6 Real-Life Target Audience Examples to Help You Define Your Own (B2B and B2C)

target audience examples - hero image

Target audience research allows you to better understand your potential customer(s) and their underlying pain points.

The more you drill down into your high-value audience groups through strategic market segmentation, the closer you are to your next sale.

Learn the ins and outs of target marketing with plenty of examples to inform your strategy.

What Is a Target Audience?

How a target audience differs from a buyer persona, how psychographic and demographic data informs marketing campaigns.

  • How To Analyze and Define Your Target Audience

Do Target Audiences Vary by Channel?

3 b2b target audience examples.

  • 3 B2C Target Audience Examples

A target audience is a group of consumers within a predefined target market that has been identified as the best recipients for a particular marketing message. And a target market broadly describes B2C or B2B consumers who care about your product or service and, under the right conditions, are most likely to spend money with your company.

An audience is a segment within that market.

For example, the target market for an online bookkeeping tool might include businesses with over $500K in annual revenue.

So a target audience profile for our bookkeeping program might be technology stakeholders with influence on decision-makers at companies that haven’t reviewed their accounting software needs in over two years. It’s much more specific than our target market, which is important because we can craft content marketing collateral that speaks directly to the challenges and needs of this influential group.

To create effective messaging within your marketing campaigns, you first need to define your target audience.

When marketers try to appeal to the broadest possible audience for their products and services, they often end up feeling exhausted without much to show for their efforts. Their messaging seems inauthentic and doesn’t really resonate with anyone in particular.

To create effective messaging within your marketing campaigns, you first need to define your target audience. Doing so will help you engage key decision-makers and eventually convert them into loyal customers.

At this point, you might be asking, “Isn’t that just a buyer persona?” And while the two concepts are similar, they are distinct enough to warrant further discussion.

A buyer persona is a fictional character who represents one of your ideal customers . They have names, occupations, likes and dislikes, as well as challenges and ambitions.

While target audiences are valuable tools for many types of content marketing campaigns, buyer personas tend to be more useful in a B2B context, because they focus on challenges and business information. For example, a B2C company that sells protein bars would not need to create multiple personas, because people from many backgrounds and with varying job titles might purchase their products.

In a B2B context, targeting personas can be extremely valuable, especially when employing content marketing strategies. A SaaS company might create personas for each stakeholder involved in the buying process, for instance. An HR persona might be interested in blog content that addresses common pain points, while a CFO persona would be more interested in white papers with lots of data.

Personas aren’t entirely without value to B2C marketers, however. They can serve as useful guides when crafting messages to engage and inform consumers.

A persona typically includes:

  • Personal information: Name, age and geographic location.
  • Content preferences: Favorite channels, content formats, tone and style.
  • Business background information: Job title, level of influence in decision making processes.
  • Objectives: Measurable goals related to the persona’s job.
  • Challenges: Frustrations and pain points standing in the way of the persona’s goals.

Your target audiences should be informed by both demographic and psychographic information. The former category describes your intended audience on a superficial level, while the latter describes their motivations.

  • Demographics may include cursory information such as gender, age, income and marital status.
  • Psychographics include personal interests, attitudes, values, desires and specific behaviors.

When defining and targeting an audience, demographics will only get you so far. For example, if you’re promoting a B2B SaaS solution, your specific audience may be made up of men and women ages 35-49 who earn more than $100,000 annually. That’s all good information to have, but it applies to too broad of a cohort.

Psychographic data for this specific audience could include: worrying about lost resources throughout a supply chain, wanting to eliminate redundancies, or being skeptical of flashy new technology.

Combined, demographic and psychographic information can help you fine-tune your audience targeting goals.

Combined, demographic and psychographic information can help you fine-tune your audience targeting goals. The challenge is where to find this data. Psychographic research may include interviewing existing clients, conducting polls and analyzing your site traffic.

How to Analyze and Define Your Target Audience

Defining the target audience for a particular marketing campaign requires data. Unfortunately, there isn’t a crystal ball that can tell you how to adjust your messages to bring in the right audience. But that’s not to say you can’t trust your gut.

You know your business better than anyone, so combine that experience with hard data to generate a market segment and target audience that is characteristically human, and also strategically defined by scientifically gathered data.

A Three-Step Approach To Defining A Target Audience

1. Conduct target customer research

Your business plan , content marketing strategy, professional experience and prior knowledge of your target customers will lay the foundation for your research. Compile all of your existing intelligence on your target market, and look for opportunities to learn more about it. For example, you might know that most of your customers are senior-level business people, but you may not know if they all have the same job title, or if they all consume content through the same channels.

To uncover key audience insights, use Google Analytics to drill down into your site traffic and perform a deep audience analysis. Custom audience reports can show you demographic and psychographic data, geographic locations as well as the types of technology your site visitors use.

2. Analyze the market

Once you know a little more about your target customers and have compared that data with your business process or goals, it’s time to get some context. Not only are you attempting to place the right messages in front of the right people at the right time, but you’re also competing with potentially thousands of other messages.

Review your competitors’ marketing efforts and business plans to better understand what you’re up against. Likewise, you’ll want to be aware of any other campaigns your business is currently running, as you don’t want to cannibalize your share of audience attention.

3. Define the audience

With hard data in tow and a thorough understanding of your audience’s interests, challenges and needs, it’s time to create a concise target audience to which you can direct your content marketing efforts.

Ask yourself these questions as you work to define your target audience:

  • What problems does your product or service solve?
  • Which demographic characteristics influence the decision-making process?
  • Which psychographic traits impact content consumption?
  • How does your audience prefer to engage with brands similar to yours?
  • Is your audience segment large enough?

That last question is particularly important, because it will prevent you from sinking resources into ultra-niche campaigns with low ROI. Niche marketing is certainly a useful tactic, but your target audiences should represent a group large enough to reach through social and organic channels.

3-step approach to defining target audience

Knowing your intended audience is only one half of the equation. The next step in the target audience analysis process is to determine where this group consumes content so you can develop an actionable marketing strategy.

Depending on the demographic and psychographic data you’ve collected, some channels will be more effective at engaging your intended audience than others. For instance, some decision-makers in a market segment may be more likely to open an email than to click on a social media ad.

Within channels, a specific audience may prefer unique platforms. B2B buyers are more inclined to seek out information on LinkedIn than Instagram, for example.

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(Keep in mind the following custom audiences are meant to inform specific campaign messages! These companies may have different audience segments for other targeting efforts. Each example is based on a real client I’ve worked with.)

1. Bookkeeping SaaS Solution

Key demographics

  • Age range: 35-49.
  • Gender: 65% male, 35% female.
  • Common job titles: Head of Digital, Senior Accountant, Chief Financial Officer.

Key psychographics

  • Values job security.
  • Likes to review all the data before making a decision.
  • Striving for a better work-life balance.
  • Skeptical of solutions that promise to solve all their problems.
  • Their current digital solution is showing its age.
  • Current lack of third-party integration is slowing down internal processes.
  • Boss/shareholder demands are making work stressful.

Preferred channels

  • Email for first contact, then phone conversations.
  • Browses social media platforms like LinkedIn , mostly looking for news.

Preferred content types

  • Data-rich white papers.
  • Case studies.

target audience examples - example 1

2. Business Travel Company

  • Age range: 30-55.
  • Gender: 70% female, 30% male.
  • Common job titles: Procurement Officer, Travel Buyer, Supplier Relations Expert.
  • Values relationships when working with suppliers.
  • Dislikes working on repetitive, mundane tasks.
  • Is wary of handing off responsibilities to a third party.
  • Suppliers fail to deliver on promised rates.
  • Doesn’t have enough data to make informed decisions.
  • Not familiar with ground-level travel concerns.
  • Looks for answers via organic search.
  • Communicates with other procurement professionals on social media platforms.
  • Easily digestible blog posts.

target audience examples - example 2

3. Facility Security Services

  • Age range: 45-60.
  • Gender: 80% male, 20% female.
  • Common job titles: Facility Manager, Head of Security.
  • Doesn’t like drawn-out negotiations.
  • Likes to be prepared for everything; gets nervous when things are uncertain.
  • Prefers to get pitches from two or three companies before making a decision.
  • Needs to save costs, but isn’t willing to sacrifice quality of service.
  • Needs a third-party supplier with technology integrations.
  • Email for marketing materials.
  • Blogs and news sites for industry trends.
  • Data-rich infographics.
  • Email newsletters.

target audience examples - example 3

B2C Target Audience Examples

4. athletic shoes.

  • Age range: 18-29
  • Gender: 60% male, 40% female
  • Wants to look stylish, but doesn’t like to follow trends.
  • Looks up to sports figures.
  • Strongly values friendships and community.
  • Loyal to one or two athletic brands.
  • Finding athletic footwear that is both stylish and comfortable.
  • Loves the look of designer sneakers, but can’t afford them.
  • Follows athletes and influencers on social media.
  • Watches sponsored events on YouTube.
  • Looks for exercise tips on Google.
  • Social media posts.
  • Image-rich articles.

target audience examples -example 4

5. Organic Protein Bars

  • Age range: 18-35.
  • Gender: 50% female, 50% male.
  • Strives to eat food that is nutritious and sustainable, but isn’t always successful.
  • Loves to hang out with friends in nature.
  • Feels loyalty toward brands with values similar to their own.
  • Finds it difficult to eat healthy food when they’re busy.
  • Has a limited food budget.
  • Needs a protein source that is compact and easy to transport.
  • Follows nature photography accounts on Instagram.
  • Watches supplement reviews on YouTube.
  • Follows health gurus on Twitter.
  • Event marketing.

target audience examples - example 5

6. Credit Union Mortgage Products

  • Age range: 25-39.
  • Gender: 50% male, 50% female.
  • Enjoys spending time with friends and family at home.
  • Tries to spend their money wisely, but isn’t always sure how to do that.
  • Craves stability, but fears another economic recession.
  • Feels anxious every time they think about having a mortgage.
  • Is thinking about mortgages for the first time ever.
  • Unclear on the difference between a bank and a credit union.
  • Reads online news sites.
  • Downloads how-to guides online.
  • Watches home-hunting videos on YouTube.

target audience examples - example 6

When you have well-defined, custom audiences informed by strong research, you can stop waiting for buyers to stumble upon your brand and start actively pursuing them with precise messaging.

example of target customers in business plan

Editor’s note: Updated November 2021.

Michael O'Neill

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example of target customers in business plan

Mike O'Neill is a writer, editor and content manager in Chicago. When he's not keeping a close eye on Brafton's editorial content, he's auditioning to narrate the next Ken Burns documentary. All buzzwords are his own.

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How to Write a Customer Analysis for a Business Plan

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  • March 21, 2024
  • Business Plan , How to Write

customer analysis

Understanding your customers is essential for any business striving for success. A customer analysis provides valuable insights into the demographics, preferences, behaviors, and needs of your target audience .

This guide will walk you through the process of writing a thorough customer analysis, enabling you to tailor your products, services, and marketing strategies to meet the needs of your customers effectively.

Define Your Target Audience

Begin by clearly defining your target audience : the specific group of people you aim to serve with your products or services.

Consider factors such as age, gender, income level, geographic location, and psychographic traits (e.g., lifestyle, values, interests). Understanding who your customers are is the first step in building a successful business strategy.

  • Example for a Coffee Shop : Your target audience might include young professionals aged 25-40, living in urban areas, who value high-quality coffee and a relaxed atmosphere for socializing or remote work.

Gather Data on Your Customers

Next, gather data on your customers through various sources, including market research surveys, interviews, focus groups, and customer feedback.

Analyze both quantitative data (e.g., demographics, purchase history) and qualitative data (e.g., customer feedback, testimonials) to gain a holistic understanding of your customers’ needs and preferences.

  • Example for a Coffee Shop : Conduct surveys or interviews with your target audience to gather insights into their coffee preferences, frequency of visits to coffee shops, and reasons for choosing one coffee shop over another.

Segment Your Customers

Segment your customers into distinct groups based on common characteristics or behaviors.

This segmentation allows you to tailor your marketing efforts and product offerings to better meet the specific needs of each segment. Common segmentation criteria include demographics, psychographics, behavior, and purchasing patterns.

  • Example for a Coffee Shop : Segment your customers based on their coffee preferences (e.g., espresso lovers, latte enthusiasts), frequency of visits (e.g., daily customers, occasional visitors), and reasons for visiting (e.g., socializing, work meetings).

Analyze Customer Needs and Preferences

Analyze the needs, preferences, and pain points of each customer segment to identify opportunities for product or service improvement.

Consider factors such as price sensitivity, convenience, quality expectations, and brand loyalty. This analysis will help you tailor your offerings to better align with customer expectations.

  • Example for a Coffee Shop : Analyze customer feedback to identify common preferences in coffee flavors, brewing methods, and food options. Use this information to adjust your menu offerings and pricing strategies accordingly.

Assess Customer Behavior

Examine how customers interact with your business at each stage of the buying process, from awareness to purchase and post-purchase.

Identify patterns in customer behavior, such as browsing habits, purchase frequency, and loyalty. This analysis will help you optimize the customer experience and maximize customer satisfaction and retention.

