“It’s not the plan that is important, it’s the planning.” Dr. Graeme Edwards
This is a very important quote to consider when thinking about why some businesses succeed, while others fail. In fact, it is estimated that 50% of businesses fail due to lack of planning. Planning spans a mirage of things, including considering your customer’s needs. If you’re not on the cusp of what your customer wants, you might miss the mark, causing your business to fail.
Failure–such a tough concept to tackle but one that must be considered if you are to succeed!
With failure a possibility, how does one create a successful, sustainable business? Simple. Get to know your target audience and CONTINUALLY get to know them.
But what does that look like from a realistic point of view?
Step One – Gather the Data
The first thing you need to do is gather your sales and marketing data, and commit to sitting behind a laptop at Starbucks for a few hours. While sipping on your drink of choice and analyzing the data, be on the lookout for peak sales times, offers that worked (generated the desired outcome) and/or what was purchased most and by what demographic.
Everyone’s list of KPI’s (key performance indicators) is going to look different, however, the idea remains the same–you’ll want to look for what is/isn’t working in your business before you can move on to Step 2.
Step Two – Get to Know the Data
Next, you’ll want to empathize with your target market if you are going to make any sort of impact on their purchasing decisions. Empathy maps can help with this. With empathy maps, you’ll use qualitative data to help paint a clear picture of what your target audience is seeing, feeling, hearing, doing and saying on a day-to-day basis.
This kind of information, in conjunction with your marketing and sales data (quantitative data), will help you connect the dots that will help you better define your target market. Going over this data regularly will help you stay in touch with your audience’s changing needs.
Step Three – Take a Step Back
What if you don’t know who you’re talking to (demographically speaking)? Surveys, interviews, google analytics, social media sentiments, sales data and other market research tactics such as these are all great ways to start gathering primary data! They’ll help you gain the demographic information you need to know who you’re empathizing with.
There are many other secondary ways to go about gaining demographic information; just be aware you’ll need to have your demographic information concrete before you can begin empathy mapping. Ideally, this will include a mix of both secondary and primary data.
Step Four – Consult an Expert
Need help putting all the pieces together? We have a one-hour webinar coming up February 9th, 2017 at 12 pm MST talking all about target markets. We’ll walk you through the process so that you can better respond, relate, and resonate with your target audience. Early bird pricing ends February 6th, so register today by going to www.peppershock.com/webinars. Use promo code Melissa30 to save 30% off admission.
Likewise, if you have any questions about any of the above, please feel free to shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.