Analysing Your Positioning and Target Markets
To be successful in your marketing strategies, it is important you begin with the knowledge of why you are in business and where your business is positioned. Be really clear on this before you spend a single dollar, aiming to reach clients that are not the right fit for you.
To know and understand your market position, first you need to do the deep digging work in determining what value your product or service actually is to your customers. You think you know, right? Let’s take another look.
Think about your current clients:
- What problem do you solve for them? Are you proving their expert skills? Increasing their exposure in their industry? Developing their tribe? (We are big Seth Godin fans here – if you haven’t read Tribes – go read it and come back to this section!)
- What difficulty have you assisted with? Do they now feel an alliance and a sense of belonging? Confidence in their own skills? Do they feel less alone?
- How do they feel when they use your services? Relieved? Confident? Proud? A sense of life achievement? Part of something bigger than themselves?
Write down your thoughts, observations and ideas. Really dig deep until it is uncomfortable, that’s where the good stuff is. This is what you are selling and promoting, your service is the tangible product but these are the all-important non-tangible selling points that make the REAL difference.
Review exactly what support your business offers. The client knows they are signing up for a service, they can read through the fine print and the list of what they are going to receive each day/month/year. But what is included when things go wrong? What guarantees, additional services, implementation assistance, training etc are available? Can they talk to someone when they have a niggling question? Can they email a question? Can they share ideas with other users of the service to gain new knowledge and a sense of belonging?
These are as important as your service and sometimes even more important. We all know that feeling of taking a leap, putting our hard earned money down on a shiny new service to grow our business and then feeling that gnawing feeling as the service level drops off.
We feel more like a burden than a valued client as we ask yet another dumb question while we try to find the ropes. The reality is that there are no dumb questions. Everyone needs time and support as they learn new skills and this is the time when your client needs you. Be there for them! Set up strong onboarding processes, accessible support systems and have a webpage that can answer any question your clients might have right there on the page.
So who is your target market?
You know that a business cannot satisfy the wants and expectations of all consumers. We cannot be all things to all people, just the same as in our private inner lives. We have limits and boundaries if we are going to continue to thrive ourselves. Analyse your existing client base even further by segmenting your target market. This is grouping your client base into similar characteristics, wants and needs.
It is worthwhile to have already worked through the activity of identifying your ideal client. You did that when you first started the business, right? That is the process where you give them a name and picture them in your mind when you write content for your business website, industry blogs, email campaigns, press releases and social media posts.
If you didn’t do that, go do that today. There are plenty of free assessment sheets, checklists and forms online to do that with.
Once you have that outline of an ideal client, take the time to review your content, analyse your consistency across all platforms and if you have multiple writers, regularly check that your content is being communicated in an engaging consistent voice to reach those ideal clients. This is important or your marketing activity is just time and money down the drain.
Also, make sure that your own business values apply so that you know you are working with clients that are the right fit for you. Think about your own ethics, values and beliefs. If you are positioned as family values and a community-focused business you will want clients with the same values, outlook and motivations, whatever the outside label is on their business. Matching with the right clients makes work a lot more valuable as you are both on the same page, less drama and more positive achievements together.
With your identified ideal client, confirmed positioning and values check, you can now:
- design your services more closely to the sub-groups of your clients
- up-sell relevant services to the clients that need it most
- tailor your communications to the correct group
With the hard work complete on knowing who you are and who you want to sell to, you will have a renewed sense of your business position and value.
You might also remember why this business is important to you in the first place. Why do you get up every morning and hand out those business cards? Is it just to make money and upgrade your house?
Or is it because you are proud of what you have created, who you have employed and why you began?
I hope it is the latter. Find the heart of it and work from there, that is your touchstone.
If you are still struggling to find your foothold and identify the right client for you, send me a message. Professional writing means clear, accurate, consistent and concise communication each and every time to your ideal clients. We have the resources and services that can help you gain your footing and support you as you grow.
Thanks for reading,
Angela – B. Comms (Journalism & Public Relations)