A successful start-up is built on an intricate and complex mechanism, with numerous interchangeable parts. Before launching your business per se, you have to think about your target audience, first.
This will paint a clearer picture for you when it comes to designing and implementing an effective marketing strategy, but also when it comes to finding effective ways and channels to reach your customers in an adequate manner. But more about this, below.
Your Target Audience – Why Is It Important?
All products and services available worldwide are developed based on a target audience. Knowing your customer’s demographics and their needs will make your life easier and increase your profit margins, as this allows you to adapt and implement effective marketing strategies; it will also allow you to develop your products and/or services so they meet the demands of the target audience. Let’s suppose that your target audience is formed of college students.
How do your products or services help them with their day-to-day problems, how does it promise to solve those and what is different about your product?
Your product may be suitable for a broader audience but marketing it so it fits everybody’s needs might be unnecessary, not to mention expensive. Consider an audience analysis to identify the segment that interests you but remember that your target audience is dynamic. Guide your analysis by the following questions.
- What are some problems encountered on a daily basis?
- Is there a dream product that has the potential to solve those?
- If others were having similar problems to yours, would you recommend that particular product to them, if it already existed?
- How frequently would you use the product?
The answers to these questions will give you a better idea of what products your target audience might need, what products have a real potential in the chosen customer segment. It will also allow you to pick more competent ways to reach your target customers when that problem arises.
A Referral System Will Help More Than You Anticipate
When starting a business from scratch, in a context in which few are aware of your products or services, networking seems to be the first line of action. A referral system is a perfect tool to boost your business’ potential and reach a higher number of representatives of your target audience.
Give referral codes to those who are willing to spread the good word about your products and services.
Offer incentives or discounts to the next purchase, to all parties involved. This will stimulate the referrer to find other like-minded individuals with similar needs. This strategy is a highly effective one as it will allow you to increase the number of purchase-ready leads and establish a solid network.
Use a Premium Business Directory
These days, all businesses have at least a presentation website. Besides the common marketing strategies, Google compliant web directories (those who does count when the SEO world talks about SERP – search engine rankings) allow only reputable, trustworthy business to list their official web pages in relevant categories and offer them the opportunity to be featured on the. Directories like Jasmine Directory which won eighth prizes during 2013-2014 for its editorial discretion and manually added resources (about 90 directories were reviewed each quarter) is the directory type I’d opt for.
It is mentioned in several publications as a useful directory for Google citations, since business owners may submit their address, business name, fax and phone number and more details alike (NAP). NAP (stands for Name, Address, Phone Number) and is critical for businesses wishing to rank well in the local organic search results, because search engines like Google take the data into account when determining which companies to show for geo-targeted searches.
So, several high authority directories, Jasmine included, might help your business more than anticipated. It’s not about the number, but about the editorial discretion involved of these directories. Jasmine Directory’s main purpose is to add educational and business resources known to the broad audience and bring those upfront to the public interest, locally, but also internationally.
You will identify more reliable web directories by the way they are built, the existing resources in their index, the neutrality of the entries and by how user-friendly those are. Divided into multiple categories, visitors can choose one that raises their interest. There, they will find alphabetically listed a multitude of business, but also direct links to the official pages of those.
Attend Business Events
Be attentive to what local business and corporate events take place in your area. Conferences, workshops, seminars, business exhibitions, conventions, these are perfect contexts where you can make your start-up known. Rent a booth and showcase your products and/or services, make demonstrations of how those work, engage in public speaking at those events.
This will help you holistically increase your audience and get the word around about your product or service. This has a double purpose: to make the products know to your target audience, but also attract investors who may be willing to finance your start-up.
Create Meaningful Partnerships With Other Brands
Find a brand that seems to complement your business and try to create a partnership with them. Partnerships are an extraordinary way to share with a big name the same target audience and gain popularity. A notorious business partnerships that ended up in fame is the one between the Star Wars franchise and the Covergirl makeup brand.
While the two have little in common, the makeup brand decided to launch a “Star Wars” makeup line and advertise the new limited-edition products to represent the Light but also the Dark Side.
The partnership between a franchise that targeted more representatives of the male gender with the brand whose target audience was preponderantly female was certainly an interesting one that put Covergirl under the spotlight. Find an unexpected brand with which you can partner. This will help you both to explore uncharted territories.
Business partnerships, fairs and events, being present in the online, but most importantly, knowing your target audience in-depth, these all will contribute to developing a cohesive and highly functional strategy; a strategy that will help you reach closer to them, offer the very specific products that they need and increase your profit margins. Turn your small start-up into a local celebrity with the simple pieces of advice presented above.