Why Choosing The Right Target Market Matters?

Many years ago after I exited the retail business, I chose to become a business consultant to help small businesses grow. I was pretty good at marketing, and have been doing it most of my life. I chose to target small business at the time.

Once I set up my marketing funnel, I started getting several inquiries. Many of them wanted my services, but very few had the ability to pay.

That’s when I shifted focus. I started targeting bigger clients with deep pockets, the ones who were willing to make an investment in return for value. It’s like selling a Mercedes in a poor neighborhood; sometimes all it takes is to take your services to a better paying market.

Recently, a friend of mine, Kavitha Garla, who sells training programs, asked me, “I want to sell public speaking programs to college students. How do you recommend selling them?” She does offer some nice coaching programs, the sales copy looked pretty good and pricing seemed reasonable.

Now, I’m thinking, is it the right audience?

Personally, I’m not sure if college students have the money. Most of them are budget shoppers. Unless it’s a great deal on beer, a Justin Bieber concert, or a movie, I doubt if they’d be interested.

It might be a better strategy to focus on professionals who have the money and are looking to become better speakers so that they can be more valuable to their organizations.

The sales copy will also vary based on the target audience.

What I look for when choosing a target market?

  1. Do they have the money? Can they afford my product?
  2. Are they already buying similar products? It’s easier to sell a sandwich to someone who’s already buying sandwiches rather than introduce and educate them about a new product.
  3. Do I have some sort of unfair advantage over my competition? It could be access to an audience, or some special skill that only me and my organization has.

Some common mistakes

One of the most common mistakes I see even experienced marketers make is that they are trying to target their sales copy to several different audiences. Your sales copy is going to be different for different audiences.

I suggest that you have one sales copy for one target market. If you want to sell the same product to different audiences, try different copy.

Basic Audience-Value Template that has worked for me

This is a basic template that will help you focus your efforts and offering. (I learned this from a popular training program, and it has stayed with me ever since.)

We help __________ [Target audience] become/do __________ by _______so that___

Example: We help CEOs become better individuals by providing information products that enrich their lives personally and professionally so that they can achieve their goals and increase shareholder value.

It’s nice to help people and businesses that have a need, but if you want to be profitable, it’s important to choose your target market wisely.


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