  • Example for a Coffee Shop : Track customer traffic patterns, peak hours, and popular menu items to optimize staffing levels, inventory management, and promotional strategies.

Identify Growth Opportunities

Based on your customer analysis, identify growth opportunities for your business. This could involve expanding into new customer segments, introducing new products or services, or entering new geographic markets.

By understanding your customers’ needs and preferences, you can better position your business for long-term success.

  • Example for a Coffee Shop : Identify opportunities to expand your customer base by offering specialty coffee subscriptions for remote workers or partnering with local businesses to host networking events.

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How to Write the Customer Analysis Section of Your Business Plan

Written by Dave Lavinsky

explaining customer demographics

What is a Customer Analysis?

The customer analysis section which incorporates the essential steps of writing a business plan step-by-step is a key component of your business plan and assesses the customer segments your company serves. The objective of the customer analysis is to justify your market choice, identify differentiators, and prioritize the segments you are targeting.

Components of a Customer Analysis

A complete customer analysis contains 3 primary sections:

  • Identify your target customers
  • Convey the needs of these customers
  • Show how your products and/or services satisfy these needs

Download our Ultimate Business Plan Template here

Why Conduct a Customer Analysis?

A thorough customer analysis provides the following benefits:

  • Supports your market choice and helps you avoid entering too broad a market
  • Helps you focus on serving current customers rather than trying to find new ones
  • Enables you to determine which segments to prioritize and how much effort to put into each one
  • Helps you craft a strategic marketing plan and platform to reach these customer segments

How to Write Your Customer Analysis

The first step of the customer analysis is to define exactly which customers the company is serving. This requires specificity. It is not adequate to say the company is targeting small businesses, for example, because there are several million of these types of customers. Rather, an expert business plan writer must identify precisely the customers it is serving, such as small businesses with 10 to 50 employees based in large metropolitan cities on the West Coast.

When defining your target market, be sure to identify the following:

  • The market segment you are choosing to serve (i.e., age range, annual income, etc.)
  • The geographic location of these customers (i.e., city, region, state)
  • What is the average revenues/income of these customers?

Once the plan has clearly identified and defined the company’s target customers and the customer demographics, it is necessary to determine the size of your target market: How many potential customers fit the given definition and is this customer base growing or decreasing?

Next, the business plan must detail these customers’ needs. Conveying customer needs could take the form of past actions (X% have purchased a similar product in the past), future projections (when interviewed, X% said that they would purchase product/service Y), and/or implications (because X% use a product/service which our product/service enhances/replaces, then X% need our product/service).

Prioritize the needs of your target customer according to how critical they are, and include a description of each in your customer analysis. Be sure to answer questions such as: 

  • What pain points do these customers have? How is their current situation lacking? 
  • What will your product/service do to help solve these problems?

The business plan customer analysis must also detail the drivers of customer decision-making. Sample questions to answer include:

  • Do the customers find price to be more important than the quality of the product or service?
  • Are customers looking for the highest level of reliability, or will they have their own support and just seek a basic level of service?
  • Why will customers purchase your product and/or service rather than look for cheaper alternatives?

Prioritize the benefits of your products and services according to how much difference they make for customers and include a description of each in your customer analysis. Be sure to answer questions such as:

  • What does your product do? How is it unique or better than other similar products?
  • What type of customer could benefit the most from this feature/benefit and why?

Be sure to also show an understanding of the actual decision-making process. Examples of questions to be answered here include:

  • Will the customer consult others in their organization/family before making a decision?
  • Will the customer seek multiple bids?
  • Will the product/service require significant operational changes (e.g., will the customer have to invest time to learn new technologies, and will the product/service cause other members within the organization to lose their jobs? etc.)

Finally, identify each segment you are targeting and how much effort you will put into reaching them. Be sure to answer questions such as:

  • How many customers are in each segment and how much revenue will they generate?
  • What percentage of total industry sales does this represent?
  • What market potential did we estimate for each segment and how does that compare with actual sales? Include the number of leads converted and average deal size.

Example Customer Analysis Template for a Candle Making Company

The needs of this customer segment are that they are looking for high-quality candles that are made with all-natural ingredients. The benefits of their product that are most important to them are that the candles are vegan, eco-friendly, and made with essential oils. Drivers of customer purchase decisions include quality, price, and unique offerings. The company’s target market size is 750,000 people which represent a significant portion of the candle industry. They will put effort into reaching these customers through online advertising, social media posts, and word-of-mouth.

It is essential to truly understand customers to develop a successful business and marketing plan. That’s why including a customer analysis in your business plan is so crucial. Likewise, sophisticated investors require comprehensive profiles of a company’s target customers. By spending the time researching and analyzing customers in your target market, you will develop both enhance your business strategy and funding success.

How to Finish Your Business Plan in 1 Day!

Don’t you wish there was a faster, easier way to finish your business plan?

With Growthink’s Ultimate Business Plan Template you can finish your plan in just 8 hours or less!

Click here to finish your business plan today.

OR, Let Us Develop Your Plan For You

Since 1999, Growthink has developed business plans for thousands of companies that have gone on to achieve tremendous success.

See how Growthink business plan consultants can create your business plan for you.

Other Resources for Writing Your Business Plan

How to Write a Great Business Plan Executive Summary How to Expertly Write the Company Description in Your Business Plan How to Write the Market Analysis Section of a Business Plan Completing the Competitive Analysis Section of Your Business Plan The Management Team Section of Your Business Plan Financial Assumptions and Your Business Plan How to Create Financial Projections for Your Business Plan Best Business Plan Software Everything You Need to Know about the Business Plan Appendix Business Plan Conclusion: Summary & Recap

Other Helpful Business Plan Articles & Templates

Download a Free Business Plan Template

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A step-by-step guide to creating your target customer profile

example of target customers in business plan

Director of Product Marketing at 7shifts

Table of Contents

At some point, you’ll likely struggle with not understanding who your core target customer(s) are.

One powerful strategy that’ll help you on this journey is actually something you might be doing already: customer segmentation. This process involves dividing your customer base into distinct groups based on specific criteria, thus facilitating a clearer definition of your target customer profile.

However, creating target segments requires a thoughtful and systematic approach. 

In the comprehensive guide, I’ll take you through a step-by-step process to create effective target customer segments for your business. From gathering data and defining segments to leveraging insights, you’ll walk away with the knowledge and tools necessary to establish a deeper connection with your target customer profiles, ultimately driving meaningful results.

It's crucial to note that the successful implementation of this strategy hinges on having a product-market fit backed by sufficient data. 

Now, having covered the essential practice of customer segmentation for a comprehensive audience understanding, let's begin by exploring the key differences between a target consumer profile, an ideal customer profile, and a buyer persona. Understanding the nuances between these terms is vital for crafting effective go-to-market (GTM) strategies that cater to specific customer needs and preferences.

Target Customer Profile vs. Ideal Customer Profile vs. Buyer Persona

Target and ideal customer profiles are often used interchangeably but have distinct meanings. While a target consumer profile focuses on identifying several potential customers, an ideal customer profile represents one you're targeting. 

Buyer persona complements both types of customer profiles.  

example of target customers in business plan

Having clarified these terms, let's explore how each contributes to a robust GTM strategy.

Target Consumer Profile

Target customer profiling provides a foundational understanding of the audience your SaaS business aims to reach.

It's a broad classification that outlines various segments within the overall market. This profile focuses on identifying different types of potential customers based on demographics, geographic location, industry, company size, and other general factors. 

Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

In contrast, an ideal customer profile represents a more refined and specific subset within the target consumer profile. It goes beyond basic demographics to include criteria that make a customer an ideal fit for a company's offerings.

When developing an ICP, businesses use insights from their target consumer profile to identify a customer's most valuable and desirable characteristics. This helps concentrate efforts on customers who are not only part of the broader target but are also the most likely to derive significant value from the products or services.

Buyer Persona

A buyer persona complements both the target and ideal customer profiles. It is a detailed and semi-fictional representation of an individual within the broader audience.

This specific contact is the focus when prospecting, and the buyer persona helps understand customers better.

SaaS businesses can tailor their content, messaging, and product development to meet specific needs and interests by delving into the persona's demographics, behaviors, and concerns.

Buyer personas contribute depth and specificity to the target consumer profile, aiding in the creation of an ideal customer profile by identifying the attributes that make a customer an ideal fit.

The impact of defining your target customer

Defining a target customer provides a crystal-clear understanding of who your SaaS product is trying to serve. This, in turn, empowers your company to strategically tailor your marketing, product development, and customer service efforts. Doing so, ultimately, leads to stronger acquisition, retention, and monetization .

The impact of defining your target customer profile manifests in several key benefits, including: 

Improved marketing messaging

Craft a compelling value proposition that resonates with your core target customer. By understanding their needs and preferences, you can tailor your marketing messages to directly address their customer pain points, fostering a stronger connection and engagement.

A more focused product roadmap

Utilize target customer profiles to inform and prioritize your product development roadmap . By honing in on your core customer's specific pain points and requirements, you can ensure that your product enhancements are aligned with their expectations, resulting in a more focused and impactful customer experience.

Pricing undefined packaging

Develop a well-defined pricing strategy by building product tiers that bundle the most relevant features for your target customer. This approach ensures that your pricing and packaging align with the perceived value of your core audience, maximizing monetization opportunities while providing tailored solutions.

Understanding the impact of defining your target customer, let's now explore the practical methods to achieve this through customer segmentation and buyer personas.

Two methods that help define your target customer

The two methods that help define your target customers are:

  • Customer segmentation
  • Buyer personas

Let’s dive deeper into these concepts and how to choose when to use them.

1. Customer segmentation 

Through quantitative data analysis, customer segmentation divides the company's customer base into distinct groups or segments based on shared characteristics such as demographics, behavior, or purchasing habits.

The segmentation is like dividing your party guests into general categories, such as children, teenagers, adults, and seniors. Doing so helps you understand each group's different needs and preferences, allowing you to plan activities, select music, and arrange the party layout accordingly.

2. Buyer personas

Buyer personas are fictional, generalized representations of the company's ideal customer. 

They are based on qualitative insights from market/ customer research and are used to create a detailed profile of your target customer.

A buyer persona represents a fictional yet highly detailed profile.

Example of buyer personas

For instance, within the adult segment, you might have the following:

  • A buyer persona named "Adventurous Annie" loves outdoor activities, values sustainability, and enjoys trying new foods. 
  • Another persona, "Busy Bob," might be a professional seeking convenience and time-saving solutions.

The 5-step framework to create target customer segments

Let's break down this 5-step framework that will guide you from defining segmentation criteria to sharing impactful target customer profiles across your SaaS organization.

Step 1: Define segmentation criteria

Choosing the right profiling segmentation criteria is a bit of art and science based on the stage of your business. The goal should be finding a way to segment the base that creates differentiation between each customer profile.

The first step is to determine the criteria to segment your customers. It could include demographics, psychographic traits, or behavioral characteristics.

The goal is to define a set of criteria to segment your user base.

Depending on the size of the company, there are two methods you can use:

  • First Principles: Use a set of criteria to segment your base (e.g., business industry, annual revenue, # of employees).
  • Correlation analysis : see what characteristics have a strong connection.

SaaS example

Say you’re a B2B SaaS company that targets SMBs. Based on past analysis and customer research, you have decided the best way to segment your customer base is by the business industry.

So, you define grouping customer segments by the following:

  • Field service businesses (e.g., landscaping, trades, etc.)
  • Knowledge-based businesses (e.g., consultants, marketing agencies)
  • Retail service businesses (e.g., hair undefined nail salons)
  • E-commerce businesses (e.g., Shopify store)
  • Retail product businesses (e.g. bakeries, restaurants)

This will then inform your data analysis by grouping your customers into these five categories.

With the criteria established, let's move on to the next step — conducting a segmentation analysis to derive meaningful insights from your customer base.

Step 2: Conduct segmentation analysis

This next step is conducting your analysis by segmenting your customer base into distinct groups based on how you defined your segmentation criteria (see step #1).

Doing so ensures you get the data you need by each segment and analyze for clear themes.

Data spreadsheet organization

To get started, you want to dump data into spreadsheets, each tab being a specific customer profile. Each tab should list specific behavioral data points and define how large the customer segment is within your user base.

The spreadsheet should include the following:

  • Clearly defined customer segments
  • The size of each segment within your customer base
  • Specific behavior data points for each customer segment

Let’s continue with our example.

SaaS example 

Picture you are a B2B invoicing SaaS company. Your customer profiles are based on business industries, and now you want to overlay your in-product data for each segment.

This would include data points such as:

  • Number of invoices sent
  • Number of customers they have
  • The size of the invoice amount
  • Number of methods they get paid by
  • Monthly revenue from invoices

Step 3: Overlay demographic data across customer segments

The next step in this segmentation process is to overlay the demographic data you collect on each user. 

Adding in demographic data makes these customer profiles more actionable for employees in the company to use because you can start to put a face to a name.

Collecting data in SaaS onboarding 

Much of the data collected by SaaS companies at onboarding is demographic-related and starts to put a face to your customer segments. This data might include their industry, annual revenue, number of employees, how many years they have been in business, etc.

