As a digital marketer, you're likely always looking to up your game. Perhaps it isn't proving easy to reach some audience segments, causing your overall ROI to suffer. Targeted marketing could be your answer for getting back on track. You may have heard of this concept and wondered, "is targeted marketing effective?"
Targeted marketing has become a key strategy in any digital marketer's playbook. Technology has advanced to make it easier, and consumers have come to expect it — so much so that buyers often look elsewhere when brands don't use a targeted marketing approach. But there's good news: Targeted marketing is a simple concept, and tools are readily available to drive stellar targeted marketing campaigns and keep your business sharp.
Targeted Marketing Strategies for Your Business
Evaluating and examining different market segments serves the purpose of identifying the best available position for our business. This evaluation ultimately results in selecting one or more market segments and entering them. A targeted marketing strategy is really about determining the overall direction of the business and the efforts that are going to be made in the future. There are several strategies for target marketing; In the following part, we will look at these strategies and how to use them.
What is targeted marketing?
Targeted marketing, by definition, is the strategy of tailoring and personalizing online advertising according to data acquired from some intended audience. In other words, instead of sending out ads to an incredibly large audience, a subset is selected based on their traits, interests, and preferences.
Of course, targeted marketing has numerous associated benefits. After all, you're sending advertisements to people who are highly likely to be interested in them. It's hard to fail such a strategy.
Targeted marketing is the preferred strategy by consumers. When allowed to pick between random or targeted advertisements, over 40% prefer the latter, and 27.6% prefer either.
Additionally, behavioral-data-based ads were shown to be the most effective – their clickthrough rate was up to 5.3x higher compared to other approaches.
Companies that offer specialized products or services benefit the most from targeted marketing strategies. Focusing marketing efforts on specific groups more likely to respond increases the chances that the marketing efforts will be relevant to those groups. When marketing is relevant, people are more likely to spend money on that service or product.
In addition, targeted marketing typically provides specific information and incentives to people, giving them a reason to choose that company over competitors in the same industry.
For example, Starbucks currently holds the largest market share of the coffee industry in the United States. The company focuses its advertising on women and men between the ages of 25 and 40 who live in urban areas, have moderately high income and professional careers and demonstrate an interest in fair trade and social welfare. Starbucks bets that these key groups are more likely to spend money on specialty coffee drinks and products.
In addition, Starbucks targets young people between 18 and 24 by providing a comfortable, appealing place where they can sit and chat, study, or work. Starbucks also stays active on social networking websites, further appealing to the 18-to-40 demographic. This encourages younger adults to "follow" Starbucks on social media sites, increasing brand awareness and encouraging people to spend their time (and money) at Starbucks locations.
Types of audience segmentation
You can employ many different types of audience segmentation to aid your digital marketing campaign. Each comes with a unique set of benefits for different businesses.
Affinity audiences reach people with a well-rounded view of their lives and selves. Lifestyles, passions, habits, and more are considered when looking for affinity audience segments.
Affinity audiences are audiences of people who show a definite interest or passion for a specific topic. This allows advertisers to reach people who are already passionate about their offerings, business, or fields related to their products or services.
Custom audiences allow a company to target who they want through keywords, URLs, and apps. For example, instead of reaching an affinity audience for people who love crafting, a company that sells yarn may want to reach consumers who run small knitting or crocheting businesses instead. Using custom audiences, this yarn company can define its audience with keywords such as "handmade clothing business owner" or "crochet or knitting enthusiast."
In-market segments of an audience are people who are already in the market for your products or services. This means they're already researching products and actively considering buying a similar service or product your company offers.
This conversion-driven approach allows advertisers to focus on increasing conversions by targeting those with a high likelihood of purchase. Once you decide who the target audience is for your business, you can target them specifically.
Similar audience segmentation automatically finds new customers similar to a company's existing customers. Google Ads uses machine learning to update similar audience lists in real-time, allowing you to compare new uses to current remarketing lists.
