It’s highly impossible to succeed in business without understanding who you’re selling to. Whether you’re selling traditional products in a bricks and mortar store, seeking success through ecommerce or selling your expertise and skills as a package rather than a physical product, you need to know who’s in the market for what you’re selling in order to advertise to them, and to tighten up your offering to appeal to them more effectively.
Unfortunately, expertise in your sector doesn’t necessarily translate into expertise in your market, especially if you’re looking for customers beyond those normally targeted by your industry. You need a deeper understanding of your customers if you’re going to be successful, and fortunately that’s just what we’re going to be taking a look at today.
It’s all too easy to understand your customers on the simple level of a single descriptor. We’re marketing to parents, to young homeowners, to students, or any one of a hundred other terms that are easy to grasp, visualise and build a marketing strategy around. If you don’t dig deeper, however, you’re selling your market short and cutting yourself off from vital streams of revenue!
You need to grasp the principle of ‘audience segmentation’ – understanding your customers (and potential customers) not as a single monolithic block of people but as made up of distinct groups. There might be significant numbers of homeowners in your market, but if you don’t take into account your parents, students and over-65s as well, you’ll be losing out on their income.
Marketing Strategies, Plural
If you build this deep understanding of the many segments that make up your audience you can make better, more informed decisions about your marketing. If your core group are loyal customers, you can afford to relax a little in your marketing to them, to free up resources you can use to target other segments and make them feel just as valued and important to you.
A successful marketing strategy takes into account more than a single descriptor for your customers – it assigns resources aimed at capturing several distinct groups, targeting them with bespoke ads that speak to their needs, that they find where they get their news, watch their television and browse their social media. As your understanding of their commitment and spending power evolves, your ability to prioritise these different segments will improve, and your return on investment from your segmented marketing plan will skyrocket!