To illustrate, consider Shopify’s use of a multi-step signup process. 

On the initial page, users are prompted to provide three essential pieces of information about their e-commerce business.

Shopify's example of segmentation in the onboarding process

Upon completion of these initial fields, the next page appears with ten additional questions related to the business - that offer great customer profile data.

Shopify's segmentation in the user onboarding experience

The strategic aim is to integrate this collected data into each previously defined customer segment. By doing so, each segment's impact is heightened by including behavioral and demographic insights.

The subsequent step involved adding demographic data (e.g., annual revenue, number of employees, business age, etc.) into the five customer segments we created.

Step 4: Build your target customer profiles

Now that you have finished your data exercise, the next step is to build out these customer profiles into an artifact.

The goal is to build an artifact so that anyone at your company can easily understand who your customer segments are.

Create a PDF or slide deck

The best way to do this is to create a PDF or slide deck that showcases each customer segment.

These customer segments should include the following:

  • Name of each customer segment
  • Photo of them
  • Description of who they are
  • Key demographic data points
  • Key behavior data points

example of target customers in business plan

Make your artifact 

Our next step is to create our five customer segments with a designer's help to create a visually appealing artifact that people can easily understand.

I have included a template you can use here .

Step 5: Share your target customer profiles

Our final step is to share the artifact across the company to get people to understand how to use it.

Getting teams to understand how to use this artifact is critical to driving internal adoption. The best way to do this is the following:

  • Present these customer segments at an all hands.
  • Include this artifact as part of new hiring/onboarding training.

Getting all teams to understand how to apply the insights from the customer segmentation artifact is essential.

The two ways to apply the customer segmentation artifact include: 

  • Marketing teams can use this to help target better, brainstorm new channels to acquire, and improve their positioning/messaging on their website.
  • Product teams can use this to help prioritize the most critical product features for each of their segments.

Regularly revisit and refine your target customer profiles

Your customer segments are constantly changing as the SaaS company scales, but completing this initiative will help the entire org make better decisions to drive more revenue for any PLG company. 

You should be revisiting your customer segments every six to 12 months.

Creating target customer segments is a strategic process that can significantly enhance your marketing efforts and customer engagement.

With a well-defined and data-driven approach to customer segmentation, you'll be better equipped to deliver personalized experiences, drive customer loyalty, and ultimately achieve your business goals. 

Start implementing my five-step framework today, and unlock the power of target customer profiles to elevate your business strategy. Then, continue on your journey of building your product-led business, be sure to check out the ProductLed GTM System™️ . This free framework shows you step-by-step how to drive predictable, profitable growth for 7-figure product-led businesses – without the chaos and overwhelm that most founders deal with.

Learn the nine components of the ProductLed System now!  

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How to Write a Business Plan: Target Market Analysis

The Business Plan and the Importance of Defining Your Target Market

Susan Ward wrote about small businesses for The Balance for 18 years. She has run an IT consulting firm and designed and presented courses on how to promote small businesses.

example of target customers in business plan

Conducting a Market Analysis

Polling your target market, writing the market analysis, online tools for market research, u.s. online market research sources, canadian online market research, local sources of market research, doing your own market research.

 Creative Commons CC0

The market analysis is basically the target market section of your business plan . It is a thorough examination of the ideal people to whom you intend to sell your products or services.  

Even if you intend on selling a product or service only in your community, you won't be selling that service to everyone who lives there. Knowing exactly what type(s) of people might be interested in buying your product or service and how many of them reside in your projected area or region is fundamental in creating your market analysis.

Once target market data has been established, you'll also work on sales projections within specific time frames, as well as how prospective sales might be affected by trends and policies.

Research is key and cornerstone of any solid  business plan .

Don't Skip This Step!

Don't skip market research; otherwise, you could end up starting a business that doesn't have a paying market.

Use these general terms as linchpins in research data for the market analysis section of your business plan, and to identify your target market:

What age range are you catering products/services to? Kids? Adults? Seniors? Gen X? Millennials?
Are you targeting men, women, or both sexes?
Are your target customers married or single, or divorced?
What is their family structure (number of children, extended family, etc.)?
Where do they live? Are you selling locally? Regionally, nationally, or internationally?
How much education do they have?
What is their income?
What do they do for a living?
Are they members of a particular religious group?
Are they members of a particular language group?
What is their lifestyle like?
What motivates them?
What is the size of the target market?

But don't stop here. To succinctly define your target market, poll or survey members of your prospective clients or customers to ask specific questions directly related to your products or services. For instance, if you plan to sell computer-related services, ask questions relating to the number of computing devices your prospective customers own and how often they require servicing. If you plan on selling garden furniture and accessories, ask what kinds of garden furniture or accessories your potential customers have bought in the past, how often, and what they expect to buy within the next one, three, and five years.

Answers to these and other questions related to your market are to help you understand your market potential.

The goal of the information you collect is to help you project how much of your product or service you'll be able to sell. Review these important questions you need to try to answer using the data you collect:

  • What proportion of your target market has used a product similar to yours before?
  • How much of your product or service might your target market buy? (Estimate this in gross sales and/or in units of product/service sold.)
  • What proportion of your target market might be repeat customers?
  • How might your target market be affected by demographic shifts?
  • How might your target market be affected by economic events (e.g. a local mill closing or a big-box retailer opening locally)?
  • How might your target market be affected by larger socio-economic trends?
  • How might your target market be affected by government policies (e.g. new bylaws or changes in taxes)?

One purpose of the market analysis is to ensure you have a viable business idea.

Find Your Buying Market

Use your market research to make sure people don't just like your business idea, but they're also willing to pay for it.

If you have information suggesting that you have a large enough market to sustain your business goals, write the market analysis in the form of several short paragraphs using appropriate headings for each. If you have several target markets, you may want to number each. 

Sections of your market analysis should include:

  • Industry Description and Outlook
  • Target Market
  • Market Research Results
  • Competitive Analysis

Remember to properly cite your sources of information within the body of your market analysis as you write it. You and other readers of your business plan, such as potential investors, will need to know the sources of the statistics or opinions that you've gathered.

There are several online resources to learn if your business idea is something worth pursing, including:

  • Keyword searches can give you an overall sense of potential demand for your product or service based on the number of searches.
  • Google Trends analysis can tell you how the number of searches has changed over time.
  • Social media campaigns can give you an indication of the potential customer interest in your business idea.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has information on doing your market research and analysis , as well as a list of free small business data and trends resources you can use to conduct your research. Consider these sources for data collection:

  • SBA  Business Data and Statistics  
  • The U.S. Census Bureau maintains a huge database of demographic information that is searchable by state, county, city/town, or zip code using its census data tool . Community, housing, economic, and population surveys are also available.
  • The U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has extensive statistics on the economy including consumer income/spending/consumption, business activity, GDP, and more, all of which are searchable by location.

The Government of Canada offers a guide on doing market research and tips for understanding the data you collect. Canadian data resources include:

  • Statistics Canada  offers demographic and economic data.
  • The  Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC)  offers market research and consulting with industry experts.
  • The Canada Business Network provides business information to entrepreneurs by province/territory, including market research data.

There are also a great many local resources for building target market information to explore, including:

  • Local library
  • Local Chamber of Commerce
  • Board of Trade
  • Economic Development Centre
  • Local government agent's office
  • Provincial business ministry
  • Local phone book

All of these will have information helpful in defining your target market and providing insights into trends.

The above resources are secondary sources of information, in which others have collected and compiled the data. To get specific information about your business, consider conducting your own market research . For instance, you might want to design a questionnaire and survey your target market to learn more about their habits and preferences relating to your product or service.

Market research is time-consuming but is an important step in affording your business plan validity. If you don't have the time or the research skills to thoroughly define your target market yourself, hiring a person or firm to do the research for you can be a wise investment.​

Small Business Administration. " Market Research and Competitive Analysis. " Accessed Jan. 13, 2020.


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How to Write a Customer Analysis Section for Your Business Plan

Customer Analysis Template

Free Customer Analysis Template

Ayush Jalan

  • February 12, 2024

Customer Analysis_ Step-by-step Guide Understanding Your Customer

A successful business idea equips customers with the tools necessary to help them reach their goals and fulfill their needs—professional or personal. To create such products and services that meet (and exceed) your customers’ expectations, you need to study their personas via customer analysis.

Customer analysis is a vital part of your business plan that helps you identify, define, and understand your customer base. Analyzing your customers is also crucial for creating a successful marketing plan, as it helps you communicate better with your customers.

In this article, you will learn how to conduct a customer analysis section for your business plan paired with a customer analysis example to help you create customer personas to study their personality traits, goals, challenges they face, and more.

What Is Customer Analysis?

Customer analysis is a comprehensive understanding of your customer base. It helps identify and describe your ideal customer. Through this in-depth analysis, you determine their needs, challenges, goals, and other important considerations. Given this info, it then helps you understand how effectively your products cater to them.

It further helps you optimize your strategic marketing process to create targeted advertisements, customize and prioritize specific features during product development, and make adjustments in your current business plan to align with your customer’s ever-changing demands.

How to Write a Customer Analysis Section

Writing a customer analysis includes extensive research and collecting data from various sources. This data consists of qualitative and quantitative aspects which help you write an accurate customer analysis for your business plan.

Steps to create customer analysis for your business plan

Writing a customer analysis has four main steps:

Step 1: Identify your customers

The primary step is to identify your potential customers and define their specific characteristics about them. The attained factual information is segmented into the following categories:

  • Demographic: Age, gender, income
  • Geographic: Location, type of area (Rural, suburban, urban)
  • Psychographic: Values, interests, beliefs, personality, lifestyle, social class
  • Technographic: Type of technology the buyer is using; tech-savviness
  • Behavioral: Habits, frequent actions, buying patterns
  • Industry (For B2B): Based on the industry a company belongs to.
  • Business size (For B2B): Size of the company

To obtain the above data, a great place to start for established businesses is your customer database. If you aim to expand this information, you can use your existing communication channels to gather further details through surveys.

If you are a startup, conducting an audience analysis  might seem impossible as you don’t have an existing customer base. Fortunately, there are numerous ways through which you can study your potential customers. A few of them are:

  • Identifying who would benefit from your product/service
  • Analyzing your competitors to understand their target customers
  • Using social media to prompt potential buyers to answer questionnaires

example of target customers in business plan

Want to create a Customer Persona in Easy Steps?

Generate valuable customer insights in minutes with Free Customer Persona Generator .

Step 2: Define the needs of your Customers

Now that you have identified your customers, the next step is to understand and specify their needs and challenges. This is the step where you need to go hands-on with your research. Getting to know your customers’ needs helps you determine whether or not your product or service hits the mark.

To understand the needs of your customers, you can adopt the following approaches:

1. Engage directly with potential Customers

A very reliable way to get to know your customers is to simply ask them, either in person or on a call. You can reach out to your customers, conduct one-on-one interviews, create focus groups, and invite buyers to test your new products. You can collect an ample amount of data through these techniques.

However, we recommend prioritizing accuracy over the quantity of data.

A technique that can help you get a deeper insight into your customer’s needs and opinions is the five whys technique . While practicing so, be mindful of the way you conduct the interview. It is essential to keep the customers in a comfortable and conversational environment to attain accurate answers.

2. Collect data from your Customer support

Customer support is the place where you can find feedback and criticism given by your customers. Analyzing this data helps you understand the pain points of your customers. You can further elaborate on this data by interacting with the customers who had issues with your products.

3. Run surveys and mention statistics

Talking to your customers helps you get qualitative information that you can use to alter your product or services according to your customers. The next part is to attain quantitative information, in other words, presenting numbers to support the previous data.

Conducting surveys is one of the commonly used methods for quantifying information. You can conduct in-app surveys, post-purchase surveys, or link surveys in email and apps, etc.

The second method is by collecting statistical data to support your conclusions from the interviews. These include stating studies related to customer choices, results from popular surveys, etc.

Step 3: Create a Customer Persona

Now, it’s time you present the information using a customer persona. A customer persona is a representation of a segment of customers with similar traits. Creating customer personas helps you process the data more efficiently.

You can use customer persona templates that are available online. To help get you started, we have created a customer persona example.

Customer Persona Example

Customer profile example of an internet service provider:

customer persona example

  • About: A lot of customers remain at home and have a minimal and easy-going lifestyle. They need high-speed, interruption-free internet access.
  • Demographics: Age is between 30 and 40, has a laid-back lifestyle, lives in suburban areas, and the income range is between $10,000 to $40,000.
  • Professional role: Shop owners, employees, freelancers, etc.
  • Identifiers/Personality traits: Introverts, like routines, makes schedules prefer online shopping, and stick with the companies they trust.
  • Goals: Wants easily available service, and 24×7 customer support, prefers self-service technologies and chatbots over interacting with representatives.
  • Challenges: Fluctuating internet connection while working or consuming media. Not enough signal coverage.

Step 4: Explain the product alignment to the Customer’s Needs

You’ve gathered info and created customer personas. The final step is to explain how your product or service caters to the needs of your customers. Here, you specify the solution you offer to your customers to tackle the challenges they face.

