When you’re pulling together plans for launching a new business venture, whether that’s a new product, opening a new branch to tap a new market or starting your own business as a first-time founder, you need to know the market is there for you. If there’s not an audience demanding your products or services to sell to, then you’re not going to survive long past your first funding round (if you manage attract funding at all).
The key to success, from courting investors to becoming self-sustaining based on your revenue is understanding your audience. First you need to confirm they are out there, ready to spend money with a business like yours, then you need to dig deep, learning exactly who they are and what they want, so you can optimise what you’re offering and how you’re offering it to them.
Partnering up with a market research firm is a great first step in getting this demographic data and understanding. Using tools like omnibus surveys, they can return a full demographic breakdown of your market without committing too many resources.
In an omnibus survey, you contribute one or two questions for a small price, but you receive the full demographic breakdown (from the early part of the survey where respondents give data about themselves) as well as the answers to your questions. If you’re able to contribute questions that are significant to your brand, you can use the demographic data to begin to model your market, and feel confident that the demand exists for what you have to sell.
A More Developed Understanding
Once you’ve started to understand your audience in simple terms, you need to develop that understanding. It’s tempting to see them as a big block of people, with just one characteristic – your audience is elderly, or composed of athletes, or homeowners in their 30s. This is doing your market and your business an injustice, though: the real story is far more complex.
Marketing individually to every individual in our audience is obviously unrealistic, but using the principle of audience segmentation, you can break that big block down into smaller audiences with specific characteristics that you can market to in ways optimised for that specific group.
This way of looking at your audience unlocks the revenue potential in your market in way less complex approaches cannot. You can look at your market as made of diverse groups, and prioritise the groups with the biggest budget to spend to make sure you’re targeting them, not simply treating the most numerous group as the most important.