Now that you’ve analyzed your competitors, it’s time to launch your shiny new product or service, right?
Before introducing your superduper product or service to new markets, you must determine your target market. Who EXACTLY would be interested to buy what you are selling?
That’s where target market analysis comes in.
In this article, I’m going to show you how to analyze your target audience. Knowing your target market will make crafting your marketing and sales campaigns easier.
Let’s dig in, shall we?
What Is Target Market Analysis?
Target market analysis is a systematic and in-depth study of your business’s potential customers—their demographics, aspirations, struggles, and all other characteristics that set them apart from other people and make them the best fit for your product or service.
This leads us to a related question...
What Is A Target Audience?
A target market aka target audience is a clearly defined group of people who are likely to buy your products or services.
Knowing your target market helps you not to use the ‘spray and pray’ marketing strategy. You won’t just market to anyone you bump on and hope for the best.
Your marketing will be hyper-focused because you know who you are selling to.
4 Benefits Of Target Market Analysis
Why should you bother about target market analysis?
There are many reasons but I will give you the four supreme ones:
1. Target market analysis helps you sharpen your marketing communications.
Assessing who your business serves helps your marketing message and positioning. Your messaging becomes aligned and more precise. Such messages laser-sharp are more likely to elicit a positive response from people.
2. Target audience analysis ensures your pitches resonate with potential customers.
Prospects identify with hyper-specific marketing campaigns. Because these personalized messages hit home in prospects' hearts and minds. People are more likely to respond to them and buy your product or service.
3. Target market analysis saves your brand money.
No business, no matter how big, has an unlimited marketing budget. Businesses that understand their target market don’t throw cash around. They are deliberate in their budget allocations. They only allocate scarce resources to their target audience, saving you money in the process.
4. Target audience analysis improves customer management.
After you identify your target market and their needs, it’s easier to give them what they want. You manage all customer interactions better. This delights your customers. And happy customers buy more and stay with your brand longer.
Here are other benefits of having a clear target market.
How To Define And Analyze Your Target Audience In 6 Simple Steps
Now that you know the benefits of understanding your target consumers, let’s dive into specific steps you must take to identify and assess your target market.
1. Conduct Market Research
To find and understand customers interested in what you sell, conduct market research.
Because I’ve already covered market research in Chapter 3, I’ll give you a few reminders.
In short, target market analysis gives your marketing a bullseye to aim at.
2. Analyze Your Product Or Service
You created your product or service with someone in mind, right?
To understand your target market, go back to the time where you were dreaming about launching your business venture. Businesses don’t spring out of the blue. There’s a burning passion and motivation that inspired you to create a product or service. Think deeply about what sparked your business dream.
Ask yourself the following questions:
Asking these questions will narrow down the market segments you might serve.
You can go a step further.
Do a practical exercise that’ll help you zero in on your target. List all the benefits of your product or service. For each benefit, identify a group of potential customers who can profit the most from it.
3. Dissect Your Current Customers
Your existing customers can give you clues about your target market and who you should focus on in your marketing campaigns.
But we are not talking about any customer here.
To pinpoint your target market, scour your customer base to unearth your best customers. This leads us to the question: best in terms of what?
Your best customers:
To get maximum value from these customers, conduct a target market audit with them.
Use the tactics I spoke about in the market research chapter: surveys, interviews, questionnaires, and focus groups. We won’t hap on them.
But what do you ask them?
Once you understand the anatomy of your best customers, compile a meticulous customer or buyer persona for your business and use it to look for more prospects with similar qualities.
Because you’ve done all the hard work up front, you will get more conversions and sales.
4. Dig Into Demographics And Psychographics
Another way to understand your would-be customers is to evaluate their demographic info. In case you are wondering, demographics are basic characteristics of a person as described by the population stats.
These characteristics include:
Such facts are crucial in getting to know your target demographic. You can get this data from the U.S. Census Bureau site. While demographic information goes a long way in helping you understand your target audience, there’s something better: psychographics.
Demographics tell you who a person is and what they are or do. On the flip side, psychographics reveals the why of a person. What drives their behavior? These psychological characteristics go deeper than demographic attributes.
Psychographic factors cover:
In marketing, psychographic factors are critical. They help you appreciate your target market at a deeper level. While cursory surface-level facts are helpful in marketing, deep emotional matters and values are more valuable in helping you sway consumer behavior.
Demographics and psychographics are a formidable team.
The two aspects complement each other perfectly. Use them to gain valuable insights into your target customers and enhance the chances of your business success.
5. Create Market Segments And Customer Profiles
Once you dial in your ideal market demographics and psychographics, you are ready for the next step.
Grouping them according to their needs.
A business that uses a blanket marketing approach doesn’t close any sales. It pays to narrow your targeting by subdividing your target market into smaller groups according to their shared traits. This makes your offers more targeted. So you generate more revenue for your business.