Mention the USPs of your product and its features, and they benefit the customer. Here, you also mention how your offerings make your customers’ lives better.

Create Better Solutions with Customer Analysis

Understanding your customers inside out helps you assist them better in solving their problems while also achieving success. Analyze your customers as often as required to stay updated about their ever-changing needs.

This helps you create better offerings to consistently fulfill their expectations. As a result, this builds up loyalty over time with each success.

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About the Author

example of target customers in business plan

Ayush is a writer with an academic background in business and marketing. Being a tech-enthusiast, he likes to keep a sharp eye on the latest tech gadgets and innovations. When he's not working, you can find him writing poetry, gaming, playing the ukulele, catching up with friends, and indulging in creative philosophies.

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Plan Projections

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Home > Business Plan > Target Market in a Business Plan

Market Size in a Business Plan

Target Market in a Business Plan

… we are targeting this part of the market …

What is the Target Market?

Target Market in a Business Plan

Target Market Segments

Your product will not be of equal interest to all potential customers, as they do not all have the same needs and characteristics. This section of the business plan deals with the analysis of the target market into different groups of customers (customer or target market segments) each having distinct characteristics and needs from the product.

The target market segmentation strategy depends on the business and the product, but generally segmentation falls into the following customer characteristics groups.

Psychographic segmentation

Psychographic segmentation splits up a sales market of a business based on such things as the social class, lifestyle choices, personality traits, tastes, attitudes, and the opinions of its customers.

Psychographic market segmentation examples include the promotion of products such as cars as these often reflect a customers lifestyle, and leisure activities. For example, a car business might identify customers who are interested in keeping the environment green and promote hybrid cars to them, or a business involved in activity holidays will seek to market to customers who show a preference for an active lifestyle.

Demographic segmentation

  • Social class
  • Size of family
  • Nationality

Geographic Segmentation

Geographic segmentation is the process of splitting up a sales market of a business based on the geographical location of the customers. It is a particularly important marketing tool when the business is a multinational, worldwide business, but is also used by businesses to split their markets into region, county, state, city, neighborhood, or postal code.

A geographic segmentation example would be seasonal clothing items such as coats and swimwear. In contrast, in a colder climate coats would be marketed and sold all year round whereas swimwear would be highly seasonal during the holiday period. In a hot climate swimwear would be the all year round product and winter coats might not be sold at all.

Behavioral segmentation

Behavioral segmentation is the process of splitting up the sales market based on brand loyalty, usage, benefits required.

Target Market Presentation in the Business Plan

The business plan target market section can be presented in a number of formats, but a listing of the major customer segments together with a pie chart will show the investor where the main potential for the product lies. In the example below, the market is split into four main segments both in terms of number of customers and percentage of the total target market.

target market 1.0

The average customer spend is also included, to reconcile the total target market back to the served available market (SAM) in monetary terms. Finally, a brief statement about the growth prospects for the market is included to show the investor the potential for growth in your chosen customer segments.

When identifying the target-market segments, it is important to be as specific as possible about the customer characteristics which make up each segment. In choosing which segments to concentrate on, take into account the size and potential for growth of each segment, and identify clearly what benefits, both emotional and financial, the product provides for the customer.

This is part of the financial projections and Contents of a Business Plan Guide , a series of posts on what each section of a simple business plan should include. The next post in this series is about the analysis of the competition for the target-market.

About the Author

Chartered accountant Michael Brown is the founder and CEO of Plan Projections. He has worked as an accountant and consultant for more than 25 years and has built financial models for all types of industries. He has been the CFO or controller of both small and medium sized companies and has run small businesses of his own. He has been a manager and an auditor with Deloitte, a big 4 accountancy firm, and holds a degree from Loughborough University.

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example of target customers in business plan

Small Business Trends

What is a target market and how to pick one (examples and template included).

In this guide, we’ll explore what a target market is, how to define one, and why it’s so important. Let’s get started!

Table of Contents

What is Target Marketing?

target market

Before you start a business, it’s also important to write a business plan that includes a personal brand statement and a vision statement to clearly define your goals and objectives.

How to Define Your Target Market

1. conduct market research, 2. define your unique selling proposition (usp).

Your USP is what differentiates your product or service from competitors and should be tailored to meet the needs of your target market. By clearly defining your USP, you can create a compelling marketing message that resonates with potential customers.

3. Analyze Your Competition

4. segment your market, 5. determine personas, 6. refine your strategy.

Based on the insights you have gathered in Steps 1-5, refine your overall marketing strategy to best cater to each segment of customers. Things you can refine include messaging, promotions and pricing, content, and channels of distribution.

Defining Your Target Market Template

Target market template:, why knowing your target market is so important for your marketing strategy.

Without a proper understanding of the needs and wants of your target audience, it’s nearly impossible to craft a message that will resonate and result in sales.

Target Market Segmentation

Take, for example, a clothing brand using psychographic segmentation to target fashion-forward young adults who prioritize sustainability. This approach enabled them to craft a resonant marketing message.

Psychographic Segmentation

Demographic segmentation, geographic target market.

A geographic target market is defined by the consumer’s location. This type of target market focuses on reaching consumers in a specific geographic area.

Firmographic Segmentation

Behavioral segmentation, types of target markets.

B2B (Business-to-Business) is an industry term used to describe companies that sell products or services to other businesses rather than individual consumers.

Niche Markets

Knowing your niche market can help you create more targeted ads and better understand the specific needs and wants of potential customers within that group.

How Big Should a Target Market be?

Target market examples, starbucks target market.

They focus on providing a convenient and comfortable experience for their customers, with a wide variety of coffee and food options.

Nike Target Market

Tesla target market, disney target market.

CompanyTarget MarketFocusCharacteristics
StarbucksBusy professionals, college students, and older adultsProviding a convenient and comfortable experience with a wide variety of coffee and food options- Consumers who frequent high-traffic areas
- Willing to pay a premium for high-quality coffee and an inviting atmosphere
NikeConsumers who value fitness and healthy living, including serious athletes, fitness enthusiasts, and casual athletesProviding high-performance athletic apparel and footwear for a wide range of sports and activities- Youth and urban culture
- Interested in collaborations with popular athletes and fashion designers
TeslaEnvironmentally conscious consumers who value innovation and technologyProviding sustainable and efficient electric vehicles and energy solutions- Early adopters of technology
- Looking for an alternative to traditional gasoline vehicles
- Willing to pay a premium for high-performance electric cars
DisneyFamilies and children, including grandparents and adults who are young at heartCreating magical experiences through theme parks, cruises, movies, and TV shows- Willing to pay for the Disney brand experience and for the memories that come with it

Target Marketing Strategies

Developing effective target marketing strategies can help you reach the right customers and increase your return on investment. Here are five target marketing strategies to consider:

Segmenting the MarketDividing the market into smaller groups of customers with similar characteristics- Allows for more specific, tailored marketing strategies
- Higher chances of reaching the right customers
- Can help increase customer engagement and conversion rates
- Requires comprehensive market research
- Can be time-consuming and expensive
- Difficulties might arise in correctly identifying and defining segments
Creating Buyer PersonasCreating a fictional representation of the ideal customer- Helps to understand customer needs, wants, and pain points
- Can aid in tailoring marketing messages
- Enables more personal and relatable marketing
- Risk of oversimplification or stereotype
- Requires comprehensive and ongoing customer research
- Real customers might not perfectly align with created personas
Developing a Unique Value Proposition (UVP)Creating a statement that communicates the unique benefits of the product or service- Helps to differentiate from competition
- Clearly communicates value to potential customers
- Can drive targeted customer attraction
- Difficulty in finding truly unique benefits
- Requires in-depth understanding of the market and competitors
- Needs constant revision to remain relevant
Using Data and AnalyticsUsing data analysis to understand the target market and develop effective marketing strategies- Provides quantitative basis for decision making
- Helps in identifying customer behaviors and trends
- Can lead to more efficient and targeted marketing
- Requires skills and tools to collect, analyze, and interpret data
- Can be expensive, especially for smaller businesses
- Issues related to privacy and data security
Test and OptimizeTesting and refining marketing strategies based on results- Helps to improve effectiveness of marketing strategies
- Allows for constant refinement and learning
- Can improve ROI of marketing efforts
- Can be time-consuming
- Requires resources for ongoing testing and analysis
- May lead to short-term failures as part of the learning process

What is a target market?

Can you have multiple target markets, how do i answer the question ‘what is your target market’.

This could include demographic information such as age, gender, income level, and geographic location, and/or psychographic information such as values, interests, lifestyle choices, or preferences.

What are the 3 common target markets?

How detailed should a target market be what is the purpose of a target market, what is the difference between target market and target audience.

The difference between a target market and a target audience is that a target market is the group of potential customers that your company is aiming to reach, while a target audience is the people who are most likely to purchase your product or service.

How to Define Your Target Market

Male entrepreneur in his barber shop giving a customer a haircut. This customer is part of the entrepreneur's target market.

4 min. read

Updated April 4, 2024

One of the most powerful tools of small business marketing strategy is defining and addressing your target market—the audience that you think is most likely to buy your product or service. The key to identifying this customer base is market segmentation, or figuring out the demographics of your specific market.

Common sense makes it seem obvious from afar. You can’t (and shouldn’t) try to sell your product to everyone in the world. You’d waste a lot of money and resources very quickly.

But how do you figure out who your target audience is? Who or what should it be? How would you know? Here are five tips to help you figure it out.

1. Don’t try to please everybody

Strategy is focus. Say you’re planning to start a restaurant ; which of these three options is easier?

  • Pleasing customers 40 to 75 years old, wealthy, much more concerned with healthy eating than cheap eating, appreciating seafood and poultry, liking a quiet atmosphere.
  • Pleasing customers 15 to 30 years old, with limited budgets, who like a loud place with low prices and fast food.
  • Pleasing everybody.

I really hope you chose one of the first two, and not the third. This is the essence of target marketing—divide and conquer. Different groups of people have different pain points and different desires. Most of the time, efforts to please everyone end up pleasing no one.

  • 2. Learn market segmentation

It’s about segments, like pie segments or orange segments—except that in this case, it’s segments of a total market, or TAM .

In my “divide and conquer” example above in the first point, the specific age ranges, wealth, and atmosphere preferences describe particular market segments.

In the illustration here below, U.S. census data divides the population into demographic segments. Demographics are the old standards like age, gender, and so on.

You’ve seen market segmentations referred to frequently in business articles, interviews, and discussions. People will appeal to certain age groups, genders, income levels, and so forth. Divide and conquer is a simple concept; market segmentation is how you make it practical for your business.

Let’s say you think your target market is age 40 to 75 years old, wealthy, and interested in healthy eating. How do you validate your assumption that that demographic will be your ideal target customers? That’s where market research comes in. Talking to customers and potential customers is one of the best ways to do this kind of research, but there are many approaches.

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  • 3. Use segmentation creatively

Don’t limit your target market strategy for market segmentation by age, gender, and economic level.

For example, when I was consulting for Apple Computer, we divided the market into user groups:

  • Small business
  • Large business

I also liked a shopping center segmentation that divided its market into so-called psychographic market segmentation:

  • Kids and cul-de-sacs were affluent upscale suburban families, “a noisy medley of bikes, dogs, carpools, rock music, and sports.”
  • Winner’s circle were wealthy suburban executives, “well-educated, mobile executives and professionals with teen-aged families. Big producers, prolific spenders, and global travelers.”
  • Gen X and babies were upper-middle income, young, white-collar suburbanites.
  • Country squires were wealthy elite ex-urbanites, “where the wealthy have escaped urban stress to live in rustic luxury. Affluence, big bucks in the boondocks.”

I knew a business that segmented its business customers into decision-process types as well:

  • Decision by committee
  • Decision by functional manager
  • Decision by owner

And I call this final example, for lack of a formal definition, strategic intersection.

In the diagram here, the social media services that Have Presence offers are targeted to small business owners who:

  • Want outside help with their social media; and
  • Value business social media; and
  • Have a budget to pay for the service.

Any of these creative segmentations can help you set a target market, and can also be a jumping off point for putting together a user or buyer persona —another useful tool for understanding your target audience and developing better marketing messaging.

  • 4. Consider your own unique identity too

Your business probably reflects who you are and what you like to do, as well as what you do best. Marketing to people you like as the target market is an advantage. If you like the feel of small business better than the big corporate giants, then you’re probably better off setting the small business as a target market.

As Palo Alto Software, the host of Bplans, grew up and grew our business plan software, its founder (that would be me) was more comfortable with the do-it-yourself entrepreneur and business owner than the high-end consultants, so we ended up targeting the do-it-yourselfers in business.

So, somebody who loves fine food, tastefully prepared and served, is probably more comfortable with an upscale target market than with price-sensitive young families.

  • 5. Define your target market early and revise as needed

Do it well as soon as you can, and keep reviewing and refreshing as you go along. You shouldn’t think of your target market as set in stone. As you learn more about your customers, how you define your target market will probably change.

The right target market increases your chances of success because you can communicate better with a well-defined group, and that holds expenses down and makes results better.

