Identifying Primary and Secondary Target Markets

Monday, April 05, 2010
When determining a primary target market, know that this market is the total number of potential buyers for your product or service is key. Among that broad group, the primary target market includes those most likely to buy your product or service. The secondary target market has the next greatest potential to buy now or in the near future or to influence someone else to buy from you. 

Market Segmentation 
Markets are segmented by demographics, geography, buying behaviors and psychographic (lifestyle, interests, personality) traits. Market segmentation allows you to manage your marketing efforts and to become effective. 

Market Size 
This is the size of the market you are going after to determine if it is large enough to make your business profitable. If the market potential is too small, you may not have a viable product or service to sell. 

Primary Buyers 
Most of your revenue from sale of products or services will come from the primary target market. This market shares common characteristics and behaviors. This market accounts for the highest volume of sales and are most likely to buy now! When identifying your primary target market, be precise in your definition of a “primary buyer” so you can focus your marketing efforts where you will receive the greatest return. 

Secondary Buyers 
The secondary target market includes future primary buyers, which are those buying at a higher rate within a small market segment and are those who influence primary buyers. Their characteristics and buying behaviors usually differ from those of the primary target market. 

Now that you have identified your Primary and Secondary buyers, let’s focus on setting up a visual chart. 

Set up a product-market chart for your business that takes into account your customer and the products or services you sell. Choose a section of the chart and list the products or services your company sells and the various types of customers served. Describe the products or services in terms that differentiate them in the eyes of the customers and fill in the information. 

On another section of the chart, identify your market segments. Fill in the information for each segment in the chart with the demographic information received. Select the most important segment and designate it as the primary target market. If there are other important segments, describe them as secondary target markets. While profiling market segments, develop a checklist to help summarize what is prudent to learn about a possible market. After you have created two or more of these profiles, compare them to determine which ones present the best overall opportunities for business growth (see example below).

Exploring foreign markets can take longer and cost more than expected. Be prepared for additional expenses for market research, product launches, and personal visits if you are a company that is focused on international growth. 

Review this information and update it periodically to keep the information current.

DJ Heckes, CEO & Author 
Full BRAIN Marketing 

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