Businesses often have difficulty determining the best groups with which to spend their marketing time and money.
Whether your company is selling business-to-business or business-to-consumer, setting your sights on the best target audiences is essential.
Identifying marketing targets should be a key initial element of your business plan, one you revisit periodically when reviewing sales results. But the process of defining your targets should be more focused than simply marketing to anyone who might buy your product or service. Chasing elusive groups that do not align well with your company’s offerings is wasteful.
The key when setting your marketing targets is to find the sweet spots. What groups will be more inclined than others to do business with you, and which are the most profitable?
These are important considerations when determining a strategy and prioritizing your efforts.
To maximize your resources, hone in on groups that are the best fit for your product or service. For example, if you’re selling a premium home-improvement service that is too expensive for most consumers, like in-ground pools, market to higher-income households.
As an example of how to apply this strategy, an in-ground pool company could buy a targeted mail list of higher-income households, which is easy to purchase. Sending direct mail to this list of higher-income households will provide a higher yield for marketing, rather than mailing to everyone.
When developing your marketing plan, the target audiences that you first identify will guide your tactic-selection process and budget allocations. In addition to direct mail, your company’s narrow or broad marketing targets may lead you to traditional media like newspapers, radio or TV, digital advertising, trade publications and shows, events and other options.
Determining the best audiences to market to also provides the opportunity to segment your messages.
You might use direct marketing to a specific income segment with a specific product they can use and afford, complemented by a more general branding campaign through radio, TV or newspaper. That’s an example of how to segment your messages and optimize your program.
When deciding where to spend your marketing resources, remember it’s not who might buy from you, but who is more likely to buy from you and who is the most profitable. Then develop your advertising plan and messages to target that buyer.
Josh Sommers is president and CEO of Focus Media, a leading Hudson Valley advertising and public relations agency. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 294-3342, ext. 303. Read his blog at www.focusmediausa.com.
By Josh Sommers
Posted Sep. 29, 2014 @ 2:00 am