Every business needs to understand its target customer. The best businesses invest time and energy into developing a deep, granular understanding of that target.
They move beyond “middle aged women” to “married women in their 50’s with no children living at home who live along the East Coast and have a strong interest in gardening, health, and leisure travel.” Etc. They get as detailed as possible.
Define the Groups Within Your Target Audience
With an understanding of the target customer in hand, it is time to start thinking about the many stages that these people can be at in their relationship with you:
- Newly aware
- New customer
- Seasonal customer
- Active/engaged customer
- Best customer
- Inactive customer
There may be more or fewer categories that are relevant to the relationship you want to build with your target audience. The important thing is to define the various relationship stages that can exist. Then, you can develop targeted communication to engage with people at each stage.
Target Communication Based on the Current Relationship
For each stage, you will want to consider:
- Are there any characteristics common to people at this stage?
- What does this person want to know?
- What motivates this person to move to a more active relationship with me?
- What information or resources will help this person move to the next stage of a relationship with me?
- Where does this person get information about me? (Website, social media, email, events, print material, networking, etc.)
After all this research, you are now well positioned to develop messaging for your target audience at every stage. You will know what key points to target, and where and how to share the information.