There are certain well-known principles in marketing which, though they can seem a bit like a broken record, are generally accepted as true, and one of the most popular of these is, “know your customers.” Great advice – but no one ever seems to explain how to do this. Until now, that is. Here are a few marketing tips that can help you have a better understanding of your customers and, as a result, can help you tailor your business to them.
Narrow your target demographic.
How often do you hear a salesperson say their product can be useful for anyone? This may be true for your company, but realistically, you won’t be able to market to all demographics at the same time. Instead, try really focusing in on a more specific demographic, like full-time mothers between the ages of 30 and 50. Just be careful not to target this group so closely that it offends or alienates your other potential consumers. You can also try using more specific marketing campaigns which speak to one group at a time. For example, if you’re running a plastic surgery practice, during one quarter you can have a campaign promoting tummy tucks for those mothers between the ages of 30 and 50, and the next quarter you can have a social media marketing campaign regarding rhinoplasty for single, career-focused adults.
Analyze a wide variety of data.
It’s time to go beyond the basics of figuring out the ages, income levels, and neighborhoods of your best customers. Instead, look at behavioral characteristics, values, attitudes, and more. This goes hand-in-hand with that narrowed demographic we talked about, because focusing on a more specific group of people can help you develop a more well-rounded profile.
Don’t just identify one key priority – have a weighted list.
Generally speaking, people aren’t robots – we don’t walk around with one specific mission on our minds, disregarding everything else. If all that data you’ve found tells you that your target customers’ top priority is price, you might react by reducing the resources you put toward customer relationship management or on the niceties and extras you offer in order to slash your price. Unfortunately, no one has just one priority, and you could lose your customers to a competitor who treats them better, even if their services are slightly more expensive than yours.
Go beyond the data and put in plenty of facetime with your current customers.
We’ve talked a lot so far about analyzing information, but don’t start hibernating in the back office with your spreadsheets. Knowing your current customers can go a long way toward understanding the future customers you’re trying to pull in, so be friendly with customers. Use casual conversations to glean what features of your business they like, what they wish was different, and what’s important to them. Just avoid getting overly personal or pestering them so much that you become disrespectful of their time.
Become a member of the community.
We’re not necessarily saying you need to sell your house in the next city over and move next door to your business – just get involved in the community around your company. Pay attention to local news to see what’s important to the neighbors, participate in local charity events and festivals, and know what’s going on locally. Not only does this help your customers get to know and trust you, but it can also give you some valuable insight into their day-to-day concerns, needs, and wishes.
As true as it is, we recognize that “know your customers” is much easier said than done. But using tips like these and taking a few steps at a time to build your understanding of your target audience can go a long way toward gaining customers who are loyal and whose needs you’re ready and able to meet. To discuss how we can help you identify and reach your consumers, schedule a meeting with McCauley Marketing Services. Or, for more marketing tips and to learn more about the services we offer, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.