof that it simply isn’t enough to just grab a wide social media approach and run with it, collecting “likes” that may be of little value. Keeping with the digital marketing theme (which always needs to be coupled with printed marketing collateral), it is necessary to watch your customers’ social media activity to get an idea of the kinds of sites they visit regularly before you start to try and build a rapport with them through engaging conversations. You won’t know what to say until you know who you are talking to, after all.
- Pro Tip: If you don’t have a clean shot at your target audience, you’ll miss out on the chance to develop a loyal customer base. You could invest in a direct mail campaign but if you fail to narrow down your audience, even your most brilliant marketing concepts will be rendered a weak tool that will go largely ignored. For this reason, expert help is always a wise thing to secure and is well worth the money.
So you have something to sell and you just know it is of high value and you can build a business on it. Don’t make another move until you collect information from a large sampling of online and industry resources – while understanding your potential clients’ primary characteristics and creating a more detailed profile from which to work. Things like gender, age and a rough idea of annual income help, but so do marital status, employment situation and as you hone your lists even further with assistance from a marketing services provider, you could pick up more personal things like the names of family pets.
How to use pride in your business AND “psychographic profiling” to nail down your ideal target audience
Get to know “your people” so you can tailor your contact with them in a way that will genuinely win their attention. Once you have developed pride and motivation from contemplating the great stuff your business has to offer, it’s time to understand your prospects on a deeper level. You should gain a general idea of their spending habits so you can come to understand the reasons and the ways that your potential clients will spend their cash. Taking note of their activities, opinions and interests is the way to do this; and if you are working with a marketing professional in the B2B services industry, you are doing yourself a giant favor in this regard.
Jim Galasso, NY/NJ/CT Regional Vice President for Minuteman Press International, points to sage, old advice which is to first “know thyself” and protect your reputation as you start to garner attention. “As you gather your target audience and prepare to pursue their business, you have to know your strengths and weaknesses and you have to play to your strengths so you can provide the best products and services as they move from prospects to customers,” Jim advises.
Once you become confident and well-versed in what you offer to clients as Jim Galasso recommends, there are more things you can do to help develop a strong customer base through targeted marketing. For instance, beyond basic demographics which is a tool to help understand who your buyer is, there is also psychographic profiling which is a tool able to help you understand the reasons why your clients make purchases. Small business owners hoping to find and please their target audiences can use both to gather a comprehensive profile of their perfect client.
A cleaner shot at your target comes from expanding beyond demographics
- Single Female
- Age: 30-35
- Spends $1100 per month/online
- Single Mom
- Two children: under 5 and teen
- Household income: 65k+
- Lives in state other than parents
- Lives within 4 miles of brick and mortar location
Jim Gouge, owner of digital print, design and marketing franchise Minuteman Press in Greensboro, NC, enjoys seeing how his clients enjoy the fruits of productive consultations in which he helps them isolate both their unique selling propositions as well as their ideal target audiences: “First, you have to decide to whom you want to sell your products and services. Then, for instance, we at Minuteman Press can help craft a direct marketing campaign that will be perfect for your target audience. We can get and develop any list customized to your goal. Once you determine your target audience, know that every marketing campaign is different, but a common need is repetition of contact and making sure that the printed marketing collateral is just the right fit for the situation.”
Jim emphasizes a truth proven in multiple studies, which is that even today, “Effective print marketing is the most powerful form of targeted marketing.”
As you gain some ground with a properly executed and continually updated marketing campaign, remember to protect and further your progress by adhering to the basics of business ethics, starting with trustworthy service.
- Pro Tip: “Don’t make a promise you cannot deliver on because if you do, your poor reputation will drive your target audience away. Reputation is everything. As you work to gain the attention of your target audience, remember if you don’t have the ability to make good on your word, you lose credibility and foil all of your efforts.” – Minuteman Press International Regional Vice President (NY/NJ/CT) Jim Galasso
Whether you are considering business ownership or have already had your grand opening, you would be ill-advised to fall into the routine of a blanket shotgun marketing approach. If you partner with an experienced marketing professional, you can tap into the many sources available today that will allow you to develop an impressively precise targeted marketing campaign.
The effects of determining your ideal target audience will result in your ability to make each of your prospects feel as if you are speaking to them on a personal level with products and services just right for their needs, without wasting energy or extra cash on a broad, generic effort. So, avoid the temptation to spend time and money trying to lure a wide and diverse audience to your business. Finding and appealing to specific people will provide your bottom line and your sense of entrepreneurship with the lucrative and satisfying rush that comes with hitting your mark cleanly.
For expert consultations on finding and reaching your target audience, find your local Minuteman Press at www.minutemanpress.com.
Learn more about Minuteman Press franchise opportunities at www.minutemanpressfranchise.com.