Learning the Lingo: Targeting

Posted by Nick Pizzolato on Fri, Apr 03, 2015 @ 02:59 PM

Learning the Lingo: Targeting | Wicked Local Media SolutionsLearning the Lingo is a series of posts that will investigate marketing terms, ideas and strategies. Our topic today: Targeting.

It doesn’t matter if you are a new business or an established one, the common goal of all businesses is to draw in new customers. But, that is easier said than done. If every business could pull in enough clients by just opening their doors, there wouldn’t be a need to advertise or leverage deals against your competition.

You may be thinking of ways to attract everyone. But actually, you don’t need all the customers - you just need to attract the ones who will be more likely to buy from you.

Think of it this way, do you want 100 people to visit your business and only make a sale to one person? Or, would you rather find ten consumers and convert five of them into paying customers? If I knew that delivering a message to just ten people would result in more products sold, I would always select that option.

And that’s Targeting.

It’s about finding the right group of consumers who will be more likely to shop at your business. Connecting with the folks who are more apt to read, respond and act on your advertising. But how do you find that group? It may seem daunting, but it’s actually as simple as looking at your receipts.

You know when an item is popular. You know the type of customer that visits your store. Just by taking an inventory of your business and your clientele, your target consumer will become readily apparent. The answers to all of those questions can be answered just by working one shift at your store. Who knows your customers better than you?

Start by physically writing down everything about that type of customer you wish to attract. When you do this, don’t just look to see what products you reorder the most, also think about your conversations with return customers. Are they male or female? Single or a part of a family? How old are they?

With just those three questions, you have already begun to start to outline your prime customer. Now, start to build their story. How much do you think they make a year? Did that person go to college? What products did they buy when they visited the store? What do they do for a living? Do they have a cat or a dog? Do they have disposable income? Where do they live?

The answers to these questions will help you add characteristics to your outline. Your customer will start to become clear. Before you know it, your blurry concept will be a detailed picture of whom you should be communicating with.

Now, armed with this information, you can build an advertising strategy that will work. You can decide which websites to advertise with. Have a clear idea about where to publish print ads. Your direct email marketing campaign will be able to reach precisely who you want it to reach.

Targeting isn’t about excluding some people, it’s about making sure the people who are the most likely to become customers see your message. You’re finding the consumers who are going to make your business a resource and give it the best opportunity to succeed. Find the people who will be the foundation for your business. You don’t need everyone, just find the right ones.

Nick Pizzolato is the Marketing Content Manager at Wicked Local Media Solutions. For questions, topics for future blogs, or to share your favorite moment from the film “Back to the Future,” email him at

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Tags: Small Business, Learning the Lingo, Marketing, Email Marketing