As you can imagine, we are constantly challenged with the issue of “targeting” our communications, media, etc. to a demographic or psychographic or behavioral profile. Inevitably, there is push back from both clients and at times internally around who the target is – usually an effort to broaden it. Build a bigger tent. Not leave possible suspects out.
Females with HH income above $50,000 who are 25-54 is NOT a “target” (even if you throw in the word Suburban) – unless you are Kraft, Disney or Dove perhaps. Or at bare minimum, have $15mm to spend nationally or comparable “blitz marketing” money regionally or locally.
As RUSH (the band, not Limbaugh) might say “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice”.
The other work around to this is to avoid demographics and define by inclusive definition. “We are a power tool company that targets Men (and women) who like quality tools” You laugh, but it happens too often.
This seems to be the battle always. The desire to not “lose” many – which by nature is the opposite of real targeting – and the reason so much marketing is watered down. We Want Everyone to Buy It! This almost never works. As RUSH (the band, not Limbaugh) might say “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice”.
Of course, you don’t want to give up one single customer. However, talking to everyone (or even 40% of everyone) is talking to no one. The more specific the target is drawn and the more profiling and insights are used beyond demographics – the more efficient the marketing spend, the more on point the creative, and the greater the success you will ultimately have.
I always admire brands like Suburu in cluttered categories who understand who they are talking to, even when I don’t like their cars (I’m not the target). Sometmes this is a forced choice – like Hardees/ Carls. Jr. decision to go after the Axe crowd, but it still puts a point on message, media spend and overall marketing campaign.
This doesn’t mean that people outside the target are exempt from hearing your message (of course) OR buying your product – it just means that you’ve started from a place of greater precision and clarity to reach those most likely to buy in a more compelling way. Always a good thing.