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Why setting a target market saves effort

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Updated April 11, 2016
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t-shaped professional

Why setting a target market saves effort


Tim Brown

Tim Brown is the owner of Hook Agency, and strategic marketer focused primarily on driving traffic and leads for small businesses and construction companies.

So imagine you’re on a hunt, but you don’t know what for yet.. It could be antelope, it could be quail. Are you going to go up in a stand, or bring dogs? What kind of weapon will you use?

Not setting a target market is like failing to determine what you’re hunting for.

It makes it a lot harder to prepare or figure out what you’ll do when you catch that business deal you’ve been looking for. Setting a target market, and becoming really specific about your niche is the often touted.. and more often neglected part of running a company.

Why? Because something pretty comes along, but it’s not neatly inside the bounds of what your niche is..

Someone comes along and wants social media marketing – but you do e-mail marketing. Close enough! you say. Someone comes along and wants a brochure design and you do websites – and you count your good luck, I don’t even do brochures – but here someone has come to little old me, and they see I have good taste.

What’s the problem with just working into a new market?

A good business person must pivot you tell yourself. And 5 pivots later and you’ve pissed off a couple clients because not only are you only learning the new niche ‘somewhat well,’ but you’ve failed to further increase your mastery over your original jurisdiction.

t-shaped professional

Not that there’s anything wrong with that

You’re learning new things– you’re exploring, you’re a free spirit. But the T-shaped idea of being an expert – deep knowledge of at least one discipline, in just one system is incredibly important. It’s how we create a personal brand, it’s how a company creates a solid and sustaining niche.

If they build out other services than so be it, but it’s incredibly important that they know the niche that they can always go back to and that people know them for.

It’s how restaurant get known for that one dish – and stay alive for years in an insanely competitive market.

To be crystal clear on your specific niche

  • Write down your 5 best real clients or customers you’ve had in the last couple years
  • Write down the psychological principles that made those relationships thrive
  • Write down the 3 things your company does to fulfill deep psychological needs for this prime demographic
  • Write down as much as you know about these people, and start to draw circle – around the traits that make them your target market

The target market as the guide to save effort

When you’re an adolescent company – still finding your sea-legs and not quite sure if you’ll make it you try everything and anything. But when you’re an adult company, you stop ‘sowing your wild oats’ so to speak and figure out what you like. What does the bottom line like – what do the people in your organization like to do work for – what makes the most sense, and when you get the persona’s fleshed out for a target market, you can imagine scenarios when these people would be in a position to buy from you.

Through this exercise takes time, you now are able to see the types of places you need to be with your marketing, and shed the things that don’t make sense with the scenario’s you’ve outlined.

The shedding of these unnecessary efforts frees your marketing time to only do the things that make sense for the psyche’s and scenarios’ of your target market. Be brutal in cutting out everything else. This, in the end will save you time and money and make your marketing dollars go further.

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Tim Brown

Tim Brown is the owner of Hook Agency, and strategic marketer focused primarily on driving traffic and leads for small businesses and construction companies.

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