How to define your target audience

Ahhh! Finding the perfect customer. It is the million-dollar question — isn’t it?

I was just at a business lunch with a dozen or so business owners and we were each asked to share what our target customer is and do you know what most of them said? Ummm! Yep that is right you did not read wrong they stammered and said Ummm then it was followed by — anybody that needs my services.

Now you ask yourself what is the big deal? These guys aren’t picky they just want to get customers — right? Here is the problem — you need to be specific to be remembered. Now let’s say the business owner said I am looking for mothers that have children under the age of 5. It clears out the clutter and will define you in the audience’s mind. Most everybody will remember your request in the sea of Ummms.

So how do you define your target customer, can you have more then one type and what if you provide a product or service that has a lot of competition? If these questions have you scratching your head then read on.

Who is your target customer? Yeah, I know I’m supposed to answer this for you but what I am saying is write down who you think that person is. Is it a man or woman, how old, income level and stuff like that. You can even get more scientific and close your eyes and imagine the person in front of you then write it down. This can work for someone who is already in business or those about to start a business.

Next — ask yourself what benefits do we offer that our competitors do not. This helps define you even further. Let’s say you are an auto repair shop and you offer loaner cars and your competitors do not — that defines you from the other repair shops in the area.

Describe your what your business stands for in two sentences. This is also known as an elevator pitch. You briefly sum up what your all about — say it until it rolls off your tongue.

Now that we have that figured out you are still confused and say but I do not have a unique target audience what am I going to do? Create one. Let’s say you are a chiropractor and competitors surround you and you need to build a practice — here is a tip.

Target new mothers – you can purchase a targeted mailing list that will pin point these new moms. Send each mother a personalized letter and offer a play date at your office where these women can get a break from the demands of being new moms and visit with other women in a non-pressure way. Then offer them your services and see how it goes, the results will surprise you!

Now you have just created a new target market that puts you ahead of the competition for a ridiculously low cost.

Think about this and share it with your colleagues and who knows what you will be able to put in your sights!