Our series on starting a small business continues with a discussion about identifying your brand’s target audience.

As the old adage goes, you can’t please all the people all the time. So, it’s best to focus your resources on pleasing the right people as often as possible. The best way to do this is to identify your business’s audience right off the bat.

Now that you’ve named your company, found some small business financing, and branded yourself with a great tagline, it’s time to talk about who you think is going to buy your products.

First, let’s think about who these people are. What kind of lifestyle do they live? Once you figure that out, it will be easy to think about what is important and valuable to them…and hopefully it’s something that your product can provide better than anyone else.

Next, ask yourself where you can find them. Attitudes can vary greatly across specific demographics, depending on the value that your product addresses. Does it appeal to women of all ages? Or to teenagers of any gender? Age, gender, geographic location, marital status, income, and level of education are all important factors to consider.

Finally, figure out what they need. Once you know who your audience is in general, think about their day-to-day life and what they need. What could make their lives easier, or more enjoyable.

Once you’ve done these three things, sit down and write a customer profile, or several profiles if your product appeals to a number of groups. It might seem like an unnecessary step, but having a hypothetical person to market to can give you some powerful insights that a nebulous group of ideas might not.

Good luck!

The next post in our small business series will be all about creating a memorable, effective logo that will stand the test of time.

More posts in this Setting Up Your Business series:
Naming Your Business [INFOGRAPHIC]
9 Strategies for Starting an Online Business on a Budget
Branding Your Small Business with a Tagline
Designing a Small Business Logo 101

One Response

  1. Reply
    Adegboyega O. Ogunmola
    Dec 09, 2012 - 07:21 AM

    The thought of forming an hypothesis, has given me some assurance, and consideration, over my wondering, about a target audience, for my Writer business.
    I’ve tackled many ideas previously, but to no avail.
    Thanks, for the good post.

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