How to Establish Your Target Audience for Best
Business Decisions

September 25, 2019

On paper, a broad target audience seems like a good idea.  After all, your marketing opportunities are almost unlimited if you target your entire city or state, and that will theoretically lead to more sales. 

Unfortunately, the marketing world does not really work that way.  You are not going to design a product that every customer in the state needs or wants.  And having an abstract target market does not allow you to customize your product and your campaign for the people that truly want it.  Therefore, it is important that you establish a specifically defined market.  Once you do so, you will be able to tailor your product, market in meaningful ways and maximize profits.  You will also reduce stress for your marketing team because they will not have to constantly change the campaign for different segments of the market.

         How should you identify and establish your target audience?  Begin by evaluating which customers use your products the most.  More than likely there will be a specific demographic that you get most of your business from and who reports the most satisfaction with your products.  Data analytics, as well as focus groups and personal interactions with clients, can help you figure these things out. Note that narrowing down your audience does not mean excluding customers that do not fit your target description.  You are simply using the techniques that your target audience will appreciate the most while also capturing small parts of the rest of the market.  After you have figured out which segments of your audience you want to focus on, use analytics and other research to discover what type of marketing they prefer.  Older markets will probably prefer more traditional advertising, such as on television, and younger markets will prefer personalized content and mobile marketing.  Different demographics have different tastes, so it is important to know your target and their preferences before making any critical campaign decisions. 

         In addition to evaluating your current customers, evaluate your competitors and their target market as well.  You will probably not be able to approach your competitors and ask them how they get leads.  But you can get a general sense of the approach they take by looking at their social media pages and seeing how many responses and followers they get using their current tactics.  If they have a lot of followers and are engaged with their audience, it says that they are doing something right, and you should aim to mirror their tactics while personalizing them in your own way.  On the other hand, if their page is weak and they do not have a lot of engagement, it is a sign that you should probably stay away from whatever they are doing

         Once you have established your target audience, keep them in the loop throughout your relationship with them.  Use data analytics to track the latest trends in your industry and allow your customers to voice their opinions as well.  While you are focusing on the financial side of your business, you may inadvertently miss a new marketing method that has just come out or something a competitor invented that may drive down your sales.  Your customers can keep you informed about everything that is going on in the world outside your company, and they will be inclined to do so if you establish a personal relationship with them from the start. 



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