Never Fear Defining Your Target Market

Who are your clients

Mistake #2 in Our 5-Part Series

Scared that defining your market means pigeonholing your opportunities? Don’t be. Do you know who your clients are? Have you defined your target market? The reality is that by not defining your place in the market, you’re limiting the success you can have.

A clear vision of yourself, your business, your clients, and your market means you attract more clients and more business in a more efficient manner. If a luxury goods retailer looks like Walmart, do you think those high ticket handbags and boots will fly off the shelves? Definitely not.

I once had an incredibly talented cake design artist tell me that potential customers would offer her $30 for her culinary masterpieces that were priced starting at $400. Now, don’t get me wrong here, those gorgeous cakes deserved every penny of the prices she had set but her brand was sending the message that her produce was cheap. We worked together, defined her market, redesigned her brand, and then relaunched her business with a logo, website and stunning photographs that were as sophisticated as her cakes. Can you guess what happened next? Pretty soon, she had a roster of new clients, referrals, and testimonials that she was proud of. Eventually she decided to move on from cake making but because of the brand she had build, was able to successfully sell the business.

Do you remember when the American retailing giant Target stores came to Canada a few years ago? What a story. I don’t know that I remember any other chain of stores coming in so swiftly with locations and marketing and then so very quickly and dramatically disappearing. Why? Canadians love Target. Don’t we? So why weren’t the stores successful? Well, we love American Target, as we know it when we travel to the U.S.A. — what we got was a different “Canadian” version of Target that didn’t meet our expectations. We had high hopes of discovering the exact same Target experience we already knew here at home, north of the Canada/U.S. border. The stores were sadly not that. It just goes to show you that knowing your market is key to success. Even the biggest and most recognizable brands make that fateful mistake.

If you’re not getting the right clients, it’s time to sit down and define who it is you want as clients. Then, and only then, can you determine what they really want. If you deliver your target market’s needs and wants, you will gain the clients you deserve by aligning the image you project with the market you want to serve.

You can’t afford to target everyone, and let’s face it, not everyone wants the same things. Define your target market and your business will have a higher impact.

Stay tuned next week when we discuss Mistake #3 No Formalized Systems

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