When you’re planning your internet business, one of the important questions to ask yourself is:
‘Who is my target market?’
I’m surprised that in the blogging world a measure of success seems to be having a large number of subscribers or web site visitors. I won’t argue that if it’s purely a number’s game then the more people you can reach, the more money you can make. But perhaps there’s another way to look at it.
Maybe the goal shouldn’t be to have the largest number of subscribers, but perhaps instead to have a smaller number of engaged subscribers who are passionate about your message.
Lessons From the Financial Planning Industry
I’ve been involved in financial planning for years. In this industry many years ago, a suitable client was anyone who could fog a mirror! In recent years planners have become more focused and are specialising in different niches. They are discovering the benefits of targeting their efforts on a smaller group of people, but having greater success as a result.
By having a defined target market, they are able to tailor their marketing messages to speak powerfully to their desired clients.
Who Is Your Target Audience?
Who is your blog or internet business aimed at? If you can answer this question you’re one step of the way to being able to focus your marketing efforts in a powerful way.
Have a go at answering these questions:
- Describe your ideal client / audience
- Are they male / female?
- What ages are they?
- Is where they live important?
- What languages do they speak?
- How educated are they?
- What hobbies do they have?
- What problems or concerns do they have?
- How can you help them with their problems?
- Are they business owners?
- What web sites do they visit?
- What information do you have that they value?
This list is only designed to be a start. Ideally, you should be able to write down a paragraph or two that outlines who your target clients are, and the problems or issues they have that you can solve.
The Benefits of Having an Ideal Client Profile
Knowing who you are trying to target can be incredibly beneficial to your business.
- It stops you from getting sidetracked with selling products they don’t value.
- It gets you focused in finding or designing products that they do value.
- You can design your web site and content to speak directly to these people.
- By focusing on a niche you can become known as an expert in your field.
- By having a smaller, but more focused subscriber-base, you can get better results.
To expand on the last point, imagine if you could improve the success rate of your marketing campaigns. Whilst email and RSS are relatively inexpensive, I still prefer to have a smaller range of readers who are very interested in my topic than a wider range of readers where many are luke-warm about my topic.
In a future post I’ll speak more about Pareto’s Law (the 80/20 Rule), but you can see it applies here. If only 20% of your subscribers provide you with the bulk of your revenue, doesn’t it make sense to focus on them rather than trying to please everyone?
Let me know what you think. Do you have a target market in mind? What do they look like?
Photo Credit Chailey
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