Deep Thoughts about Your Target Audience

Posted by on Jan 23 2017

Scaling, leveraging, redesigning, and transforming your business model means looking at all aspects of it, even those pieces you think are sacrosanct, like your target audience.

I know you have spent vast amounts of time defining your perfect customer — and even more time building relationships with the customers you have.

So when you’re rethinking your business and getting ready to take it to a new level, one place to create instant leverage is to question your target audience and look for new possibilities.

Here are some “what if” questions to ponder, which will open your eyes to new ideas:

  • WHAT IF you could serve those people who also serve your customers? For instance, if you’re a small business consultant, what if you could serve the financial advisors, accountants, virtual assistants, website designers, and human resource companies who serve your same target audience?
  • WHAT IF you could serve a different target audience with the same assets you already have? Pretend for a moment that you didn’t want to offer your individual services anymore, but you didn’t want to throw away all that knowledge and experience either. Could you create a training program to teach people how to become what you are? Then they could serve your original target audience. Imagine you’re a team communication trainer, but you don’t want to offer your workshops to corporations anymore. Could you team other people how to either deliver your workshops, or team them how to run a team communication training company, essentially training the next generation and moving yourself into the “mastery” role.
  • WHAT IF you could narrow your target audience to one from a specific demographic? For instance, let’s say you are a graphic artist and you’ve been working with local companies to design their marketing materials. What if you focused solely on service firms, or solely on manufacturing firms? What if you focused only on businesses which make more than $1 million a year? Or focused only on women-owned businesses? Or focused solely on businesses with a strong social-responsibility stand?
  • WHAT IF you could ponder all the past customers you’ve had and choose the ones that you most enjoyed working with and/or the ones that were most profitable? What do they have in common?

You don’t have to make a major shift to a brand-new target audience (though that is one viable business reinvention strategy). You can re-define who you most enjoy working with and which clients are the most profitable — transforming your business to align more with your goals and values.

P.S. I’d love to hear your thoughts and questions…what are you thinking about your target audience these days?


18 comments for now

18 Responses to “Deep Thoughts about Your Target Audience”

  1. […] took her six months to find clarity on the services she’d offer and her exact target audience. Now she’s positioning herself as a workshop and seminar leader, offering workshops within […]

    20 Jul 2010 at 1:03 pm

  2. Your Self Employed Newsletter is the second one I have read this morning that have provided me with much inspiration, there’s on a personal level and your on a professional level.

    I currently have 3640 un-read emails in my inbox- lifestyle choice not to read any emails unless they are urgent.

    So to read two that caught my eye and get value is a bonus!

    The Deep Thoughts About Your Target Audience triggered off thoughts about an angle I have been thinking about going for, so thanks.

    Be blessed in your purpose

    Iona Woodmore -The Vision Coach

    17 Aug 2010 at 3:47 am

  3. Karyn Greenstreet

    Hi, Iona,

    I’m glad this article provided inspiration out of the 3,000+ emails in your inbox! We all need to shake up our thinking from time to time, lift our heads, and get a fresh perspective.


    17 Aug 2010 at 4:42 am

  4. Hi Karyn,

    These are the questions I’m pondering as I go about the hard job of reinventing my business. I know this, the more focused I can be on both who I want my customer to be and what services I offer to those customers the happier I’ll be and the more success I’ll achieve. I always enjoy your views.

    17 Aug 2010 at 7:47 am

  5. Karyn Greenstreet

    Sounds like you’re on target (no pun intended) with your reinvention, Tom. We must think about the customers we enjoy working with the most and a series of other factors, when making strategic business transformations.

    17 Aug 2010 at 8:03 am

  6. These ideas really get me thinking outside the box. I have definitely given thought to who I most like to work with, yet I haven’t thought about it in this way. I like the what-if questions…energizing!

    19 Aug 2010 at 11:36 am

  7. Karyn Greenstreet

    I’m glad they got you thinking, Marci! 🙂 The thing I love about transforming your business is that you get to think deeply about things you may have been taking for granted, taking a fresh look at all the foundational pieces.

    19 Aug 2010 at 4:41 pm

  8. […] are lots of places where you can transform your business: your marketing, your target audience, the services and products you sell, the way back-office administration happens, your technology, […]

    20 Oct 2011 at 2:51 am

  9. linda rumpf

    Targeting microaudiences — a different one every day, practically — has turned out to be the key to magazine writing…and flexibility with working up new products. One magazine was clearly not ever going to be my audience; they require ultra-scholarly articles on theology — am just not qualified to write that— I noticed they publish poems of spiritual nature, and that I can do, so I found out who the poetry editor is and sent a poem instead. Also, having to come up with new products (hadn’t tested my poetry chops for awhile) makes one get more creative. Its exciting and adds to job satisfaction.

    03 Sep 2012 at 8:14 pm

  10. linda rumpf

    Also, I tried your excercise with the book manuscript I was writing for women in retail to break out and try commissioned sales of large merchandise…to quit wasting their sales skills on low-paying jobs, etc…and I tried reenvisioning the message to include men…it’s given me a lot to think about.

    03 Sep 2012 at 8:24 pm

  11. […] took her six months to find clarity on the services she’d offer and her exact target audience. Now she’s positioning herself as a workshop and seminar leader, offering workshops within […]

    31 Mar 2014 at 10:27 am

  12. Thanks for the great ideas! I’ve been thinking of shifting my niche from doctors to doctors who are within 5 years of retirement, and I’m going to discuss that with my wife/business partner and start to take some action!

    03 Apr 2014 at 10:56 am

  13. Karyn Greenstreet

    Go for it, Jude! Just make sure you have a marketing plan that allows you to reach these “doctors within 5 years of retirement” easily.

    03 Apr 2014 at 3:07 pm

  14. Perfect timing! These questions are exactly what I needed to take action. #4 was something I had pretty much given up on in the din of seasons greetings but you gave it a new twist. Thanks!

    29 Jan 2018 at 9:46 am

  15. Karyn Greenstreet

    Hi, Genella, thanks for the blog comment, I’m glad you found the post on rethinking your audience helpful. You’ve been in business a long time, so business redesign must come up for you often.

    29 Jan 2018 at 11:22 am

  16. LaKiesha Tucker

    I am still very new to small business coaching-consulting. This really gave me some things to ponder as my vision begins to come together. I don’t want to confuse myself, but these questions actually enabled me to think “bigger” about where I am going, what I want to accomplish, and how. Thank you!

    29 Jan 2018 at 12:53 pm

  17. Thank you, Karyn, for this article. Your words – “transforming your business to align more with your goals and values” jumped out at me. I’ve been working with clients for years who aren’t my ideal clients and are very difficult to work with. It’s easy to take clients when you need the money and the bills are due. I’m going to start working on my client list to “weed out” some in order to work with clients whose goals and values are more like mine.

    02 Feb 2018 at 1:41 pm

  18. Karyn Greenstreet

    Congratulations, Linda! It feels so good to work only with the clients you want to work with, not the ones you have to work with.

    02 Feb 2018 at 2:27 pm

Category: Rethinking Your Business
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