How to Identify Your Target Market. The creation of a quality product is not enough to vault your business to the top of your industry. You need to identify your target market, whether it is a specific geographical location or a particular age group interested in your products. When you identify your target market, you minimize wasted funds and develop a customer base that can sustain your business for years to come.
Find the Right Customers for Your Business
Utilize focus groups to determine which demographic groups and markets find your products appealing. A focus group is essentially an interview between a member of your company and 6 to 12 average consumers about the quality of your products and services. Review typical focus group questions and activities at websites like Free Management Library (see Resources below).
Travel to competing stores and businesses to do some preliminary market research. You should keep a particular eye on the types of products that consumers are interested in. This inexpensive form of market research helps you determine where marketing efforts and demographic groups meet in real life.
Aim your initial marketing efforts at a variety of consumers through the use of guerrilla marketing. Guerrilla marketing efforts include street teams that raise awareness of a particular business and impromptu events in public areas involving your products. You can determine which markets find your advertising most appealing while developing new markets through this innovative marketing tool.
Send out online surveys to past customers to gauge their satisfaction with your service. You should include optional demographic questions like age, income level and profession in order to gain insight into which markets are most successful.
Speak with friends, family and colleagues in different demographic groups about your products. This informal market research should yield a frank discussion of why your product fails in certain markets while you identify groups that are not being reached by your advertising.
Assess and identify how your product will grow with your target markets and demographic groups over the next few years. You should discuss whether your product is applicable across a variety of age groups. The result of this discussion should be a decision about whether your product should be broadened to help more consumers or narrowed to secure new consumers in a specific market.
Remain flexible in your approach to targeting your company's ideal market. Consumers are often placed into general categories like age, gender and income level but people fall into much narrower fields. You should pursue niche marketing and sales in order to cultivate loyalty from customers overlooked by other companies.