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How to Target Your Market

Jan 20, 2008
Matching the best products to the right people is the way marketers create an effective marketing campaign. Every individual has his or her own likes and dislikes, needs, wants and financial situation. If someone likes to play golf, they may be likely to do other golf related things. Perhaps scrap-booking or scuba diving really gets their blood going; everybody is different. The differences that divide people are what helps marketing professionals create targeted campaigns for business owners and non-profit organizations.

In the marketing industry, differences among people "consumers" are described in demographics that include peoples' age, marital status, home ownership, car ownership, lifestyles, hobbies and more things than can fit in this paragraph. The reality is that all this information is stored in databases that hold many pieces of information that is used to deliver a marketing offer in the form of a phone call, email or mailing piece.

How can this help me? You ask. In simple terms, let's say you have a proven product or service and you want to market it to consumers, your customer base needs some analyses but you can get started right away.

Let's break this down into some demographics to show you how a marketer would analyze your client base. For ease of discussion, we'll say that you have a gift basket company and you want to promote your baskets for an upcoming holiday season.

After looking over your clients you have discovered that the buyers are predominantly women age 30 - 45 yrs. But you have also had a few men purchase the basket for their clients. This means that you have two distinct demographic groups: that is to say, Consumers and Businesses. This is great because these two groups have different buying habits and can be approached in different ways with your product.

So let's dig a little deeper. The women who buy your baskets with specific products do so for their friends who are getting married, having a baby, and buying a home. These are important milestones and can help you craft a unique offer to them. The business owners are men that are thanking their corporate clients for their business. After looking over the types of baskets purchased you discover that there are actually visible purchasing trends throughout the year.

That is worth doing because if you want to target your market in your city or state you need to know some specific things about your demographics and business growth. Now what can you do? Just as you are a professional gift basket entrepreneur, there are also marketing professionals that can help you take your business to the next level. These are List Brokers who help thousands of businesses put together effective Email, Postal and Telemarketing campaigns. Maybe you think, "Hey. What do they know about my businesses?" Nothing yet, but that's your job. Their job is to fine-tune your ideal customer description into names, business addresses, phone numbers, email addresses that make up a list of thousands of potential clients. Typically, a marketing list starts at 5000 names.

In discussion with the broker, he or she will want to learn enough about your business to know what has worked in the past for you. Their job is to amplify that process by using a refined marketing strategy. They will use your input to go out and source what they feel are the best lists for you. Oftentimes, people think they can save money by trying to determine where the list broker is getting the lists from, and trying to buy direct from that source. This is a flawed strategy because brokers receive wholesale rates and pass those savings onto you. Not only that, but they have access to lists that he general public would never be able to find.

The next time you are considering direct marketing, give a list broker an opportunity to quote on your project. You might be surprised what they can find!
About the Author
James Ingram is VP Marketing for Strategic List Services, Inc. Direct Marketing Lists Specialists Contact a Strategic List Broker for your next Direct Marketing Campaign.
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