This process presents an opportunity to create impressions on people who share similar characteristics to your existing customers and those on your remarketing and customer match lists.
Customer match audiences allow a business to use their online and offline data to reach and re-engage with existing or previous customers. This requires businesses to use the information provided by customers to ensure they see targeted ads.
Life events audience segmentation surrounds those currently or about to experience a significant life event or change. This could mean individuals who are about to graduate from high school or college, engaged people, people buying a new home, or people expecting a child.
Major life events are infrequent, so there is a smaller audience reach, but it is highly targeted. For example, if a person gets engaged, they will be actively looking to purchase things related to weddings. This makes it a perfect time to show them advertisements for flower shops, dresses, nice suits, venues, and more. Their demand for wedding-related items and services will last anywhere from a few months to a few years, depending on when they schedule their wedding.
Detailed demographic segmented audiences allow companies to reach large portions of a population that share a common, specific trait. An example of a detailed demographic is new parents. New parents are a highly specific audience looking for similar products and services, such as baby clothes, solutions for diapers, reliable childcare services, and more.
Remarketing is an extremely effective method of interesting people who previously engaged with a company's products or services. This method works well with other methods, including paid search and paid social media advertising.
Remarketing targets past website visitors, mobile app users, people who clicked on an advertisement on any platform, and even those who watched a video. Businesses can also
remarket to those who previously provided them with contact information.
Demographics include all your basic identifying information, such as age, gender, education level, marital status, race, religion, income level, and more. This data is easy to obtain and categorize because there are only a handful of options for each category.
This goes one level deeper than demographics. Psychographic data explores the values, beliefs, interests, lifestyles, personalities, and other less tangible things customers trust and hold dear.
Behavior segmentation is how your target customers act and behave falls under this option. This includes their purchasing habits, spending patterns, user-level, and all brand interactions.
Where are your customers located? You can break down geographic locations into neighborhoods, area codes, cities, regions, countries, etc. Knowing where your customers are located helps you deliver content and messages relevant to their areas.
After these main marketing segmentation options, there is also business and device segmentation.
This only applies to companies that sell directly to businesses. Here, you might consider the size, industry, customer base, revenue, and other business traits you want to target.
With the rise of mobile smartphone users, it is now helpful to look at audiences based on their devices. Devices can include desktops, mobile phones, tablets, smart TVs, watches, etc.
Applying these various segmentation types lets you get more specific about your targets. The more specific you are, the easier it is to create personalized content that is highly relevant and valuable to audiences.
Benefits of Targeted Marketing
Targeting in marketing is so crucial because your customers are so crucial. Without them, there is no business! Your targeting will impact your entire marketing strategy. Advertising, customer experience, business operations, and branding — are all affected by your target marketing. With proper targeting, you can achieve the following:
With targeting, marketing becomes more affordable, efficient, and effective at generating customer leads. Saving money on marketing and a better return on investment are the most obvious benefits of targeted marketing — especially for small businesses with frugal marketing budgets. Targeted marketing is far more cost-effective than mass marketing as firms are not wasting time and money marketing to people who will never be a customer. Instead, the target audience is specific consumers who are most likely to become customers.
When you talk directly to the target audience, you can attract potential customers to your business. Targeted marketing campaigns can reach the specific group you wish to engage with your business. When you reach out to the right groups, you're more likely to get quality leads that can turn into potential customers. Be sure to retain your current customers as you look for new prospects to increase your sales.
- focused segmentation
- better audience reach
- create deeper connections
- boost customer loyalty
- improve customer relationships
When you avoid speaking to everyone in the market and concentrate on a specific audience, you begin to stand out from competitors. Be sure to market your brand so every customer can easily identify you. Customers who recognize your brand are more likely to buy from you, especially if they've had a positive experience. Use your top position in the market to ensure your brand remains unique and well-known.