Content Author: Tim Berry

Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software , a co-founder of Borland International, and a recognized expert in business planning. He has an MBA from Stanford and degrees with honors from the University of Oregon and the University of Notre Dame. Today, Tim dedicates most of his time to blogging, teaching and evangelizing for business planning.

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example of target customers in business plan

Target Customer: What It Is & How to Identify It

The target customer involves knowing your ideal clients, competitors, and the areas your product or service solves. Learn more.

A new company’s first step in developing a marketing plan is identifying its target customer. Your marketing efforts will be wasted if you don’t know who your ideal client is, even if it seems straightforward.

Nobody will be happy with a person who tries to satisfy everyone. Right? The same is true for your marketing. That’s why it’s so important to identify your target customers.

If your goal is to communicate with absolutely everyone, you will end up communicating with nobody. People could take the time to look at your website or notice your advertisement. But if you don’t have target customers in mind, your advertising and its message won’t connect with anybody.

If you’re wondering where to start, keep reading. This post will inform you about the target customer and its identification steps. First, let’s figure out what target customers mean.

LEARN ABOUT: Purchasing Process

What is the target customer?

Defining your target customer is one of the first steps in creating a marketing research strategy. It’s as important as your goal statement, marketing strategy, or financial plan. As a marketer, it’s essential to know your target audience to tailor your marketing strategy.

LEARN ABOUT: Effective Customer Success Plan

The term “target customer” refers to the audience you want to engage with the help of your marketing efforts. These people are most likely to buy your goods or services if they find out about them through one of your marketing efforts. 

Many different types of data may be used to determine a target audience, including:

  • Demographic data (such as age and gender identification)
  • Psychographic data (such as ambitions, worries, and values)
  • Behavioral data (likely to buy online)

Now we will get into the next section, where we will discuss why it is important to identify your target customers.

Importance of identifying target customer

The effectiveness and success rate of every company’s marketing and sales efforts depend on knowing who their target customers are. The people who will be targeted and given special attention are the ones who will most likely make purchases from certain businesses. 

This improves a company’s marketing and advertising efforts since they may utilize resources wisely and save time without wide, costly advertising. Using advertising to target consumers as a marketing technique may help a firm identify and reach its ideal customers.

A lot of significant time and money is wasted in advertising when companies don’t know their target market or consumers. An organization may attract active consumers and clients by actively marketing to its target market. 

Marketing communications to the target audience may bring repeat business and foster brand loyalty. Additionally, this may result in higher brand awareness, trust, and sales.

How to identify your target customers?

Businesses need to find out who is the target customer. So, here we will explore some tips and tricks to identify your target customer.

  • Conversation with customer

Talk to your prospective consumers. Ask them about the most pressing problems and the methods being used to solve them. Also ask them what they’d do if they didn’t have that solution. 

In the course of developing a new product, we discovered that the client base is often younger and more urban. Focusing on a certain group of customers may help us restrict our target market.

LEARN ABOUT: Client Management

Have conversations with as many different customers as you can. Find similarities among the characteristics you’re looking for. The more specific you can be about your target audience, the better your chances of succeeding.

  • Consider the popularity of the product

The popularity of your items is one of the most effective methods for identifying your target customers. For example, if you own an online pet business and more than 60% of your sales are cat-related goods, you just discovered some helpful information about your target market.

Analyze your sales data and customer feedback to determine what kind of items are most popular and how you can meet or exceed customer expectations .

  • Analyze site visitors with SEO tools

You may learn a lot about your website’s visitors by using SEO tools. For example, you’ll discover the keywords and phrases people use to find your website. You’ll also receive similar questions that let you know what other people are thinking about the subject. 

An additional benefit of SEO software is the ability to study your competitors. Analyze their website to see which keywords they rank for and which pages get the most visitors.

  • Utilize Customer Data

If you already have clients, you may use their information to identify your target the right audience and gain further insight into your target market. You might utilize a customer relationship management system (CRM) to organize and maintain user data. 

Identifying your target customer is easier when you have a large amount of customer data. This data can be used to find out a lot of different things. Examples include names, email addresses, phone numbers, and many other things.

  • Take a look at your competitors

Check out the store or website of a competitor to find out who they are trying to reach. You’ll get a sense of who your audience is, but you’ll also get a sense of who they’re missing. You may be able to identify a niche market that they are ignoring. You’ll also be able to determine what parts aren’t performing well for them.

Now, it’s time to find out how you can improve it. You may take a look at social media sites. Examine the types of individuals that engage with their postings and the material that get a lot of attention. 

Despite your want to avoid investigating your competitors, keep an eye on how they adapt in the face of these circumstances. Don’t forget that your audience isn’t steady. As the economy, technology, and your organization develop, so will your target audience.

  • Follow social media

The best learning method is observing and listening to what others say online. You can learn much about your audience by looking at their questions on social media and forums. It may tell you about their pain areas, why they need support, and their overall objectives. You may determine your target market based on their requirements rather than their demographics.

  • Establish buyer personas

Making buyer personas or customer profiles is crucial when deciding on your target customer. These profiles include important details about your clients, such as purchasing patterns, age, location, problems, education, income level, way of life, and more. 

After you’ve gathered a few customer profiles, you may understand your customers’ characteristics and how your company might meet their wants. As a result, you may continue to provide relevant information, goods, and services.

The most important step in developing marketing strategies that reach the right people at the right time is identifying your target customer. You may establish your brand strategy and marketing strategy by working hard to identify your target audience. It will serve as a solid foundation upon which you may grow your brand over time.

LEARN ABOUT: Perfect Customer-First Strategy

If you only have one marketer and a lot of potential customers, you shouldn’t feel like you have to focus on all of them simultaneously. You should focus only on one audience at a time to ensure you do everything right.

In this article, we’ve defined a target audience and offered advice on how to identify them. Now, all that’s left to do is implement these tips. Good luck!

At QuestionPro CX, we give you the best tools to track target customers for your organization. Get in touch! We would love to work with you to improve your customers’ experiences.



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How to Write a Market Analysis for a Business Plan

Dan Marticio

Dan Marticio is a freelance writer. He’s written on a broad range of topics from stocks and net worth to productivity hacks. His work has appeared on Fundera and LendingTree.

Robert Beaupre

Robert Beaupre leads the SMB team at NerdWallet. He has covered financial topics as an editor for more than a decade. Before joining NerdWallet, he served as senior editorial manager of QuinStreet's insurance sites and managing editor of Insure.com. In addition, he served as an online media manager for the University of Nevada, Reno.

example of target customers in business plan

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money .

A lot of preparation goes into starting a business before you can open your doors to the public or launch your online store. One of your first steps should be to write a business plan . A business plan will serve as your roadmap when building your business.

Within your business plan, there’s an important section you should pay careful attention to: your market analysis. Your market analysis helps you understand your target market and how you can thrive within it.

Simply put, your market analysis shows that you’ve done your research. It also contributes to your marketing strategy by defining your target customer and researching their buying habits. Overall, a market analysis will yield invaluable data if you have limited knowledge about your market, the market has fierce competition, and if you require a business loan. In this guide, we'll explore how to conduct your own market analysis.

How to conduct a market analysis: A step-by-step guide

In your market analysis, you can expect to cover the following:

Industry outlook

Target market

Market value


Barriers to entry

Let’s dive into an in-depth look into each section:

Step 1: Define your objective

Before you begin your market analysis, it’s important to define your objective for writing a market analysis. Are you writing it for internal purposes or for external purposes?

If you were doing a market analysis for internal purposes, you might be brainstorming new products to launch or adjusting your marketing tactics. An example of an external purpose might be that you need a market analysis to get approved for a business loan .

The comprehensiveness of your market analysis will depend on your objective. If you’re preparing for a new product launch, you might focus more heavily on researching the competition. A market analysis for a loan approval would require heavy data and research into market size and growth, share potential, and pricing.

Step 2: Provide an industry outlook

An industry outlook is a general direction of where your industry is heading. Lenders want to know whether you’re targeting a growing industry or declining industry. For example, if you’re looking to sell VCRs in 2020, it’s unlikely that your business will succeed.

Starting your market analysis with an industry outlook offers a preliminary view of the market and what to expect in your market analysis. When writing this section, you'll want to include:

Market size

Are you chasing big markets or are you targeting very niche markets? If you’re targeting a niche market, are there enough customers to support your business and buy your product?

Product life cycle

If you develop a product, what will its life cycle look like? Lenders want an overview of how your product will come into fruition after it’s developed and launched. In this section, you can discuss your product’s:

Research and development

Projected growth

How do you see your company performing over time? Calculating your year-over-year growth will help you and lenders see how your business has grown thus far. Calculating your projected growth shows how your business will fare in future projected market conditions.

Step 3: Determine your target market

This section of your market analysis is dedicated to your potential customer. Who is your ideal target customer? How can you cater your product to serve them specifically?

Don’t make the mistake of wanting to sell your product to everybody. Your target customer should be specific. For example, if you’re selling mittens, you wouldn’t want to market to warmer climates like Hawaii. You should target customers who live in colder regions. The more nuanced your target market is, the more information you’ll have to inform your business and marketing strategy.

With that in mind, your target market section should include the following points:


This is where you leave nothing to mystery about your ideal customer. You want to know every aspect of your customer so you can best serve them. Dedicate time to researching the following demographics:

Income level

Create a customer persona

Creating a customer persona can help you better understand your customer. It can be easier to market to a person than data on paper. You can give this persona a name, background, and job. Mold this persona into your target customer.

What are your customer’s pain points? How do these pain points influence how they buy products? What matters most to them? Why do they choose one brand over another?

Research and supporting material

Information without data are just claims. To add credibility to your market analysis, you need to include data. Some methods for collecting data include:

Target group surveys

Focus groups

Reading reviews

Feedback surveys

You can also consult resources online. For example, the U.S. Census Bureau can help you find demographics in calculating your market share. The U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. Small Business Administration also offer general data that can help you research your target industry.

Step 4: Calculate market value

You can use either top-down analysis or bottom-up analysis to calculate an estimate of your market value.

A top-down analysis tends to be the easier option of the two. It requires for you to calculate the entire market and then estimate how much of a share you expect your business to get. For example, let’s assume your target market consists of 100,000 people. If you’re optimistic and manage to get 1% of that market, you can expect to make 1,000 sales.

A bottom-up analysis is more data-driven and requires more research. You calculate the individual factors of your business and then estimate how high you can scale them to arrive at a projected market share. Some factors to consider when doing a bottom-up analysis include:

Where products are sold

Who your competition is

The price per unit

How many consumers you expect to reach

The average amount a customer would buy over time

While a bottom-up analysis requires more data than a top-down analysis, you can usually arrive at a more accurate calculation.

Step 5: Get to know your competition

Before you start a business, you need to research the level of competition within your market. Are there certain companies getting the lion’s share of the market? How can you position yourself to stand out from the competition?

There are two types of competitors that you should be aware of: direct competitors and indirect competitors.

Direct competitors are other businesses who sell the same product as you. If you and the company across town both sell apples, you are direct competitors.

An indirect competitor sells a different but similar product to yours. If that company across town sells oranges instead, they are an indirect competitor. Apples and oranges are different but they still target a similar market: people who eat fruits.

Also, here are some questions you want to answer when writing this section of your market analysis:

What are your competitor’s strengths?

What are your competitor’s weaknesses?

How can you cover your competitor’s weaknesses in your own business?

How can you solve the same problems better or differently than your competitors?

How can you leverage technology to better serve your customers?

How big of a threat are your competitors if you open your business?

Step 6: Identify your barriers

Writing a market analysis can help you identify some glaring barriers to starting your business. Researching these barriers will help you avoid any costly legal or business mistakes down the line. Some entry barriers to address in your marketing analysis include:

Technology: How rapid is technology advancing and can it render your product obsolete within the next five years?

Branding: You need to establish your brand identity to stand out in a saturated market.

Cost of entry: Startup costs, like renting a space and hiring employees, are expensive. Also, specialty equipment often comes with hefty price tags. (Consider researching equipment financing to help finance these purchases.)

Location: You need to secure a prime location if you’re opening a physical store.

Competition: A market with fierce competition can be a steep uphill battle (like attempting to go toe-to-toe with Apple or Amazon).

Step 7: Know the regulations

When starting a business, it’s your responsibility to research governmental and state business regulations within your market. Some regulations to keep in mind include (but aren’t limited to):

Employment and labor laws


Environmental regulations

If you’re a newer entrepreneur and this is your first business, this part can be daunting so you might want to consult with a business attorney. A legal professional will help you identify the legal requirements specific to your business. You can also check online legal help sites like LegalZoom or Rocket Lawyer.

Tips when writing your market analysis

We wouldn’t be surprised if you feel overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information needed in a market analysis. Keep in mind, though, this research is key to launching a successful business. You don’t want to cut corners, but here are a few tips to help you out when writing your market analysis:

Use visual aids

Nobody likes 30 pages of nothing but text. Using visual aids can break up those text blocks, making your market analysis more visually appealing. When discussing statistics and metrics, charts and graphs will help you better communicate your data.