There are five types of market segmentation:
Since we’ve already covered demographics and psychographics, let's unpack the remaining three segmentation types.
Behavioral segmentation looks at customers’ purchase behavior.
It covers the following:
Which prime product benefits do they desire the most? You can then focus on highlighting these in upcoming campaigns to hike conversions.
Who uses the product frequently, occasionally, or doesn’t use it at all?
You can then dig deeper into the shared characteristics of each group and tailor your marketing strategy to each one.
On which occasions does your customer base prefer to purchase your products? With occasion segmentation intel at your disposal, you can craft product promos around the occasion.
How long do typical consumers spend on their buyer journey? Use this research to optimize your process so they go through faster?
Next is geographic segmentation.
As I said earlier, this is grouping people according to their location. People who live in the same location have homogeneous characteristics.
Geographic segmentation is an easy yet powerful way to penetrate new markets.
Here is an example of geographic segmentation.
Each group represents people with similar interests, needs, and wants. You can survey the geographic unit you want to break into and localize your promotions to match their needs. If you are selling to many areas or regions, it’s important to note geographical differences in needs and preferences.
Lastly, let’s explore firmographic segmentation.
Firmographics is demographics for companies.
If you are a small business owner that targets other businesses, this is the segmentation strategy you should use. A company that uses firmographic segmentation groups prospects based on funding, size, and scale.
To find the right company to target, you can group businesses using these variables:
Where can you find firmographic data?
There are many sources you can tap from.
First, you can search for info from trade journals. Each industry has leading journals packed with the latest data and trends. Another easy online source you can glean data from is federal and state government websites. You could always conduct a survey to collect firsthand data about your B2B competitors and target market.
After determining the type of segmentation you will use, move to the next step.
Create a buyer persona for each of your customer segments. To make the whole thing fun, name your personas to make them memorable to your team, e.g. Techy Terry, Fussy Fiona, Advocacy Andy, Foodie Philip, etc.
Here is an example of a buyer persona for a coffee shop targeting students.
With such a detailed persona, marketing becomes a breeze. The brand’s chances of success skyrocket.
6. Find Out Who Buys From Your Competitors
Finally, you can stalk your competition for precious nuggets about your target audience.
Study these strategic aspects:
Pick up how they position themselves to win customers. How do they differentiate themselves from everyone on the market? Which gender or age group are they trying to win over? Which group of customers does their market positioning miss? Can you cater to them?
Dig into their pricing strategy. Who are they trying to sell to? Is it monied premium buyers or budget-conscious who worry about cost? For example, if they focus on premium goods you can create lower-priced alternatives for the cash-strapped segments.
Social Networks Pages
Follow them on social platforms to eavesdrop on their conversations with their audience. What do consumers like? Is there a feature everyone is demanding? Also, note what they hate so you avoid it in your product development or marketing efforts.
Online reviews and testimonials are rich sources of target market data. Scour through competitors’ online reviews to see your target market adores and abhors to adjust target them more accurately.
It’s all about understanding your target buyers’ needs and tastes.
If you pick any weakness in the way the competition serves the audience, you could create related products that satisfy those underserved needs. Analyzing your competitor’s audience helps you determine if you are targeting a saturated market. Then you can go in a different direction and look for a hungry market.
Target Market Analysis Toolbox
To perform your target analysis job well, you need the right tools.
Without access to the right tools, your best intentions will fail. Here’s your target market analysis toolbox with everything you need to do a splendid job.
1. Google Analytics
Understand the makeup of your audience: demographics, age/gender, product-purchase interests, industry, and potential/actual target location.
2. CRM Platforms
Customer Relationship Management platforms store your customer base info: contact info, contract size, purchasing data, demographic data, and more.
3. Similar Web
Deep market insights into your market, including sales and shopper intelligence, traffic sources, audience interests, and competitors.
4. Social Media Platforms Analytics
Get fresh data about your target market from native analytics features on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or wherever your audience frequents.
Get live insights into your audience purchase behaviors, browsing interests, domain affinity, occupations, devices, and more.
6. United States Census Bureau
Gain access to info about a particular population group: city and state, age, ethnicity, education, income, housing, and more.
7. Pew Research Center
Get revealing data about social and demographic trends, global attitudes, and internet usage.
Grab these tools and similar ones to dig up all you can about your target market.
Target Market Analysis: A Vital Step To Business Success
Those are my best tips and resources for doing a target market analysis.
Target analysis insights are key for building a business that succeeds beyond your wildest dreams.
It helps you streamline your marketing processes, make smart decisions, and squeeze every ounce of value from all your marketing campaigns.
But remember that audiences change and grow.
So target market analysis is a moving target and never ends.
Last Updated on February 6, 2022 by Hanson Cheng