Offbeat Target Markets

Not every target market is immediately obvious.  Sometimes, you have to take the leap and go for a strong, cohesive market that might just become your most loyal customers. Recently I went to see a movie and while watching the commercials beforehand I found myself very taken with an insurance company’s embracing of the comic fandom.  The entire principle of the commercial was geared towards fans and attendees of Comic-Con (an annual comic book and art convention).  Specifically, the commercial was geared at those who hadn’t made it last year, and how this year, they should absolutely, totally go. In fact, if you enter their contest and win, the insurance company will send you and a guest to Comic-Con 2012.

Let me be clear - I am in no way endorsing the use of any particular insurance carrier.  What I am doing is saying that I for one am impressed by this bold move in directly targeting such a specific, unified and relatively unique market.  It isn’t that comic book fans need insurance more than other drivers of cars or inhabitants of houses.  Comic book readers don’t encounter the sort of massive destruction of property depicted in their reading material of choice.  But they are a people who readily identify themselves as part of a group and as such, when you speak directly to them, they might just listen.

How do you find such a market for yourself?

1.  Resonance.  Start by seeing how you (and your employees) fit into various cultures.  You can also include cultures that existing customers and contacts belong to.  Make a list of these cultures, ranking them by either their size or perceived cohesiveness.

2.  Ratings.  Who wants or needs your product the most?  Is your product universal or specific?  To whom can you most easily explain the logical connection between what you offer and what they want in life?

3.  Relationship.  Build your relationship the same way you would a friendship - extend an offer, show interest, look for common ground and share enthusiastically.