- help brand stand out
- boost brand awareness
Understanding Customer's Needs
The target marketing process provides a basis for understanding customers' needs by grouping customers with similar characteristics together and selecting the target market. Segmentation allows marketers to more precisely define customer needs and expectations within their advertising.
Marketers improve their understanding of how, why, and what influences customer buying. Being in touch with customers increases their responsiveness to changing needs and allows for better marketing programs.
The ability to provide direct, targeted campaigns to customers that cater to their specific needs and preferences profoundly affects loyalty. Since you rely on their feedback and suggestions to refine your targeting, customers sense that their thoughts and concerns are heard and utilized. This makes every interaction with your business mean something.
It's about making the audience feel like more than just another sales stat! When you change something about your marketing approach based on customer interactions, the customer feels that they are part of your brand's journey. Thus, they'll continue to support your business and remain loyal for years.
Develop Better Products And Services
The customer-brand interactions that your business creates also help in product development.
They give a clear insight into what customers want and don't want, along with helpful suggestions on making your offerings even better.
You'll start to edge out the competition by developing better products and services. You'll offer features and add-ons that customers are looking for but can't find elsewhere. It's about putting yourself in their shoes and delivering the best products and services based on what they truly want, not just what you think they want.
Difference Between Targeted Marketing from other forms of Marketing
The simple explanation to define the difference between targeted and mass marketing is that mass marketing tries to reach as many people as possible. In contrast, targeted marketing attempts to reach a specifically defined and profiled audience. Both of these methods can be an effective marketing route and can drive a business's leads and sales.
Mass marketing can be more expensive; the message must be stated in the most basic form to have the broadest appeal possible, and the result can become diluted. In the digital age, people expect to be spoken to personally, and a blanket mass marketing campaign could prove a costly exercise if not executed properly.
One example of mass marketing could be a direct mail door drop to a local area for a new restaurant opening in the area. They would blanket an entire catchment area, and some of those residents would be potential clients for them, simply down to the postcode. Aside from the address, it's not targeted, but it could generate some results for the restaurant.
Targeted marketing allows you greater flexibility and the ability to speak directly to your target market. This would usually be approached by learning more about your target market, their needs, wants, and fears and then tailoring your marketing to speak to them directly.
Targeted marketing can potentially help you save time and money on your marketing and lead generation expenses. Instead of the expense of a high volume, a scattered effect that mass marketing can often generate, targeted marketing allows you to clearly define your unique value to your target audience in a more personal and effective way. Your strategy and planning must be comprehensive; great design, a clear message & great copy is essential. This means that more time may be required to create and develop very specific targeted campaigns to produce the results you require. If time is important in encouraging sales, targeted marketing planning may be prohibitive to getting your message out to your audience quickly enough.
Either method can be effective, considering the comments above, but defining the target market, getting the message right, and being consistent will usually produce more consistent results.
Particularly in the digital space, we'd always recommend profiling your audience as much as possible to ensure that the digital marketing strategy, message, and website design meet your business and your client's needs. Mass marketing is always an option, but it's a lot riskier to get the result right the first time.
Ways to be successful with targeted marketing
Knowing your customers' wants and needs builds long-lasting connections and trust. Targeted marketing helps that process by segmenting your audience and directing specific pieces of marketing toward smaller groups of people. Learn how your business can build effective targeted marketing strategies that drive more leads to become customers.
If you want your message to resonate with people, you first need to understand who those people are clearly. Remember that figuring out your target audience is a two-way street: you need to think about your product or service and define the characteristics of the person you imagine using it, but you also need to look at existing information to figure out who is using it. Dive into your Google Analytics to find your customers' age, gender, and location; look at your CRM to find things like job titles, likes, and dislikes; gather data from your email marketing service; talk to marketers, salespeople, and customer service for anecdotal information. Use whatever information you have to understand exactly who your customers are, how they use your products, and their pain points.
Your unique selling proposition (USP) is essential to figuring out brand messaging. It's important to note that your USP is more than just a list of your product's features — any of your competitors would likely have a similar list. You need to look at the market and figure out the exact hole you fill. Ideally, a hole in your target audience needs to be filled. Once you know your audience and what they value, you should have clear guidelines for establishing your own brand's value proposition.
