Know Your Audience: How to Define Your Target Market


I just returned to Miami from an awesome week in New York City. Something that came up over and over when I was recounting my journey of transition is how I’ve had to learn (and frankly am still learning) to network with people in Miami differently than I network in New York. Does my core message change when I engage with these two distinct communities? Not really, but the way that I present the information does.

One of core tenants of marketing is to first define your target audience. Why is this important? You must know who you are talking to and what makes them tick to be able to construct effective messaging. If you are able to do this well, you will no doubt see a remarkable uptick in sales.

For example, which of the following messages is more powerful?:

a) I made this super awesome cup and I think you should buy it.

b) I have this super awesome cup that is designed for people who bike to work, it fits in the bike’s cup holder and is specially crafted to prevent their coffee from spilling en route. Even if they hit a big bump in the road.

Here are a few questions to ask when working to define your target market:

  • Who benefits from your product / service?
  • Who is buying your product / service?
  • Who is visiting your website?
  • Who is engaging with your social media channels?

And a few questions to ask before constructing your brand message and communications strategy:

  • What are this community’s problems and how can your product / service solve them?
  • How does your product make this community’s life better?
  • Which medium is the most effective for communicating with this audience?
  • What drives this audience to make purchases?
  • Which tone will resonate with this audience?

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If you’re so excited that you think every professional that you know should have access to this information, then make sure to share this with a friend.