Much has been written on how to locate and define your target market. However, there is a problem with this process. Once you have defined that target market, you’re probably completely overwhelmed with all the details and facts you have collected about this target market and have absolutely no idea about how to use this information.
Rather than trying to cover all characteristics of your target market in your marketing efforts, pick out a dozen or so traits of your target market and create a target market profile that is a description of one member of your target market. For example, my target market profile is a 50-year-old female solo business owner with grown children who sells products and services via her website from the comfort of her home office with the help of one virtual assistant. Do other types of people join my membership site? Yes, they do, including women of other ages, men interested in Internet marketing, and individuals still employed full-time for a company who want to transition to a full- or part-time online business owner.
However, I’ve discovered it’s much more effective to market to one person at a time (i.e. one target market profile) rather than to try and include all the characteristics of a group of people. Consequently, I write all of my online marketing copy with this one person in mind. That’s why creating a target market profile helps. This succinct description of one member of your target market will serve as the person to whom all of your marketing copy is targeted, whether that copy is appearing as a sales letter, your website homepage, or a description of an upcoming training session.
Take a few moments and create a picture of your target market in your mind. Give your profile a name so that it seems you’re talking to a real, live person. Perhaps you base the description on the traits of one of your favorite clients or consider these traits as you create your profile:
- marital status
- family status
- where they live (city/country and house/apt)
- annual income
- hobbies and interests
- clubs/organizations in which s/he is active
- goals and aspirations
When you’ve completed your profile, print it out and tape it to your monitor or tack it to your bulletin board. Find an image from a magazine or online source that seems to mirror your description and attach that to your written description. Now you’ve got an imaginary friend to whom you sell and market. Bet you thought you were done with imaginary friends! 🙂
Here’s an example of an effective target market profile:
Stacy Stiles is a 43-year-old married female solo entrepreneur with a professional organizing business. She’s fairly Internet-savvy and very business-savvy, having been a professional organizer for over 7 years. She invests about 50% of her profit back into her business and pays herself the remainder. She lives in a middle-class neighborhood in a bedroom community outside Seattle with her 2 teenage children, Aiden and Emily, one dog, Isaboo, and her husband, David, who owns a landscaping business. She’s involved in her children’s education and activities, attending Aiden’s basketball games and Emily’s Junior ROTC drills. She works from her home office and makes approximately $85,000/year. She jogs 3 times a week to keep herself in shape for the 2 marathons she participates in each year. She loves to go antiquing and checking out the latest art festival in her community. Her big dream is to go to Greece with her husband someday.
Take a few hours to construct your target market profile. You’ll find your marketing becomes so much easier when you are writing it with one particular “person” in mind.