Any business owner or marketing consultant can attest to the importance of defining the target market of a company. In order for a business to thrive, they must understand who they are selling their service or product to. However, a target market can change based on how the business is changing. It is essential to track the shifts of your customer base in order to develop relevant marketing strategies.
A target market is a specific group of people with similar wants and needs that a specific product is aimed towards. These people will be the most interested in a specific item, service, or brand. They typically have similar demographics and lifestyles, which can obviously change with the times. Marketing professionals attempt to interest this market with specific strategies and tactics. For instance, if a brand wanted to target Generation Alpha, they would most likely utilize social media applications and incorporate trends as a marketing tactic. Businesses should not try to apply their
product to all people, since that is not realistic. Instead, it is important for a company to cater to a certain target market rather than please every possible market.
A brand may have defined their target market when first developing a business plan, but business projections are never completely accurate and will not account for shifts in demographics. Research may enhance the accuracy of marketing projections, and may be able to provide business owners a better idea of who is purchasing their products. Google Analytics is a great tool to track demographics and understand a customer base, and is a great resource when re-defining a target market. Before viewing these statistics and demographics, a company should ask a few basic questions.
First, how has the brand changed over time? This includes new products, services, marketing strategies, and overall growth. This simple question may be able to reveal an additional (or a new) target market. Even defining an upcoming tertiary market based on a new product will allow for marketers to develop strategies that best serve the new demographic. Though it is important to understand new customers and why they are interested in your brand, focusing on the central target market can show a business what they should continue. Perhaps the original target still loves a specific product, but are becoming less connected to the business due to the current marketing strategy. Evaluate this potential issue, and find where the target market is and how to reach them.
Secondly, how has the competition changed? Internally analyzing a brand is powerful, but any marketer will also know to research externally. Competitors make an enormous difference in how successful a company is, and someone will always be one step ahead of you. Be sure to research the new products and marketing tactics of competitors. This will often reveal how the company’s target market has shifted, or how they plan to change. A brand should become competitive for a specific target market before the competitor captures their complete attention.
Re-defining the target market of a business takes significant internal and external research, but will make a difference in the future of a company. Consider creating a SWOT analysis in order to understand these strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Simply creating this list shows marketing consultants how a business can continue and grow their success. After this analysis and necessary research, define the demographics of your target market. Understand what demographics and needs are new, and what markets are still interested. Refine your marketing strategy, and develop relevant techniques to interest the target market.
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