Understanding the WHO in small business marketing

Understanding the WHO in small business marketing

For small business, having a well-defined target market is important. No one can afford to target “everyone” especially not small businesses. But even more importantly, small businesses can take on the big guys (and win) by targeting niche markets.

The biggest concern that clients have when this conversation happens, is the fear of excluding people that don’t match the specific criteria we set. When in fact, targeted marketing allows you to focus marketing budgets and messages to the specific market that is most likely to buy from you than other markets. This strategy is far more effective and a better use of budget, than the usual scattergun approach.

Uncovering the who, so the how can get to work

Before you work out how to market to your customers, you need to work out who you are marketing to. Below are some important points to think about when defining who your market is.

Look at your current customers

If you’re already in business, looking at who your current customers are and why they buy from you can give you great insight. Drill further down and look at what I like to call your “golden nugget” customers. They’re the customers that if 5 more walked through the door just like them, you would jump for joy.  Match up the commonalities between your golden nugget customers and understand why they buy from you.

Start building the person

Every solid audience profile starts with a fundamental understanding of who your audience is. Demographic profiles (i.e. “Females, married living in the Sydney”) don’t uncover the motivations a person has in actually purchasing from you. And that’s the golden ticket in marketing. By thinking about the finer details of the person, you form context. And it’s the context that helps you sell.

What’s their problem?

Your target customers have a big scary dream that keeps them awake at night. It might be a persistent problem or situation they are in. Whatever the issue, that’s your in.

Understanding the problem that brought your previous customers to you helps you recognise that motivation in others.

Where do they hang out?

Choosing the right channels to push your marketing is critical. Think about your audience’s habits. Do they read blogs? Do they prefer Facebook to Twitter? Do they open email marketing or do they prefer direct mail? Finding where your audience is hiding is crucial to make sure your marketing connects with the right audience at the right time.

How can you solve their problem?

When we start working with new clients, majority want to tell the market what their product or service does. But in actual fact you’re just rehashing features. Your target audience will engage much more if you push the benefits of your product or service. I.e. tell your customers what you can do for them. By thinking about their problems a few steps back, this step is the last to ties it all together.

Need help defining your target audience? We can help.

Let’s talk.

See you next week


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