According to a survey, 6 in every 10 small businesses have no online presence or website, and 19 percent of those small business owners have no plans to build an online presence, yet expect their business to grow by at least 25 percent over the next three to five years. In today’s tech-centered world, having a website and online presence is a crucial part of business growth and a major part of effective marketing. Without a website and online presence, marketing becomes less effective since it becomes significantly more difficult to reach and interact with your target market.

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When you’re doing any marketing, whether it be SEO, PPC, social media, or any other kind, knowing your target market is key. Not only should you know the gender you’re targeting, the age group you want to reach, and their income level, but you’ll also want to know a lot of other information, like their location, their hobbies, what channels they use to communicate, and more. Just trying to target anyone who you think might be interested in your product or service isn’t enough, you have to narrow your target market down and get to know that if you want your marketing efforts to be more rewarding and effective.

How can you better get to know your target market? Below are just a few ways that can help you hone in on who it is you’re trying to reach and help you better reach them.

Look at Your and Your Competitors’ Customers

When trying to get to know your target audience better, one of the best things you can do is to look at the existing customers that you have (and the customers your competition has), evaluating why they’re purchasing. As you look for and analyze the similarities between the customers you already have, you’ll start to get a better picture of what they look like, where they live, and even why they’ve chosen you and your company.

Consider Who and How Your Product or Service Helps

Once you have an idea of who your existing customers are, you should start to consider who else your product or service might help and how. For example, if you repair roofs, then you know that homeowners in your local area are a large part of your target market, but commercial building owners may be too. And understanding that your service can help them save money on damage and repairs that may be done by the weather may help you better focus your messaging and more effectively reach your target market.

Look into Psychographics Once You Know Your Demographics

Not only should you understand the demographics of your existing and target marketing, but once you have a good handle on the demographics, you’ll want to start looking into and considering psychographics as well. Psychographics include things like the attitudes, opinions, hobbies, behaviors, and values of your target market and using psychographics can help you be significantly more effective in not only attracting customers but retaining them as well.

Ask Questions (to Both Existing and Almost Customers)

Getting to know your target market is not hands-off work. To get to know them, you’ll want to talk to and interact with them. One of the best ways to do that is to ask them questions that will help you get to know them better and better understand their needs. You can ask sales questions to understand what they’re looking for, and you can ask questions to get an idea of where and how you can improve to make their experience better.

You shouldn’t only be asking existing customer these questions, though. Reaching out to and asking customers who almost but didn’t purchase from you, or customers who are considering a purchase can give you insight that will be more effective than just asking existing customers questions.

Keep an Eye on Chatter

Another great way to get to know your target market is to keep an eye on the chatter that goes out about your company and product or service. Monitoring social media channels and keeping an eye on what’s being said about you can give you an idea of the areas in which you need to improve and help you get insight into what it is your customers and potential customers already like about you. This, combined with asking customers direct questions is a great way to get to know them better and get a better handle on what it is that they’re looking for.

Final Thoughts

Knowing and understanding your target market is extremely important if you want your marketing efforts to be as effective as they can be. While it’s easy to get basic information about your target marketing, digging in and taking the time to get to know them better will help you not only market and sell more effectively but can help you better retain customers as well.

What other ways have you tried to get to know your target market better?