Marketing is the act of letting people know about your product or service. It is education. Sales is the act of solving the prospect’s problem, alleviating their pain, or fulfilling their desire and exchanging money with them for your product or service. Not all people are going to need your product. Spending money marketing to “anyone who can fog a mirror” is crazy and expensive. In order to connect the right fitting people to the solution you have, you need to know exactly who those people are.
Who is in Your Tribe?
You may have heard of the term target marketing. I choose to use the word tribe to reflect the community of customers we intend to create rather than the word target. Using target implies we’re taking aim and shooting at a group of people. In business, doesn’t it sound a whole lot better to create a “tribe” of supportive customers than a group of potential customers you’re shooting at?
Three essential areas to research relating to your tribe are the Demographics, Geographics and Psychographics of your ideal customer. The better you know these three, the more you’ll be able to connect with and educate them about your product.
Demography is the science of vital and social statistics of populations which specifically means studying the births, deaths, marriages, education level, income level, et cetera, of the population.
Demographics, then, are the data representing the gender, age, and education levels of your tribe market.
- How old is your ideal customer?
- How much education have they had?
- How much income to they earn?
- Are they parents or grandparents?
- Do they rent or own?
As you can see from the word itself, Geographics are data representing the geographic picture of your tribe market. In other words,
- Where do they live?
- In what general neighborhood, region, area are they located?
- What zip codes are associated with your ideal client?
- Where do they work?
Break this word down: psycho and graphics. The root psych is exactly the same as in words psychology and psychoanalysis: all having to do with the psyche or the mind. Psychographics are the data that represents the “why” behind purchasing. Usually, when you can figure out the “why” behind the purchase of a few products, you can guess about how they may buy other products, including yours. Yes, there are companies that spend billions of dollars researching spending habits. To get you thinking about the psychology of buying and how it applies to your marketing, think about these scenarios:
A woman buys groceries at the local organic co-op food market, drives a small cross over vehicle that has bumper stickers on it from different campgrounds and carries around a glass water bottle. What type of newspaper do you think she reads? What kind of magazines do you think she subscribes to? What kind of activities/causes does she support that you could sponsor? Do you think she watches TV? If you wanted to encourage this woman to buy your product, where would you advertise? What type of words would you use to entice her to buy?
A young man in college just ran down to the store to get some beer for a party. He bought a beer on sale, he drives a pick-up truck and was wearing a t-shirt and jeans he got from the small second-hand consignment store downtown. If you wanted to encourage this man to come to your store/buy your product, where do you think you’d have to be located? What would the price range need to be of your products for him to buy from you?
- What kind of people are your customers?
- What do they read?
- Where do they spend their spare time?
- Do the listen to radio? Watch TV? What stations?
- What problems do they face?
- What do they want to maintain their quality of life? What is their quality of life?
Spend time thinking about and creating a model of your ideal customer. Draw, cut out pictures, and write down as much information about them as you can. Name them! Call them Susan, or John, or Bubba. Get personal and know exactly who they are. By clearly identifying your tribe you’ll be able to effectively educate them about your product and solve their problems and make easy sales.