We all have that old t-shirt that is so comfy we don’t want to get rid of it. But after awhile, it probably doesn’t fit anymore or starts getting holes in it. The same goes for your target market.
Are you still using the same target market profile you used five years ago? Two years ago? If you are, it might be time to re-evaluate.
Have you segmented your target market? Or is it a “one size fits all”? When marketing was simply running a newspaper ad, having a detailed view of your target was not as important. Basic demographics did the trick. But with today’s digital mediums, it is more important than ever to not only know the demographics of your customer, but what makes them tick. Every user of your product or service has needs, preferences, and behaviors; and they all factor into how you design your marketing mix and messaging to make the most impact.
The key factors in determining market segments include:
- Geographic location/type
- Demographics such as age, sex, income, occupation
- Psychographics such as lifestyle, hobbies, opinions
- Behavioral factors such as brand loyalty, purchase patterns and intensity of use
However, it is important to remember that too many segments will only confuse customers and cannibalize your success. To effectively segment your target ask these five questions:
- Homogeneous – Are the customers of the potential segment similar in some relevant way?
- Substantial – Is the segment large enough in potential to warrant attention?
- Accessible – Is the segment accessible in terms of distribution and communication?
- Actionable/Practical – Can a distinctive marketing mix be implemented for the segment?
- Responsive – Will the segment respond better to a distinctive marketing mix than it would to a generic offering?
By segmenting your targets into personas you will better serve your customers needs and wants, create opportunities for growth, sustain your customer relationships through all phases of the customer life cycle and ultimately create a better return on your marketing investment.