Every business plan must include specific details and decisions that ensure communications and marketing strategies reach a target market to drive strong sales and long-term sustainability. If an entrepreneur fails to define the target market early on, there is an increased risk of disjointed operations or inconsistent decision making that can reduce efficiency and harm profits. When a company is able to define exactly who its products or services are designed for and can select communication channels to reach them through, then the audiences can be researched for deeper insight into their purchasing behaviors, preferences and values.

Business builders must first define their target market then build off this information to create strong marketing campaigns that work diligently to reach clients through preferred communication portals. Younger clients, for example, may prefer digital communications over snail mail or traditional advertisements. Understanding where target markets research their purchasing options or complete their transactions will make it easier to communicate new products or services to them directly. Entrepreneurs have limited resources and manpower at their disposal to leverage when driving business. Therefore, you cannot afford to waste time or money marketing to the wrong prospects and must pay more attention to potential clients that offer the greatest opportunity for profits.

When digging deeper into information on target demographics to gain understanding of key clients, entrepreneurs must look past superficial data. Of course a local business will be catering to residential clients nearby, but what specific markets will offer the greatest purchasing potential and how can this information be used to launch your presence online? Breaking down target market information can include researching educational background, marital status, ethnicity, occupation, income level, social media activity, personal interests and values to create your ideal client(s) profile(s). More than just the general age and location of a client, looking into the individual and what motivates them to purchase will help layout successful marketing strategies and keep you focused for long-term growth.

How do you optimize information on your target market?

You want to dig deep to understand the preferences of the target market population. Beyond determining who would benefit most from a product or service, entrepreneurs should review who has made purchases in the past and what trends have occurred. These data points can be determined by business reports or analyzing the performance of competitors already established in the market. An entrepreneur can guess at a target market, but may overlook a small segment of the population that might show interest unexpectedly. Look at what types of clients have already made purchases to either broaden or narrow the target market and retrace what efforts may have attracted these demographics to the company in the first place. Understanding what efforts they responded to will help increase effectiveness of future strategies. Asking your existing ideal clients to provide introductions to their own network can also unearth new markets that meet the demographic and psychographic qualities of your ideal client. So too can working with collateral professionals who can act as referral sources for your business and help you identify new areas of opportunity.

If you want to get serious about focusing on strategically building and growing your business, sign up for our upcoming Business Builder Playbook program cohort. When you join, you get access to a peer-to-peer coaching program that gives you a roadmap to grow your business and achieve and sustain peak performance.