Businesses often make the mistake of trying to attract as many customers as possible, but this inefficient strategy costs the company time and money. It is better to target and reach individuals who are most likely to want and use your product or service. An important part of building a successful business involves developing a target marketing strategy that focuses on identifying the right audience and determining the best way to reach them. Here is how to identify and target the right audience.

Analyze Current Customers

A great source of information for identifying the correct primary target audience is your current customer base. Analyze information you have about who they are, where they live, the products or services they buy, where they purchase and why they choose you. Look at factors influencing their purchase decision. Focus on your best customers and determine whether they share any common characteristics.

Undoubtedly your current sales and marketing systems can provide a vast amount of this and other customer data. If your company has not already done so, consider CRM integration to create a powerful and rich source of information about your business and customers.

Examine the Competition

Examine your competition to understand who they are targeting. If you want to compete head on with them, you need to know what they are doing differently that might help you improve your targeting strategy. At the same time, you may discover that there is a gap in the market, and you can create a niche for your product or service.

Identify Key Values

Understand what attributes your ideal customer values. You want to identify the customer who can maximize profit for your company, but this may not simply be the consumer who purchases the highest cost items. Loyal customers who purchase a substantial volume at a lower cost may be more profitable. Beyond price, knowing how customers value attributes such as service, product quality, expertise and reputation are also important in determining your target audience. You also want to leverage the dynamics and values within your organization. Company energy, creativity and capabilities are critical inputs for product development, selling and providing the best customer experience, so make sure the target audience is compatible with the organizational culture.

Profile the Ideal Customer

The results from analyses of current customers and competition, along with the information on key values provide you with the pieces to define an ideal primary customer. This detailed buyer persona should include demographic characteristics, what products are most important to them, their motivations and values. A comprehensive outline of the ideal customer will make it easier for you to adjust your business model and branding to successfully target this audience. At this point you may also want to circle back and examine which of your current clients are a good fit with this target persona.

Content Marketing

Once you have identified your target audience, useful and relevant content is how you will reach them. Most people are overwhelmed with information, so you want to put something in front of the customer that will resonate and help your company stand out. Make sure content speaks to your ideal customer’s needs and shows what your product or service can do for them. Blog posts, articles and video are all effective content marketing tools, but whatever you use make certain it is engaging and appropriate for your target audience. Your company website is a great place to display content. The prevalent consumer and business use of social media sites makes them ideal tools to reach your target. Whether it is LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or all the above, social media marketing is an absolute must in today’s world.

Targeted Advertising

Paid digital advertising is a relatively cost-effective way to get your business message in front of the right target audience. The social media sites and Google Ads provide tools that give you the ability to target your audience based on demographic characteristics, location and the interests of the viewers.

Identifying the right customer for your product or service and developing a strategy to reach them are key to building a successful business. However, it is not a fixed process. Monitor the environment and periodically re-evaluate the situation to ensure the profile of your ideal customer is still a good fit with the company business model and values.