Five Simple Steps to Knowing Your Market


It happens again and again. A business that seemed poised to succeed inexplicably fails. No one can explain exactly what happened; the brand, the marketing, and the product all seemed spot-on. In these cases, the key issue is often that the entrepreneur didn’t know their market.

There are several benefits to knowing your market and building your brand around this knowledge. First, you can use this knowledge to create and carry a product range that will appeal to them. Second, you can brand and market your business in a way that is relevant and enticing. This combination almost guarantees sales, and it isn’t as hard as it sounds. Here are five steps to knowing your market, with all the benefits that come with it.

What type of people need what I am selling? Whatever your product might be, there is sure to be a particular type of person who needs it. You should know key facts about this person, from their gender and relative age to the type of clothing they choose and the area in which they live. Getting a good mental picture of your ideal customer and keeping them in mind when making important decisions regarding your business will ensure that you are always marketing to the right group.

What are they buying to fulfil that need? In some cases, the answer is nothing. Modern people have many unfulfilled needs that are just waiting for the perfect product and the right sales pitch. If your target customer is already buying something to fulfil their need, you should become an expert on that product, from its availability to its price to its benefits and drawbacks.

How will my product fulfil this need better? Once you know this product, you need to understand what makes your product a better option. If there is no clear advantage, you may need to go back to the drawing board. If you are offering an advantage, whether it is a better price, higher quality, more attentive service, or fewer drawbacks, this will be your major marketing point.

What emotions do these people feel when they think of this need? Many people buy out of emotion, so you will be leagues ahead if you know how they are feeling when they think of the need and your solution to it. Will they feel joyful and invigorated, or soothed and relaxed? While most people don’t get excited about a mere product, a product that solves their problems can invoke a highly emotional response.

What kind of promise will attract these customers? Once you have answered the preceding four questions, this one should be easy. You are merely promising the solution to their problem; the only question is how you will deliver this solution.

Being able to answer these questions accurately will put you well on the right path to business success. Armed with this knowledge, you can move forward confidently in developing your brand and the company it represents. Getting to know your customer can be a nerve-wracking, time consuming process, but it is one that will pay off well.