5 Common mistakes small businesses make with their target market

5 Common mistakes small businesses make with their target market

target audience strategies

And the target marketing strategies you can use to avoid them

In the beginning, it’s easy to make mistakes with your target market.

You’re excited to jump straight into promoting your business to as many people as you can. However, sometimes it’s also done without stopping to consider if your activities are attracting the right type of clients for your small business.

It can also lead to you working with people whom you didn’t want to take on as clients.

Which isn’t great, hey?

 

target marketing strategies to avoid common mistakes

 

Defining your target market is an essential part of your marketing strategy and a significant factor you need to get right.

 

Defining your target market is an essential part of your marketing strategy and a significant factor you need to get right. #targetmarket Click To Tweet

 

So, I’m going to run through five common mistakes that I see small businesses making with their target market. As well as the target marketing strategies you can use to avoid making them.

But before I start, I also want to let you know about this step-by-step workbook that I’ve created to help you with defining your target market. Click the button below to download.

 

1. Getting stuck in overwhelm

I see many small business owners come up with an excellent idea for a business. They get excited because they know there are lots of potential target groups out there who will want their new service.

However, they get so excited that they start to think of too many, which then makes it hard to choose one.

These thoughts then lead to feelings of being overwhelmed, and they start to doubt themselves.

To avoid these feelings and effectively choose your core audience, focus in on two questions:

  • Which target market is the most profitable?
  • Which target market do you love working with every day?

Then, narrow it down to the target market which is the most profitable that you love to work with every day.

 

Are you questioning whether you have chosen the right target market for your business? Or feel overwhelmed when it comes to narrowing down your market to select a niche?

My 2-hour Target Market Strategy Session is a great way to get the support you need to choose, research and profile your ideal clients.

At the end of the strategy session, you’ll have a detailed target market profile as well as the tools and guidance you’ll need to further research and understand your dream clients as your business grows.

 

2. Define referrer groups, not clients

Many small business owners collaborate or partner with other businesses that have a similar target market.

It is a proven marketing strategy that works and one which many small business owners try to implement early on.

However, there are many moving parts when it comes to target marketing. And it’s easy to get this strategy mixed up when it comes to profiling a target market.

Unfortunately, many small business owners define the types of businesses they want to partner with, instead of specifying the type of clients that the partnering business has.

To get your target marketing right, make sure you are profiling the clients who are going to pay you money for your service. Not the referring business partner who will introduce you to those clients in your target market. They will have a different profile and needs and wants.

 

3. Trying to be everything to everyone

While some small business owners believe they need to chase every customer and every sale, it’s not an effective marketing strategy.

 

While some small business owners believe they need to chase every customer and every sale, it’s not an effective marketing strategy. #marketingstrategy Click To Tweet

 

In the words of Seth Godin (marketing expert) – everyone is not your customer.

The truth is, your service will not appeal to everyone, and you should not fear that excluding some client groups from your target market will limit revenue.

By niching or narrowing down your client group, you will be able to create a stronger brand message.

You will resonate more closely with your ideal clients which will increase conversions and improve your marketing return on investment.

For help with your niche, follow the step-by-step guide in my free Target Market Workbook.

 

4. Overlooking the target market viability

It’s essential to define a target market that is viable or you will end up without a business.

Sometimes a target market is just too small or has been narrowed down too far.

To avoid an unfeasible target market, make sure your core audience has not been too narrowly defined. Estimate the size and revenue potential of your target market and adjust if it will be difficult for you to make a return.

Alternatively, work out how many clients you need to service each week and month to make a profit and determine if the number sounds reasonable and achievable. Adjust if necessary.

 

Are you questioning whether you have chosen the right target market for your business? Or feel overwhelmed when it comes to narrowing down your market to select a niche?

My 2-hour Target Market Strategy Session is a great way to get the support you need to choose, research and profile your ideal clients.

At the end of the strategy session, you’ll have a detailed target market profile as well as the tools and guidance you’ll need to further research and understand your dream clients as your business grows.

 

5. Making too many assumptions

Too often, small business owners assume that they already know what’s important when it comes to their service, or they don’t see the benefit in completing market research.

Getting feedback from potential and existing clients is an ongoing task that all small business owners must undertake. It doesn’t matter if you are the owner of a new or an established business.

Consumer buying trends shift over time, and it’s important to keep in touch with what your target market needs and wants.

 

Consumer buying trends shift over time, and it’s important to keep in touch with what your target market needs and wants. #marketingstrategy Click To Tweet

 

To avoid a misunderstood and poorly researched target market, conduct client surveys, read feedback forms and social media comments and utilise online analytics tools.

These are all useful sources of information when it comes to finding out what your target market wants, what their interests are and where you can find them.

RELATED: How to define a target market for your service business

 

The target marketing bottom line

To create a successful foundation for your marketing plan you need to define a target market that is specific, viable, and well-understood.

The following target marketing strategies will help you to avoid the common mistakes that I see many small business owners make:

  1. Work out which target market is the most profitable and that you love working with
  2. Define the client group that is going to pay you money for your services (not partners)
  3. Niche or narrow your target market or audience
  4. Crunch a few numbers and assess the viability of your target market (adjust if necessary)
  5. Do your market research and don’t assume you know everything about your audience

 

 

Need some help with defining your target market? Download my free target market workbook for your step-by-step guide.

 

Are you questioning whether you have chosen the right target market for your business? Or feel overwhelmed when it comes to narrowing down your market to select a niche?

My 2-hour Target Market Strategy Session is a great way to get the support you need to choose, research and profile your ideal clients.

At the end of the strategy session, you’ll have a detailed target market profile as well as the tools and guidance you’ll need to further research and understand your dream clients as your business grows.

 

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Hayley Robertson
Hayley Robertson
I provide marketing training, one-off marketing strategy sessions, and business coaching programs to service-based small business owners. I teach you how to successfully attract new clients and grow your business without the stress and overwhelm. Before starting my business, I spent more than 15 years working for some of Australia's largest service-based organisations and hold a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) and a Bachelor of Management (Marketing). Learn more about me here.