Upside-Down Thinking by Patric Fransko
by Patric Fransko
August 31st, 2016

Are You Hitting the Target?

Recently, I wrote an article about targeting for promoted content on Facebook. In this article, I wanted to discuss this topic in a much more generalized way—how it applies across all marketing areas.

In marketing, there are few things as important as hitting your target market. It doesn’t matter if you are Targetdoing print advertising or using primarily social media—proper targeting should be at the very top of your marketing priorities.

I want to give you three over-arching targeting categories that every marketing campaign should take into account. You can get much more granular with targeting than these three broad categories, but this is a solid foundation in which to start. So, as you read through these, be thinking of how you can apply these strategies to any marketing that you are currently doing.


  1. Geographic Targeting – By geographic targeting I am not merely talking about blanketing your town and a specified radius around it. I suggest to my clients that you should do all location-based targeting centered on zip codes. A zip code is much more precise than a radius from a specified point. I would be willing to bet that in a 15-mile radius from your location that there are very good areas and not so great areas. The problem with radius-based location targeting is that you are spending marketing dollars to reach everything inside that circle. If there are known areas inside that circle that do not include good potential prospects, why are you spending the money to place your marketing in front of them?
  2. Gender Based Targeting – Depending on what product you are marketing, chances are that the traditional customer might be more heavily weighted toward one gender or another. Take automotive parts, for example. Sure, there may be women that would respond to marketing for automotive parts, but it’s probably a safe-bet to assume your potential prospects are more heavily weighted on the male side. The issue with much of the marketing we see is that the dollars being spent are placing the marketing equally in front of men and women. Much like what was mentioned in the geographic marketing point, why would you spend money to place marketing in front of consumers that you know are not good prospects? You may miss some potential customers by pursuing gender-based targeting, but I suspect you will save much more money from being wasted trying to market to someone not interested in your product or service.
  3. Demographic Based Targeting – If you study your customers (and you should), you have likely discovered that your average customer has multiple common traits. When you target your marketing, you should focus on these common traits and try to place your product or service in front of an audience that shares these common traits. For example, if you sell a product or service that is used in a home, is a non-essential purchase and becomes a permanent part of the home, you would target accordingly. What does that look like? In this case, you would likely target homeowners that are above a certain income level. If the product becomes a permanent part of the house, you won’t be selling it to someone that is renting. Likewise, if it is a non-essential purchase, you probably won’t make a sale to someone fighting to stay within their budget.This is merely meant to get you to begin thinking at a deeper level about target marketing. These three methods are just scratching the surface of all the ways you can target your marketing efforts. Fortunately, there are tools available in 2016 that enable you to finely tune your marketing efforts and place your product or service specifically in front of the eyes that are the most likely to respond. Targeting properly will not only increase the effectiveness of your marketing, but will save you a great deal of money by not trying to sell to someone that has no interest in buying.

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