By Ron Rosenberg
It's always good to start with the basics, and when it comes to marketing, our basics are the "4 Ms of Marketing" - message, market, media, and moment.
And of all the ways you can mix and match these four components, the single most important one is the message-to-market match.
The more you can make an offer look like it's designed specifically for an individual, the more likely it is that the person will respond.
Do You Understand Your Market?
There are some markets that are fairly straightforward to identify and connect with - groups whose goals and characteristics are well known and easily understood. For example:
- Golf or Tennis Players
- Neighborhood Book Clubs
- Local Gourmet Groups
- PTA Leaders
On the other hand, there are market segments that are a little more unique and would require additional research to identify and reach effectively. Some examples of these might include:
- Retirement Communities
- Travel on Cruise Ships
- Motorcycle Riders
And if you dig deeper, you can find markets that are very esoteric - often secretive - and that frequently defy comprehension by the general public, like:
- Tattoos & Gauging
- BBQ Competitions
- Grateful Dead Fans
- Amish and Mennonite Communities
How Do You Connect with These Markets?
As with any niche market you're trying to reach, there are some proven techniques you can utilize to make a meaningful connection.
Find Out What They Need - If you can identify the goals they're trying to accomplish or the results they want to achieve, you can construct your offer in a way that will get their attention and get them to respond. For example, if the market is people who ride "full-dress" touring motorcycles, then safety, reliability, and comfort would be important. If you're trying to reach recreational golfers, then shaving two strokes off of a round of golf would definitely make them sit up and take notice.
Speak Their Language - In any marketing communications - whether print ads, emails, or website copy -make sure you're using the appropriate terminology and jargon. Each of the groups we listed above has its own unique vocabulary. Understanding what "full-dress" means to a biker, or what a "black tank" is for an RV owner, or what "Pinnacle" means to someone who cruises on Royal Caribbean, will help you to write using the language that they'll understand and identify with. And it will make you much more credible at the same time!
Go Where They Are - Finally, you should understand everything you can about each group you're trying to reach. What do they read? Which websites do they visit? Where do they hang out? The more you know about their habits, the easier it will be to get your message in front of them.
So the next time you're preparing a marketing campaign, try to go beyond the normal market segmentation and dig deeper to try and identify specific lifestyle characteristics that will help you connect more powerfully with these unique market segments.