Think about the last time you gave someone a gift. Odds are you didn’t give the person the same gift you had given to your spouse a few months ago. In fact, we’re going to guess you likely don’t give the same gift to everyone. You personalize it. You look at something in the store and think your friend or spouse or whoever could really use something like this.
And that’s exactly the way you should approach marketing. There isn’t a one-size-fits all mantra here.
Audience segmentation is going to ensure your focus and message comes across clearly and effectively. A market segment is a group of people (or organizations) who have a few qualities in common, meaning they have the same product needs.
Think about it this way: You can’t live without water. Everyone needs to drink water. But does everyone need a glass of it? What about a bottle? In order to successfully reach your clients, you have to divide your market in recognizable segments through the process of audience segmentation.
The whole idea behind dividing markets into recognizable groups is for your marketing team. They need to create a personalized marketing mix for your specific group.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say a farmer offers organic produce. While it’s expensive, it’s a higher quality because of its organic makeup. However, not everyone wants to buy – or can afford – organic produce. So if the farmer uses his budget to advertise to masses, he will exhaust money quickly. Rather, he needs to zero in on his target market and come up with a marketing campaign that will speak directly to those customers. He came up with his target audience: Women between the ages of 20-60, who made over $50,000 a year. This group is concerned with pesticides and focus on healthy eating. He kicked up his marketing plan by putting ads in local women’s magazines, as well as with a local gym.
If this farmer had targeted any and everyone, it would have been no market segmentation. On the flip side, if he had decided to target everyone based on their own individual factors, that would be called fully segmented marketing. Instead, he focused on his audience as a whole and made sure each person received a personalized yet effective message regarding his product.
So why is this important? To put it simply, your company will not stay afloat if your marketing strategy is targeting an entire mass. Rather, the idea behind audience segmentation is to allow your business to reach out to a certain customer with a certain need and want. The short and long-term benefits of doing this are never-ending. You can use your resources much more effectively and make better decisions when it comes to your marketing.
Going back to the farmer example: The farmer isn’t going to waste his marketing budget on ads on television or in big chain grocery stores. Rather, he knows that his organic produce is a specialized target market. He has to use his budget successfully and carefully.
Needless to say, one of the biggest benefits of audience segmentation and targeting is the fact that you will be spending your marketing budget effectively. Another perk: Having a segmented strategy – one that is based around customer loyalty – is going to attract new customers. This can be a major plus especially with starter products – you can easily steer these new customers to bigger, premium options.
Another bonus: Over time, it’s inevitable that customers will change their needs and preferences. However, if your organization serves different segments throughout the customer’s business, you will always be offering them a unique solution to their specific needs. A perfect example of this is beauty products. The best brands offer a special set for babies, then teens, then adults, then the elderly. It covers all the basis of a life cycle and also strengthens the relationship between the customer and the company.
Trying to zero in on your specific audience through the process of segmentation can be one of your biggest career challenges – it’s critical to your company’s success to get it right the first time. One easy way to do this is to enlist the help of a company such as PersonaBold. They’re help you focus your marketing campaign while spelling out your audience segmentation and where your target focus needs to go.