The segmentation and analysis of your target potential customers is a crucial step in your business plan; this work takes place as part of your market research. The objective is to find which segment of customers is the most interesting about your project and adjust your offer to meet their expectations and criteria better.
The importance of Segmenting your Potential Customers
The segmentation of your target customers is critical. To launch your business, you need to focus your efforts on a specific market, the one that most closely matches your product or service offering. By targeting a market that is too large, you will have difficulty finding a compelling positioning and offering better than the competition. You run the risk of not being able to obtain competitive advantages.
An adequately targeted potential customer segment will allow you to develop an offer of products or services ideally suited to the needs and expectations of your customers. All your efforts will be focused on meeting the needs of this first segment. Then, you can broaden your field of action if you deem it necessary.
Find your Potential Customer Segment
Many project leaders have ideas for starting a business but do not know exactly which clients will most likely be interested in their offer. However, this is a question that must be answered. Indeed, to optimize your chances of success and the content of your offer, you must identify your primary customer segment.
If you have a slight idea of which customers to target, you should interview them to verify their interest in your offer. The interviews and surveys by questionnaires are appropriate tools. If possible, we also recommend that you expand your surveys to other potential customer segments. Assume that you have no certainty that you are targeting the best audience (despite your beliefs). Sometimes it can be worth it.
Once you have found your customer segment, you will analyze it to adapt your offer to improve it (if necessary).
Analysis of your Potential Customer Segment
To analyze your potential customers, you must ask yourself all the questions that will allow you to identify them with precision. The objective is to draw a typical portrait of each type of potential customer:
- In what geographical area and in what types of places are your customers located?
- How old are your customers? their profession? their purchasing power? (private clients, notable clients)
- What is the size of the companies? their sector of activity? (professional clients)
- What are their needs? Their expectations? their purchasing criteria?
- What are they currently buying? What for? What are the benefits?
- What is the average budget? The frequency of purchase?
- Is consumption regular or seasonal?
It is important to identify precisely the criteria used by customers when purchasing a product or service and their expectations. This is a decisive step in improving and finalizing the contours of your product or service offering.
Adapting your offer to the Target Customer Segment
The information gathered during the analysis of your potential customers is invaluable. They will then allow you to adjust your product or service offering. By focusing only on the first targeted customer segment, you will find it easier to adapt to their expectations and criteria.
The more precise and understood your target is, the more your positioning can be advantageous compared to your competitors. Of course, too much targeting is not appropriate either, significantly when it reduces the size of your market so that it is no longer sufficient to thrive there. It is necessary to find a happy medium.
Beyond the logical criteria, which are an essential prerequisite to convince any potential customer, you must think about the possibility of imagining a new standard that could be of significant importance for the customer.
In the presence of serious leads, could your offer adapt to meet these new criteria? This search for differentiation can allow you to build up a new market with little or no competition (therefore more prosperous). For this, working methods exist, such as the strategic outline and the grid of the 4 actions, for example. We advise you to favour the search for positioning different from that of your competitors. Head-on confrontation does not create value.