Include a summary

If you’ve ever read an article from an academic journal, you’ll notice that writers include an abstract that offers the reader a preview.

Use this same tactic when writing your market analysis. It will prime the reader of your market highlights before they dive into the hard data.

Get to the point

It’s better to keep your market analysis concise than to stuff it with fluff and repetition. You’ll want to present your data, analyze it, and then tie it back into how your business can thrive within your target market.

Revisit your market analysis regularly

Markets are always changing and it's important that your business changes with your target market. Revisiting your market analysis ensures that your business operations align with changing market conditions. The best businesses are the ones that can adapt.

Why should you write a market analysis?

Your market analysis helps you look at factors within your market to determine if it’s a good fit for your business model. A market analysis will help you:

1. Learn how to analyze the market need

Markets are always shifting and it’s a good idea to identify current and projected market conditions. These trends will help you understand the size of your market and whether there are paying customers waiting for you. Doing a market analysis helps you confirm that your target market is a lucrative market.

2. Learn about your customers

The best way to serve your customer is to understand them. A market analysis will examine your customer’s buying habits, pain points, and desires. This information will aid you in developing a business that addresses those points.

3. Get approved for a business loan

Starting a business, especially if it’s your first one, requires startup funding. A good first step is to apply for a business loan with your bank or other financial institution.

A thorough market analysis shows that you’re professional, prepared, and worth the investment from lenders. This preparation inspires confidence within the lender that you can build a business and repay the loan.

4. Beat the competition

Your research will offer valuable insight and certain advantages that the competition might not have. For example, thoroughly understanding your customer’s pain points and desires will help you develop a superior product or service than your competitors. If your business is already up and running, an updated market analysis can upgrade your marketing strategy or help you launch a new product.

Final thoughts

There is a saying that the first step to cutting down a tree is to sharpen an axe. In other words, preparation is the key to success. In business, preparation increases the chances that your business will succeed, even in a competitive market.

The market analysis section of your business plan separates the entrepreneurs who have done their homework from those who haven’t. Now that you’ve learned how to write a market analysis, it’s time for you to sharpen your axe and grow a successful business. And keep in mind, if you need help crafting your business plan, you can always turn to business plan software or a free template to help you stay organized.

This article originally appeared on JustBusiness, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.

On a similar note...

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Blog Marketing What is a Marketing Plan & How to Create One [with Examples]

What is a Marketing Plan & How to Create One [with Examples]

Written by: Sara McGuire Oct 26, 2023

Marketing Plan Venngage

A marketing plan is a blueprint that outlines your strategies to attract and convert your ideal customers as a part of your customer acquisition strategy . It’s a comprehensive document that details your:

  • Target audience:  Who you’re trying to reach
  • Marketing goals:  What you want to achieve
  • Strategies and tactics:  How you’ll reach your goals
  • Budget:  Resources you’ll allocate
  • Metrics:  How you’ll measure success

In this article, I’ll explain everything you need to know about creating a marketing plan . If you need a little extra help, there are professionally designed marketing plan templates that’ll make the process much easier. So, let’s ditch the confusion and get started!

Click to jump ahead:

What is a marketing plan?

How to write a marketing plan .

  • Marketing plan v.s. business plan
  • Types of marketing plans

9 marketing plan examples to inspire your growth strategy

Marketing plan faqs.

A marketing plan is a report that outlines your marketing strategy for your products or services, which could be applicable for the coming year, quarter or month.  

Watch this quick, 13-minute video for more details on what a marketing plan is and how to make one yourself:

Typically, a marketing plan includes:

  • An overview of your business’s marketing and advertising goals
  • A description of your business’s current marketing position
  • A timeline of when tasks within your strategy will be completed
  • Key performance indicators (KPIs) you will be tracking
  • A description of your business’s target market and customer needs
  • A description of how you will measure the performance of the strategy

For example, this marketing plan template provides a high-level overview of the business and competitors before diving deep into specific goals, KPIs and tactics:

Orange Content Marketing Plan Template

Learning how to write a marketing plan forces you to think through the important steps that lead to an effective marketing strategy . And a well-defined plan will help you stay focused on your high-level marketing goals.

With Venngage’s extensive catalog of marketing plan templates , creating your marketing plan isn’t going to be hard or tedious. In fact, Venngage has plenty of helpful communications and design resources for marketers. If you’re ready to get started, sign up for  Venngage for Marketers   now. It’s free to register and start designing.

Venngage for Marketers Page Header

Whether you’re a team trying to set smarter marketing goals, a consultant trying to set your client in the right direction, or a one-person team hustling it out, Venngage for Marketers helps you get things done.

As mentioned above, the scope of your marketing plan varies depending on its purpose or the type of organization it’s for.

For example, you could look for performance marketing agency to create a marketing plan that provides an overview of a company’s entire marketing strategy or simply focus on a specific channel like SEO, social media marketing, content marketing and more, like in this example:

content marketing plan template

A typical outline of a marketing plan includes:

  • Executive summary
  • Goals and objectives
  • User personas
  • Competitor analysis/SWOT analysis
  • Baseline metrics
  • Marketing strategy
  • Tracking guidelines

Below you will see in details how to write each section as well as some examples of how you can design each section in a marketing plan.

Let’s look at how to create a successful marketing plan (click to jump ahead):

  • Write a simple executive summary
  • Set metric-driven marketing goals
  • Outline your user personas
  • Research all of your competitors
  • Set accurate key baselines & metrics
  • Create an actionable marketing strategy
  • Set tracking or reporting guidelines

1. Write a simple executive summary

Starting your marketing plan off on the right foot is important. You want to pull people into your amazing plan for marketing domination. Not bore them to tears.

Creative Marketing Plan Executive Summary

One of the best ways to get people excited to read your marketing plan is with a well-written executive summary. An executive summary introduces readers to your company goals, marketing triumphs, future plans, and other important contextual facts.

Standard Business Proposal Executive Summary

Basically, you can use the Executive Summary as a primer for the rest of your marketing plan.

Include things like:

  • Simple marketing goals
  • High-level metrics
  • Important company milestones
  • Facts about your brand
  • Employee anecdotes
  • Future goals & plans

Try to keep your executive summary rather brief and to the point. You aren’t writing a novel, so try to keep it under three to four paragraphs.

Take a look at the executive summary in the marketing plan example below:

Content Marketing Proposal Executive Summary

The executive summary is only two paragraphs long — short but effective.

The executive summary tells readers about the company’s growth, and how they are about to overtake one of their competitors. But there’s no mention of specific metrics or figures. That will be highlighted in the next section of the marketing plan.

An effective executive summary should have enough information to pique the reader’s interest, but not bog them down with specifics yet. That’s what the rest of your marketing plan is for!

The executive summary also sets the tone for your marketing plan. Think about what tone will fit your brand ? Friendly and humorous? Professional and reliable? Inspiring and visionary?

2. Set metric-driven marketing goals

After you perfect your executive summary, it’s time to outline your marketing goals.

(If you’ve never set data-driven goals like this before, it would be worth reading this growth strategy guide ).

This is one of the most important parts of the entire marketing plan, so be sure to take your time and be as clear as possible. Moreover, optimizing your marketing funnel is key. Employing effective funnel software can simplify operations and provide valuable customer insights. It facilitates lead tracking, conversion rate analysis, and efficient marketing optimization .

As a rule of thumb, be as specific as possible. The folks over at  VoyMedia  advise that you should set goals that impact website traffic, conversions, and customer success — and to use real numbers.

Avoid outlining vague goals like:

  • Get more Twitter followers
  • Write more articles
  • Create more YouTube videos (like educational or Explainer videos )
  • Increase retention rate
  • Decrease bounce rate

Instead, identify  key performance metrics  (KPI) you want to impact and the percentage you want to increase them by.

Take a look at the goals page in the marketing plan example below:

Creative Marketing Plan Goals

They not only identify a specific metric in each of their goals, but they also set a timeline for when they will be increased.

The same vague goals listed earlier become much clearer when specific numbers and timelines are applied to them:

  • Get 100 new Twitter followers per month
  • Write 5 more articles per week
  • Create 10 YouTube videos each year
  • Increase retention rate by 15% by 2020
  • Decrease bounce rate by 5% by Q1
  • Create an online course  and get 1,000 new leads
  • Focus more on local SEO strategies
  • Conduct a monthly social media report to track progress

You can dive even deeper into your marketing goals if you want (generally, the more specific, the better). Here’s a marketing plan example that shows how to outline your growth goals:

Growth Goals Roadmap Template for a Marketing Plan

3. Outline your user personas

Now, this may not seem like the most important part of your marketing plan, but I think it holds a ton of value.

Outlining your user personas is an important part of a marketing plan that should not be overlooked.

You should be asking not just how you can get the most visitors to your business, but how you can get the right visitors.

Who are your ideal customers? What are their goals? What are their biggest problems? How does your business solve customer problems?

Answering these questions will take lots of research, but it’s essential information to get.

Some ways to conduct user research are:

  • Interviewing your users (either in person or on the phone)
  • Conducting focus groups
  • Researching other businesses in the same industry
  • Surveying your audience

Then, you will need to compile your user data into a user persona  guide.

Take a look at how detailed this user persona template is below:

Persona Marketing Report Template

Taking the time to identify specific demographic traits, habits and goals will make it easier for you to cater your marketing plan to them.

Here’s how you can create a user persona guide:

The first thing you should add is a profile picture or icon for each user persona. It can help to put a face to your personas, so they seem more real.

Marketing Persona

Next, list demographic information like:

  • Identifiers
  • Activities/Hobbies

The user persona example above uses sliding scales to identify personality traits like introversion vs. extroversion and thinking vs. feeling. Identifying what type of personality your target users tend to have an influence on the messaging you use in your marketing content.

Meanwhile, this user persona guide identifies specific challenges the user faces each day:

Content Marketing Proposal Audience Personas

But if you don’t want to go into such precise detail, you can stick to basic information, like in this marketing plan example:

Social Media Plan Proposal Template Ideal Customers

Most businesses will have a few different types of target users. That’s why it’s pertinent to identify and create several different user personas . That way, you can better segment your marketing campaigns and set separate goals, if necessary.

Here’s a marketing plan example with a segmented user persona guide:

Mobile App Market Report

The important thing is for your team or client to have a clear picture of who their target user is and how they can appeal to their specific problems.

Start creating robust user personas using Venngage’s user persona guide .

4. Conduct an extensive competitor analysis

Next, on the marketing plan checklist, we have the competitor research section. This section will help you identify who your competitors are, what they’re doing, and how you could carve yourself a place alongside them in your niche — and ideally, surpass them. It’s something you can learn to do with rank tracking software .

Competitor research is also incredibly important if you are starting a blog .

Typically, your competitor research should include:

  • Who their marketing team is
  • Who their leadership team is
  • What their marketing strategy and strategic marketing plan are (this will probably revolve some reverse-engineering)
  • What their sales strategy is (same deal)
  • Social Media strategy (are they using discounting strategies such as coupon marketing to get conversions)
  • Their market cap/financials
  • Their yearly growth (you will probably need to use a marketing tool like Ahrefs to do this)
  • The number of customers they have & their user personas

Also, take as deep a dive as you can into the strategies they use across their:

  • Blog/Content marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • SEO Marketing
  • Video marketing
  • And any other marketing tactics they use

Research their strengths and weaknesses in all parts of their company, and you will find some great opportunities. Bookmark has a great guide to different marketing strategies for small businesses  if you need some more information there.

You can use this simple SWOT analysis worksheet to quickly work through all parts of their strategy as well:

Competitive SWOT Analysis

Click the template above to create a SWOT chart . Customize the template to your liking — no design know-how needed.

Since you have already done all the research beforehand, adding this information to your marketing plan shouldn’t be that hard.

In this marketing plan example, some high-level research is outlined for 3 competing brands:

Content Marketing Proposal Competitive Research

But you could take a deeper dive into different facets of your competitors’ strategies. This marketing plan example analyses a competitor’s content marketing strategy:


It can also be helpful to divide your competitors into Primary and Secondary groups. For example, Apple’s primary competitor may be Dell for computers, but its secondary competitor could be a company that makes tablets.

Your most dangerous competitors may not even be in the same industry as you. Like the CEO of Netflix said, “Sleep is our competition.”

5. Set accurate key baselines & metrics

It’s pretty hard to plan for the future if you don’t know where your business stands right now.

Before we do anything at Venngage, we find the baselines so we can compare future results to something. We do it so much it’s almost like second nature now!

Setting baselines will allow you to more accurately track your progress. You will also be able to better analyze what worked and what didn’t work, so you can build a stronger strategy. It will definitely help them clearly understand your goals and strategy as well.

Here’s a marketing plan example where the baselines are visualized:

Social Media Marketing Proposal Success Metrics

Another way to include baselines in your plan is with a simple chart, like in the marketing plan example below:


Because data can be intimidating to a lot of people, visualizing your data using charts and infographics will help demystify the information.

6. Create an actionable marketing strategy

After pulling all the contextual information and relevant metrics into your marketing plan, it’s time to break down your marketing strategy.

