The difference between a target market vs demographic market is more than just a war of marketing buzzwords. It’s the difference between making the most of your marketing budget versus throwing a large portion of your hard-earned money to the wind.
If you’ve been involved in the marketing for your small business lately, then you are probably well aware of how difficult and frustrating it can be to get your ideal customers to respond to your promotional activity. You may be wondering how in the world are you supposed to you stand out among a growing field of competitors, all while trying to keep up with the dizzying array of new platforms, tools, and devices, not to mention, constantly shifting consumer trends.
Plus, marketing is only one part of running and growing your business…
Getting in Touch with Your Target Market vs Demographic Market
Long gone are the days of mass marketing via “stable” marketing channels, such as TV, print ads, mailers and road-side billboards. While these methods may have cost a lot of money to produce and offered poor conversion rates, they were at the same time relatively easy to implement. They also provided predictable results.
Marketing today requires a very different approach. If you want to get your customers’ attention you need to give them a more personalized experience, otherwise they’ll tune you out.
It’s not because your products or services are inferior. This trend is simply the fallout of our digitally connected world. We live in a time when an increasing amount of information and services and even products are available, often instantly, with a tap, click, or swipe on a device that’s within hand’s reach throughout the day. It’s also a time when data analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning are providing these sources of information, services, and products in an increasingly customized way to each and every consumer.
How is your small business supposed to keep up? Haven’t these trends made marketing more complicated… and more expensive?
Yes… and no.
While the amount of data you need to collect, analyze and act on may have increased, there are many platforms and tools on the market that can do a lot of the grunt work for you including data collection and analysis.
In the process, you’ll end up simplifying your marketing efforts and put your marketing dollars where they count the most. This can happen only when you bring target marketing into your business. Target marketing is also known as segmentation marketing because it involves breaking a market of existing and potential new customers into groups based on a defining set of qualities or traits. This is where demographics come in. Demographic segmentation is based on several observable and measurable characteristics, like:
- Income level
- Marital status
- Family size
Market demographics are usually the most important set of criteria used to identify your target market, and demographic marketing is ultimately more precise and more profitable than the mass marketing of the past.
But, lately, demographic knowledge alone is often not enough.
Though demographic characteristics describe a target market in terms of its socioeconomic qualities, it sheds little light onto the how and why of consumer behavior. These behavioral characteristics make up a consumer’s psychographic profile, and it includes abstract qualities, such as interests, passions, lifestyle and values.
All of these qualities taken together can then be used to create the high level of marketing and customer service personalization your customers want.
Target marketing has thus evolved to include both demographic and psychographic profiles. The more you know about your target market, the more you will be able to target your messages and promotions to the people who most want your products or services.
The Benefits of Target Marketing
Since target marketing focuses on the consumers who are most likely to purchase your products or services, you can customize your marketing activities. In the process, you will collect data that you can use to improve the customer experience, enhance your products or services, and even increase your operational efficiency.
By focusing your marketing efforts at specific market segments the promotion, pricing, and distribution of your products or services become easier and more cost effective. In other words, target marketing done right will completely upgrade your whole business.
The Top Business Intelligence Tools to Get Started with Targeted Marketing
One relatively easy way to get started with segmentation marketing is on social media. Many platforms, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram, allow businesses to target users based on market segments.
There are also a number of marketing analytics and business intelligence tools that can help you gain insight from your market data and ultimately decide which direction to take and what trends to follow.
To get an idea of what’s available, here are a few popular smart marketing tools for small businesses:
- Zoho Analytics. A self-service BI and analytics platform
- Hubspot Marketing Analytics. Measure the performance of your marketing funnel in one place with robust built-in analytics, reports, and dashboards.
- Clevertap. A robust mobile marketing solution that brings together user data from online and offline channels on one centralized platform
In short, understanding your target market will help you create a stronger overall brand message– both online and off. Plus, when you create a marketing strategy that’s specifically tailored to each consumer, they’ll receive a more personalized experience, and that means, increased sales, better reviews and more promotion among your customers’ personal network of friends, family, and peers. It’s a winning combination.