Whom are you designing your content for? You probably already have a buyer persona created for the rest of your marketing tactics. Use it to understand what type of content they are looking for.
Besides the general information about the persona (demographics, pain points), you can also consider buying patterns and history of interaction with your brand. This can help you understand what type of content each segment of your target audience needs at a given time.
For example, you would create different types of content for:
- Top, middle, and bottom of the sales funnel prospects
- Existing clients
- Clients that prefer homeopathic and naturopathic therapies
- Prospects looking for body practices
Your content should address pain points and provide informational or actionable solutions to each part of your target audience. Then you can use different channels to deliver the content to specific segments.
Even the highest quality content may not help achieve your business goals if you use the wrong format or publish it in the wrong place. Depending on the parameters of the target audience and your marketing and business goals, you can choose the format. For example,
- Lead generation — e-books, podcasts, contests
- Brand awareness — how-to blogs and videos, infographics, SlideShare presentations
- Education — e-books, case studies, white papers
To optimize your marketing budget, don't try to publish your content on all possible social media channels. After putting it up on your website, choose one or two channels on which the target audience spends the majority of its time on.
Target the most appropriate keywords on every web page. To begin, you must target the right keywords with your website copy. This will ensure that your website ranks for the right queries on search engines, so you reach the most suitable people.
Head to a keyword research tool like Google Keyword Planner with a list of words and phrases relevant to your business. Plug these in, and Google will provide you with a list of keywords that people are searching for based on their competitiveness, their hard to rank, and their average monthly search volumes. These are the words relevant to your business that people are searching for! Weaving them into your content and web page copy is an excellent way to ensure that you draw in people searching for things relevant to your business.
You can reach your target audience more effectively by using targeted advertising. Whether it is Google or social media ads, they all provide advanced targeting options to help you reach your target audience. You can target the ads based on your audience's demographics, location, and interests.
This will ensure that your ads are only displayed to those likely to show interest in your brand. This means you don't need to spend a fortune on ads to reach your target audience, who are more likely to convert than anyone else.
Facebook, for instance, gives you access to multiple targeting tools to help you create and run ads. They even offer analytics so that you can further optimize your advertising campaigns. Other social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter also have their advertising tools.
You can also create ads through Google Ads and showcase them to your target audience across the internet. Or you can remarket your products and services to people who have shown interest in them previously. This, too, can be achieved through targeted advertising.
Many businesses use a referral system to expand their reach and generate leads. A referral system can help you harness the power of your own customer base to expand your reach. You can give a referral code to your customers and incentivize them to share it with others. You can reach your target audience quickly and with lower investment.
You can, of course, play around with your incentives. You could offer a discount to your new user and the referrer or give them a special offer. This incentivizes not only the new customer but also the referrer to purchase from you again.
The people who join through such a system may genuinely be interested in your brand and products. This method has helped businesses to grow and establish their network on a larger scale.
The more you know about your target audience, including the people visiting your website, the easier it is for your sales and marketing teams to win their business and generate revenue for your company. With a better understanding of your customers, you can craft messages that speak to them directly. This helps you reduce noise and position your company as a trusted resource.
After all, there's nothing worse than working on an email campaign, hitting send, and not seeing any returns. It's also hard to see low levels of engagement after you've crafted a dynamic — and pricey — paid social media promotion. Taking the time to get to know your audience makes a difference. With a clear, consistent view of key prospects and your best clients, you can create campaigns that help you get in the door faster and generate real growth.
Universal Creative Solutions offers marketing strategy consulting and marketing operations consulting to help you devise targeted marketing campaigns for your business. We help you get clear on your target market and the unique value that you offer. From there, we can maximize your marketing spend so that you're attracting the right audience. Schedule a free consultation call to learn how we can improve your marketing ROI.