Once again, it’s easier to communicate your information to your team or clients using visuals .

Mind maps are an effective way to show how a strategy with many moving parts ties together. For example, this mind map shows how the four main components of a marketing strategy interact together:

Marketing Plan Mind Map Template

You can also use a flow chart to map out your strategy by objectives:

Action Plan Mind Map

However you choose to visualize your strategy, your team should know exactly what they need to do. This is not the time to keep your cards close to your chest.

Your strategy section may need to take up a few pages to explain, like in the marketing plan example below:


With all of this information, even someone from the development team will understand what the marketing team is working on.

This minimalistic marketing plan example uses color blocks to make the different parts of the strategy easy to scan:


Breaking your strategy down into tasks will make it easier to tackle.

Another important way to visualize your marketing strategy is to create a project roadmap. A project roadmap visualizes the timeline of your product with individual tasks. Our roadmap maker can help you with this.

For example, this project roadmap shows how tasks on both the marketing and web design side run parallel to each other:

Simple Product Roadmap Plan Template

A simple timeline can also be used in your marketing plan:

Strategy Timeline Infographic

Or a mind map, if you want to include a ton of information in a more organized way:

Business Strategy Mindmap Template

Even a simple “Next, Now, Later” chart can help visualize your strategy:

3 Step Product Roadmap Template

7. Set tracking or reporting guidelines

Close your marketing plan with a brief explanation of how you plan to track or measure your results. This will save you a lot of frustration down the line by standardizing how you track results across your team.

Like the other sections of your marketing plan, you can choose how in-depth you want to go. But there need to be some clear guidelines on how to measure the progress and results of your marketing plan.

At the bare minimum, your results tracking guidelines should specify:

  • What you plan to track
  • How you plan to track results
  • How often you plan to measure

But you can more add tracking guidelines to your marketing plan if you see the need to. You may also want to include a template that your team or client can follow,  for  client reporting ,  ensure that the right metrics are being tracked.

Marketing Checklist

The marketing plan example below dedicates a whole page to tracking criteria:

SEO Marketing Proposal Measuring Results

Use a task tracker to track tasks and marketing results, and a checklist maker to note down tasks, important life events, or tracking your daily life.

Similarly, the marketing plan example below talks about tracking content marketing instead:

Social Media Marketing Proposal

Marketing plan vs. marketing strategy

Although often used interchangeably, the terms “marketing plan” and “marketing strategy” do have some differences.

Simply speaking, a marketing strategy presents what the business will do in order to reach a certain goal. A marketing plan outlines the specific daily, weekly, monthly or yearly activities that the marketing strategy calls for. As a business, you can create a marketing proposal for the marketing strategies defined in your company’s marketing plan. There are various marketing proposal examples that you can look at to help with this.

A company’s extended marketing strategy can be like this:

marketing strategy mind map

Notice how it’s more general and doesn’t include the actual activities required to complete each strategy or the timeframe those marketing activities will take place. That kind of information is included in a marketing plan, like this marketing plan template which talks about the content strategy in detail:

Content Marketing Proposal

Marketing plan v.s business plan

While both marketing plans and business plans are crucial documents for businesses, they serve distinct purposes and have different scopes. Here’s a breakdown of the key differences:

Business plan is a comprehensive document that outlines all aspects of your business, including:

  • Mission and vision
  • Products or services
  • Target market
  • Competition
  • Management team
  • Financial projections
  • Marketing strategy (including a marketing plan)
  • Operations plan

Marketing plan on the other hand, dives deep into the specific strategies and tactics related to your marketing efforts. It expands on the marketing section of a business plan by detailing:

  • Specific marketing goals (e.g., brand awareness, lead generation, sales)
  • Target audience analysis (detailed understanding of their needs and behaviors)
  • Product:  Features, benefits, positioning
  • Price:  Pricing strategy, discounts
  • Place:  Distribution channels (online, offline)
  • Promotion:  Advertising, social media, content marketing, public relations
  • Budget allocation for different marketing activities
  • Metrics and measurement to track progress and success

In short, business plans paint the entire business picture, while marketing plans zoom in on the specific strategies used to reach your target audience and achieve marketing goals.

Types of marketing plans that can transform your business strategy

Let’s take a look at several types of marketing plans you can create, along with specific examples for each.

1. General marketing strategic plan / Annual marketing plan

This is a good example of a marketing plan that covers the overarching annual marketing strategy for a company:

marketing strategy template marketing plan

Another good example would be this Starbucks marketing plan:

Starbucks marketing plan example

This one-page marketing plan example from coffee chain Starbucks has everything at a glance. The bold headers and subheadings make it easier to segment the sections so readers can focus on the area most relevant to them.

What we like about this example is how much it covers. From the ideal buyer persona to actional activities, as well as positioning and metrics, this marketing plan has it all.

Another marketing plan example that caught our eye is this one from Cengage. Although a bit text-heavy and traditional, it explains the various sections well. The clean layout makes this plan easy to read and absorb.

Cengage marketing plan example

The last marketing plan example we would like to feature in this section is this one from Lush cosmetics.

It is a long one but it’s also very detailed. The plan outlines numerous areas, including the company mission, SWOT analysis , brand positioning, packaging, geographical criteria, and much more.

Lush marketing plan

2. Content marketing plan

A content marketing plan highlights different strategies , campaigns or tactics you can use for your content to help your business reach its goals.

This one-page marketing plan example from Contently outlines a content strategy and workflow using simple colors and blocks. The bullet points detail more information but this plan can easily be understood at a glance, which makes it so effective.

contently marketing plan

For a more detailed content marketing plan example, take a look at this template which features an editorial calendar you can share with the whole team:

nonprofit content marketing plan

3. SEO marketing plan

Your SEO marketing plan highlights what you plan to do for your SEO marketing strategy . This could include tactics for website on-page optimization , off-page optimization using AI SEO , and link building using an SEO PowerSuite backlink API for quick backlink profile checks.

This SEO marketing plan example discusses in detail the target audience of the business and the SEO plan laid out in different stages:

SEO marketing plan example

4. Social media marketing plan

Your social media marketing plan presents what you’ll do to reach your marketing goal through social media. This could include tactics specific to each social media channel that you own, recommendations on developing a new channel, specific campaigns you want to run, and so on, like how B2B channels use Linkedin to generate leads with automation tools and expand their customer base; or like making use of Twitter walls that could display live Twitter feeds from Twitter in real-time on digital screens.

For B2C brands, you can target Facebook and Instagram. Gain Instagram likes to build trust for your brand’s profile and post engaging content on both platforms

Edit this social media marketing plan example easily with Venngage’s drag-and-drop editor:

social media marketing plan example

5. Demand generation marketing plan

This could cover your paid marketing strategy (which can include search ads, paid social media ads, traditional advertisements, etc.), email marketing strategy and more. Here’s an example:

promotional marketing plan

1. Free marketing plan template

Here’s a free nonprofit marketing plan example that is ideal for organizations with a comprehensive vision to share. It’s a simple plan that is incredibly effective. Not only does the plan outline the core values of the company, it also shares the ideal buyer persona.

example of target customers in business plan

Note how the branding is consistent throughout this example so there is no doubt which company is presenting this plan. The content plan is an added incentive for anyone viewing the document to go ahead and give the team the green light.

2. Pastel social media marketing campaign template

Two-page marketing plan samples aren’t very common, but this free template proves how effective they are. There’s a dedicated section for business goals as well as for project planning .

Pastel Social Media Marketing Plan Template

The milestones for the marketing campaign are clearly laid out, which is a great way to show how organized this business strategy is.

3. Small business marketing strategy template

This marketing plan template is perfect for small businesses who set out to develop an overarching marketing strategy for the whole year:

Notice how this aligns pretty well with the marketing plan outline we discussed in previous sections.

In terms of specific tactics for the company’s marketing strategy, the template only discusses SEO strategy, but you can certainly expand on that section to discuss any other strategies — such as link building , that you would like to build out a complete marketing plan for.

4. Orange simple marketing proposal template

Marketing plans, like the sample below, are a great way to highlight what your business strategy and the proposal you wan to put forward to win potential customers.

Orange Simple Marketing Proposal Template

5. One-page marketing fact sheet template

This one-page marketing plan example is great for showcasing marketing efforts in a persuasive presentation or to print out for an in-person meeting.

Nonprofit Healthcare Company Fact Sheet Template

Note how the fact sheet breaks down the marketing budget as well as the key metrics for the organization. You can win over clients and partners with a plan like this.

6. Light company business fact sheet template

This one-page sample marketing plan clearly outlines the marketing objectives for the organization. It’s a simple but effective way to share a large amount of information in a short amount of time.

Light Company Business Fact Sheet Template

What really works with this example is that includes a mission statement, key contact information alongside all the key metrics.

7. Marketing media press kit template

This press kit marketing plan template is bright and unmistakable as belonging to the Cloud Nine marketing agency . The way the brand colors are used also helps diversify the layouts for each page, making the plan easier to read.

Marketing Media Press Kit Template

We like the way the marketing department has outlined the important facts about the organization. The bold and large numbers draw the eye and look impressive.

8. Professional marketing proposal template

Start your marketing campaign on a promising note with this marketing plan template. It’s short, sharp and to the point. The table of contents sets out the agenda, and there’s a page for the company overview and mission statement.

Professional Marketing Proposal Template

9. Social media marketing proposal template

A complete marketing plan example, like the one below, not only breaks down the business goals to be achieved but a whole lot more. Note how the terms and conditions and payment schedule are included, which makes this one of the most comprehensive marketing plans on our list.

Checkered Social Media Marketing Proposal Template

What should marketing plans include?

Marketing plans should include:

  • A detailed analysis of the target market and customer segments.
  • Clear and achievable marketing objectives and goals.
  • Strategies and tactics for product promotion and distribution.
  • Budget allocation for various marketing activities.
  • Timelines and milestones for the implementation of marketing strategies.
  • Evaluation metrics and methods for tracking the success of the marketing plan.

What is an executive summary in a marketing plan and what is its main goal?

An executive summary in a marketing plan is a brief overview of the entire document, summarizing the key points, goals, and strategies. Its main goal is to provide readers with a quick understanding of the plan’s purpose and to entice them to read further.

What are the results when a marketing plan is effective?

When a marketing plan is effective, businesses can experience increased brand visibility, higher customer engagement , improved sales and revenue, and strengthened customer loyalty.

What is the first section of a marketing plan?

The first section of a marketing plan is typically the “Executive Summary,” which provides a concise overview of the entire plan, including the business’s goals and the strategies to achieve them.

Now that you have the basics for designing your own marketing plan, it’s time to get started:

More marketing design guides and templates:

  • Marketing Infographics: The Definitive Guide [Includes Infographic Templates]
  • 20+ Business Pitch Deck Templates to Win New Clients and Investors
  • 20+ White Paper Examples [Design Guide + White Paper Templates]
  • The Evolution of Marketing [Timeline Infographic]

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Customer Profile Template And Examples

Katherine Haan

Updated: May 28, 2024, 5:49pm

Customer Profile Template And Examples

Table of Contents

What is a customer profile, why customer profiles are important, how to create a customer profile in 4 steps, b2b customer profile examples, b2c customer profile example, frequently asked questions (faqs).

Compiling a customer profile can help you understand your target market more accurately, and should be updated on a regular basis. By gathering information on your ideal customers, you can tailor your marketing efforts and deliver more personalized experiences. We’ll give you a comprehensive guide to customer profiles, including templates and examples for both B2B and B2C businesses. Learn why customer profiles are important, how to create them, and find inspiration for your own profiles.

Download template here

A customer profile is a detailed description of your ideal customer. It provides demographic information, such as age, gender, income, education and location, as well as customer behaviors and interests. By creating a customer profile, businesses can better understand their target audience and tailor their marketing efforts to meet their needs.

Demographic Information

Demographic information includes details about a customer’s age, gender, income, education and location. This information can help businesses understand who their target audience is and what their needs may be.

Customer Behaviors and Interests

In addition to demographic information, a customer profile should also include details about customer behaviors and interests. This can include information about their shopping habits, social media use, hobbies and other interests. Understanding these behaviors and interests can help businesses better target their marketing efforts and create more effective campaigns.

Knowing your customers is key to any business’s success. Customer profiles allow you to gain insights into the needs, preferences and behaviors of your target audience. Here are some reasons why customer profiles are important:

Better Targeting

Customer profiles enable you to target your marketing and sales efforts more effectively. By understanding your customers’ needs, you can tailor your messages and offers to resonate with them and increase the chances of conversion. When you know what a customer likes, you can create products best aligned with their needs and desires.

Improved Customer Service

Customer profiles help you understand your customers’ pain points, allowing you to provide better customer service. You can address their concerns and issues proactively and enhance their overall experience with your brand.

Higher Retention

When you understand your customers’ needs, you can create products and services that meet those needs, increasing the likelihood of customer retention. You can also use customer profiles to identify customers who are at risk of churn and take steps to retain them.

Data-Driven Decisions

Customer profiles provide you with data that can inform your business decisions. By analyzing customer behavior and preferences, you can identify trends and make data-driven decisions about product development, marketing strategy and customer service.

