Posted On: Jan 12, 2016
Posted By: John Duff
Prolonged B2B Sales Cycle – New Dare Test for Marketers

Highly targeted marketing is, more often than not, a double-edged sword. The power to use data correlation and analytics to isolate the perfect markets is very appealing. However, data can only deliver so much. The rest is human insight followed by assumption and that is where we claim our greatest victories and perversely, make our biggest mistakes.

Most marketers will gladly acknowledge the gains that come with focusing your resources on a specific, high-response audience. Very few, however, will divulge exactly what you need to do in order to find those magical segments.

Here are a few tips to help prospective marketers find and captivate prospective audiences.

Educate Yourself

Learn as much as you can about your prospective audiences. Remember, there’s more than one audience for your product and more often than not, the assumptions you make about them are flawed. For example, a health snack might find a market with,

  • Serial dieters
  • Vegans
  • Health food fanatics
  • Growing families

Now these audiences will most likely overlap. That’s one of the reasons why you need to study them extensively in order to devise a marketing strategy that creates mass product appeal across these segments.

Forget Everything You Know About Clicks

At one point, every marketer would run around doing cartwheels, trying to garner as many clicks as possible. Sadly, clicks are steadily declining in importance when it comes to ascertaining the desired response. So, don’t rely on CTRs to give you an accurate picture. Instead, look at less apparent metrics like the time a user spent engaging with your material. The length of interaction with an email is usually a clear indicator of interest either in your creative or in the product itself.

Find Out What Everybody Else Is Doing?

Look at the competition (if it exists) and check out what their target markets are and follow suit. Also take a look at past campaigns and ascertain which audiences responded best. This will help you get a basic idea of who you should be targeting to get above-par results.

Don’t Split Hairs

This is something I’ve seen happen time and time again. Over-zealous marketers trying to capture the perfect niche by segmenting their target audience into negligibly sized bits. Often this will involve 10-20 targeting parameters that make it nearly impossible to find an audience worth marketing to.

For example, have you ever tried to find a mailing list that would help you reach out to blonde motorcyclists, above the age of 52, earning over 150,000 dollars a year who are in actively searching for diamond jewelry.

You might find 15 of them if you’re lucky. And those 15 might not even be in the market for jewelry at the same time.

Take my advice, stick to broader segments. This can help you uncover lucrative audiences that you might not have noticed otherwise.

Data Is Good Gather It!

Reconsider your current customer base and ask every prospective customer to fill in a web form. This will give you specific information about them – information that can then be used to target prospects that fall into the same categories as your best customers.

Widen Your Horizons After All, It’s Email!

Try marketing to high-response audiences in different countries and states. Remember to tailor your communications to suit the cultural differences that you’re bound to encounter while hard sell may work in the US, many European cultures will find it bordering on the offensive.

When you find a target audience, remember that just because they fall into the right segments, doesn’t mean they’ll jump at the opportunity to buy your product. Generate awareness and use your creatives to spread desire for your product among a particular demographic combination. Follow the tips outlined above and you’ll be well on your way to developing responsive targeting parameters that fill up your sales pipeline.