The importance of this one statement cannot be overstated – know your target market. In fact, it’s better to say that you should know your customer. Who is it that you want to sell to? Is it is a male or a female? Is the person married or single? What age is he or she? How educated is that person? Does the person live in the city or the country? The list goes on and on and on. But the point is really this – know your target customer as well as you know some people in real life; really figure out what makes that person tick. If you can figure that out and speak to that one person (or two or three) directly, you will be way ahead of 90% of your competitors.
I’ll give you an example to elaborate on this point. Don’t just look at the sphere of your product. For instance, let’s say your product is one that hikers use. So typically you would look at the hiking niche (like the Hiking Project site) or the outdoor adventurers niche. And of course you should do that. But most people will stop their market research there. Well, here’s the tip – you don’t stop there. Dig deeper. For example, perhaps you will find that many hikers love and own dogs. Then maybe you should go to sites which dog lovers frequent, such as the Tiptopdogz review site. Look at what products they are looking for, and what makes them like certain products more than others. That will give you a deeper insight into your customer, and you’ll get to know them better. And it’s only when you know your customer really well that you market effectively to him or her.