Target marketing is simply the practice of identifying and selling to your ideal customers. Many small business owners believe their offerings appeal to “everyone”, but the reality is any product or service only has a concentrated appeal to certain types of people. Even mass market products, like mobile phones, are each designed to target a certain segment of the market, whether it is social networking teenagers or busy businesspeople. A business’s market segments can be differentiated in many ways, depending on the business’s strengths. A local grocery store, for example, would target a geographical segment, such as families within convenient distance of their location. An online retailer importing luxury goods would target a segment defined by high-income. TARGETING: EXISTING MARKETS
Ideally, entrepreneurs should research and define their target customers before they go into business, but if they haven’t its crucial they find out who their business appeals to. Business owners often do this in the following ways: Customer research
Repeat customers are obviously the most likely to buy from the same business again, so business owners talk to their customers and find traits which unite them as a market segment. They can then tweak their marketing to maximise product, service or brand appeal. Example: Our greengrocer finds out many of her customers prefer to buy apples from a small road-side orchard just outside of town. She finds out these customers assume the apples are more nutritious than store-bought apples, even though the orchard owner doesn’t advertise any such benefits. In response, the greengrocer begins to source apples locally from a nearby BioGro-certified organic orchard and emphasises these qualities in her promotional material. Build customer profiles
Taking the process further, a business can build a customer database tracking basic information – such as where they live – as well as their buying habits. This allows businesses to...