Many companies have launched products or services focused on a particular sector of society to only discover that their customers really had a very different profile. Knowing who needs the fruit of your labor is one of the starting points of any business project and a critical component of market entry strategy.
When an entrepreneur has that ‘light-bulb moment’ with one of those great ideas to set up a business, the next step after describing the product or service is to determine who would be interested in acquiring it. In fact, it does not require any specific business training, it is a natural question that follows the very idea of what is to be commercialized. In specific terms, the answer to this question is called 'target' or target audience: the people who would be willing to consume what you offer or those most likely to do so.
Being clear about your target audience should be a priority when starting any type of business initiative, as it is one of the bases of all the actions and strategies that you put in place further down the line.
How to find your target audience
The most common thing during the first weeks of the start of any business project, long before the product or service is on the market, is to focus much of the effort on improving what is going to be offered and to analyzing and finding who is going to buy.
Therefore, to find your target audience you must identify the common characteristics that define the type of customer that would be willing to consume your product. This is called market segmentation, and can be done based on many factors, such as: gender, age, economic level, educational level, place of residence, work place, marital status, hobbies and interests...there are really no limits and the more parameters you include, the better and more refined the result.
For example, you have a business idea that will consist of opening a small store selling vintage products from the 80s. After analyzing the market and seeing that there is a growing demand for these type of objects, you get to work to realize your business plan. But before you even decide where you are going to locate your premises, you need to know what the profile of the customers likely to come to your store is, so you can do everything necessary to get their attention.
In this case you are going to say that your business would be focused on both men and women and that the key age will be from 25 to 35 or 40 years. These are the people who have lived the 80s with greater intensity and, therefore, are more likely to keep a good memory of that time and want to recall all those experiences with the acquisition of 'retro' objects.
In addition, you understand that you are targeting an audience with a medium to medium-high purchasing level, since you are going to offer objects that are not of daily necessity, but are rather luxury articles bought in a capricious manner. Of course, as you know the age which you are going to target, you already have an approximate idea of the neighborhood in which you will open up shop, one that is reasonably upscale with a high density of working people. You would like to avoid neighborhoods concentrated with college-going students and the elderly.
Also as your store is going to focus on certain products that were especially popular in 1980s, you can also segment your audience based on those tastes: music, video games, clothing, VHS tapes, collector's items etc.
Very briefly though, but the basic architecture of your target audience should be done. Remember, from this market segmentation you should get clear answers such as: the average price of your products, the characteristics and quality of them, differential aspects of your premises, brand image, customer service, among many others.
In conclusion, if at the beginning of a business you know your target audience perfectly, you have taken a big step towards the success of your company!