Competitive Advantage

Customer profiles give you a competitive advantage by enabling you to provide a more personalized and relevant customer experience. This can help you stand out from your competitors and build customer loyalty.

Crafting a customer profile is vital for a successful marketing approach. Knowing exactly what a customer wants and needs can help you tailor your products, marketing and services. You can have multiple customer profiles—many businesses choose to have one for each sector—and you should update these regularly, especially as market conditions and customer life cycles change. These steps will help you set up a customer profile.

Collect Customer Data

Analyze customer data, identify customer segments, share customer data.

Having customer profiles is crucial for both B2B and B2C. Learn about your ideal customer, so you can create marketing and sales campaigns that work for them. Use this B2B customer profile template to craft your own, and consider adding information you gather below.

Company Information

Include details such as company size, industry, location and annual revenue.

Company: Madison Corporation

Company Size: Large corporation with 500-1,000 employees

Industry: Technology and software

Location: Madison, WI

Annual Revenue: $1 billion

Madison Corporation is a large technology and software company based in Madison, WI. The company is committed to supporting local businesses and the Wisconsin economy by sourcing materials and services from local vendors. They are interested in purchasing Wisconsin-made products for employee gifts and corporate events.

Decision-Makers and Influencers

Identify the individuals who will be involved in the purchasing process, including decision-makers and influencers.


Mary Johnson, Owner of Johnson’s Gifts – Mary is responsible for making purchasing decisions for her gift shop. She is interested in carrying Wisconsin-made products that are unique and of high-quality, and that resonate with her customer base.

John Peterson, CEO of Madison Corporation – John has the final say on all purchasing decisions for Madison Corporation. He is interested in purchasing Wisconsin-made products for employee gifts and corporate events, and is looking for products that align with the company’s values and brand.


Sarah Smith, Marketing Manager of Wisconsin Tourism Board – Sarah is responsible for promoting Wisconsin tourism and is always on the lookout for new and exciting Wisconsin-made products to feature in her marketing campaigns. She has a strong influence over tourists and visitors to the state.

Tom Jackson, Local Business Advocate – Tom is a local business advocate who works to promote local businesses and the Wisconsin economy. He has a strong influence over purchasing decisions made by local businesses and corporations, and is interested in promoting Wisconsin-made products to his network.

Pain Points and Challenges

Understand the pain points and challenges your target customers face, and how your product or service can address these issues.

Difficulty finding authentic and high-quality Wisconsin-made products that are not mass-produced or sold at big-box stores.

Navigating the crowded marketplace of Wisconsin-themed souvenirs and gifts, and finding products that are unique and showcase the state’s culture and heritage.

The desire to support local businesses and the Wisconsin economy, but not knowing where to find or how to identify Wisconsin-made products.

How Stapleton Badger Co.’s products can address these issues:

By focusing on producing handcrafted and unique Wisconsin-made products, Stapleton Badger Co. can provide customers with authentic and high-quality products that cannot be found at big-box stores.

Stapleton Badger Co. can differentiate itself from the crowded marketplace of Wisconsin-themed souvenirs and gifts by offering products that are both unique and of high-quality, and that showcase the state’s culture and heritage in a way that resonates with customers.

By marketing itself as a Wisconsin-based business that supports the local economy, Stapleton Badger Co. can appeal to customers who want to support local businesses and the Wisconsin economy. This messaging can be reinforced through the use of Wisconsin-sourced materials and a transparent supply chain that emphasizes the company’s commitment to local sourcing and manufacturing.

Goals and Objectives

Analyze what your customers anticipate from your product or service and how it can bring them closer to their goals.

Supporting the local economy: Madison Corporation is committed to supporting local businesses and the Wisconsin economy. By purchasing Wisconsin-made products from Stapleton Badger Co., the company can help support local artisans and manufacturers, and create jobs in Wisconsin.

Gifting high-quality and unique products: Madison Corporation is interested in purchasing Wisconsin-made products for employee gifts and corporate events. By purchasing products from Stapleton Badger Co., the company can provide employees and clients with high-quality and unique gifts that showcase Wisconsin’s culture and heritage.

Building a positive reputation: Madison Corporation values its reputation as a responsible and sustainable business. By purchasing Wisconsin-made products from Stapleton Badger Co., the company can demonstrate its commitment to supporting local businesses and the Wisconsin economy, and build a positive reputation with customers and stakeholders.

Purchasing Habits and Criteria

Find out how your target customers make purchasing decisions and what criteria they use to evaluate potential vendors.

Researching products and vendors online: Customers are increasingly using the internet to research products and vendors before making a purchase. They may look for reviews, ratings and social media presence to assess the credibility and quality of a vendor.

Shopping locally: Customers who prioritize supporting local businesses may prefer to shop at local stores or markets to find Wisconsin-made products. They may also look for locally sourced materials and transparent supply chains when evaluating vendors.

Attending local events and festivals: Customers may attend local events and festivals to discover new vendors and products. These events may also provide an opportunity for customers to meet the makers and learn more about the production process.

Quality and authenticity of products: Customers value high-quality and authentic Wisconsin-made products that are unique and well-crafted. They may evaluate vendors based on the quality of their products, materials used and the production process.

Reputation and credibility of vendor: Customers may evaluate vendors based on their reputation and credibility within the community. They may look for vendors who have positive reviews, strong social media presence, and a transparent supply chain.

Price and value for money: Customers may compare prices and value for money when evaluating vendors. They may be willing to pay a premium for high-quality and unique Wisconsin-made products, but also expect fair and transparent pricing.

Marketing and Sales Strategy

Outline a strategy to advertise and distribute your product or service to your intended customers, based on the information you have gathered about their characteristics and preferences.

Research and identify Madison Corporation’s needs and preferences: Before reaching out to Madison Corporation, Stapleton Badger Co. should research and identify the company’s needs and preferences for Wisconsin-made products. This can involve analyzing the company’s brand and values, and understanding the types of products that are typically used for employee gifts and corporate events.

Develop a customized product offering: Based on Madison Corporation’s needs and preferences, Stapleton Badger Co. should develop a customized product offering that aligns with the company’s brand and values. This can involve creating unique and high-quality products that showcase Wisconsin’s culture and heritage, such as custom-made home decor, accessories, and gifts.

Establish a sales pitch: Stapleton Badger Co. should establish a sales pitch that emphasizes the quality, authenticity, and uniqueness of its products, and how they can benefit Madison Corporation’s goals and objectives. This can include providing transparent information about the sourcing and production process, highlighting the positive impact on the local economy, and showcasing the products’ durability and craftsmanship.

Reach out to decision-makers and influencers: Stapleton Badger Co. should reach out to decision-makers and influencers at Madison Corporation, such as John Peterson, the CEO, and Tom Jackson, the local business advocate. This can involve sending customized emails or direct mail that showcase the products and explain their benefits, or arranging face-to-face meetings or calls to discuss the product offering and establish a long-term partnership.

Provide excellent customer service: Stapleton Badger Co. should prioritize providing excellent customer service to Madison Corporation, including timely and reliable deliveries, transparent communication, and flexible payment options. This can help establish trust and reliability and build a strong relationship between the two companies.

Knowing your target audience is key to making marketing campaigns that connect with people who might buy from you. In this section, we’ll provide an example of a B2C customer profile to help you get started, as well as information to consider when customizing your template.

When creating a B2C customer profile, start with demographic information, such as age, gender, income and location. This’ll help you work out who your customers are and what they want.


Gender: Male and Female

Income: $50,000-$150,000 per year

Location: Primarily located in the Midwest region of the United States, with a focus on Wisconsin residents and visitors.

Stapleton Badger Co.’s target B2C customers are typically middle-aged and middle-class individuals who are interested in supporting local businesses and the Wisconsin economy. They may be homeowners, parents, or working professionals, and may have a strong interest in Wisconsin culture, heritage, and history.

Their income level suggests that they have disposable income to spend on high-quality and unique products. They may be willing to pay a premium for Wisconsin-made products that are handcrafted and authentic.

In addition to demographic information, consider your customers’ behaviors and interests. What motivates them to make purchases? What are their pain points and challenges? What types of media do they consume? Understanding these factors can help you tailor your marketing efforts to better reach and engage your target audience.

Interest in supporting local businesses: Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may be motivated by a desire to support local businesses and the Wisconsin economy. They may be more likely to purchase products that are locally-sourced and handcrafted, and that support local artisans and manufacturers.

Appreciation for Wisconsin culture and heritage: Many of Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may have a strong appreciation for Wisconsin’s culture and heritage, and may be interested in purchasing products that showcase the state’s unique history, traditions, and natural beauty.

Desire for high-quality and unique products: Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may value high-quality and unique products that stand out from mass-produced and generic items. They may be willing to pay a premium for products that are well-crafted, authentic, and distinctive.

Active on social media: Many of Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may be active on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. They may use these platforms to discover new products and brands, and to share their experiences and recommendations with friends and family.

Psychographic Information

Consider psychographic information when creating a B2C customer profile. This includes personality traits, values and attitudes. Know what your audience wants and needs, then create messages that they’ll respond to and build loyalty to your brand.

Environmental and social consciousness: Many of Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may value environmental sustainability and social responsibility. They may be more likely to purchase products that are eco-friendly, locally sourced, and support local communities and artisans.

Appreciation for craftsmanship and authenticity: Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may appreciate the time, skill, and attention to detail that goes into handcrafted products. They may be more likely to purchase products that showcase the unique skills and techniques of local artisans, and that offer a sense of authenticity and heritage.

Nostalgia and sentimentality: Many of Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may have a sense of nostalgia and sentimentality for Wisconsin’s culture and heritage. They may be interested in purchasing products that evoke memories of childhood, family traditions, or experiences, and that help them feel connected to their roots.

Appreciation for quality and durability: Stapleton Badger Co.’s B2C customers may value high-quality and durable products that can withstand the test of time. They may be more likely to purchase products that are well made, with attention to detail and quality materials, and that offer good value for the price.

Bottom Line

Building a customer profile is a helpful resource for any company seeking to engage with its target customer. Acknowledging the demographic, behavioral and interest-based details of your customer base can result in the development of more productive marketing and sales efforts. Begin developing your own customer profiles by using the provided templates and examples.

How do I gather customer data for my profile?

You can gather customer data through surveys, customer feedback and analyzing customer behavior on your website and social media.

Can I have multiple customer profiles for different customer segments?

Yes, it’s common for businesses to have multiple customer profiles for different customer segments.

What are some common mistakes to avoid when creating a customer profile?

One common mistake is relying too heavily on assumptions instead of collecting and analyzing data. Another mistake is not regularly updating your customer profile as your target audience evolves.

How do I use a customer profile to improve marketing efforts?

When you’re sure of who your ideal customer is, you can tailor your messaging, content and offers to fit their desires and interests. This can lead to higher conversion rates and improved ROI on your marketing efforts.

What tools or resources are available to help create a customer profile?

There are many customer profiling tools available, ranging from free templates and worksheets to paid software solutions that help collect and analyze customer data. Some popular options include HubSpot , UpLead and ZoomInfo .

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B2B Marketing In 2024: The Ultimate Guide

B2B Marketing In 2024: The Ultimate Guide

Laura Hennigan

Katherine Haan is a small business owner with nearly two decades of experience helping other business owners increase their incomes.

What Is a Target Market (And How to Find Yours)

The better you understand your target market, the more you’ll be able to focus your ads and reach the audience most likely to convert into customers.

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Table of Contents

Your target market sets the tone for your entire marketing strategy — from how you develop and name your products or services right through to the marketing channels you use to promote them.

Here’s a hint before we dig in: Your target market is not “everyone” ( unless you’re Google ). Your task in defining your target market is to identify and understand a smaller, relevant niche so you can dominate it. It’s all about narrowing your focus while expanding your reach.

In this guide, we’ll help you learn who’s already interacting with your business and your competitors, then use that information to develop a clear target market as you build your brand .

Bonus: Get the free template to easily craft a detailed profile of your ideal customer and/or target audience.

What is a target market?

A target market is the specific group of people you want to reach with your marketing message . They are the people who are most likely to buy your products or services, and they are united by some common characteristics, like demographics and behaviors.

The more clearly you define your target market, the better you can understand how and where to reach your ideal potential customers. You can start with broad categories like millennials or single dads, but you need to get much more detailed than that to achieve the best possible conversion rates.

Don’t be afraid to get highly specific. This is all about targeting your marketing efforts effectively, not stopping people from buying your product.

People who are not included in your targeted marketing can still buy from you—they’re just not your top focus when crafting your marketing strategy. You can’t target everyone, but you can sell to everyone.

Your target market should be based on research, not a gut feeling . You need to go after the people who really want to buy from you, even if they’re not the customers you originally set out to reach.

What is target market segmentation?

Target market segmentation is the process of dividing your target market into smaller, more specific groups. It allows you to create a more relevant marketing message for each group.

Remember — you can’t be all things to all people. But you can be different things to different groups of people.

For example, as a vegetarian, I’ve eaten plenty of Impossible Burgers. I’m definitely a target customer. But vegetarians are a surprisingly small target market segment for Impossible Foods: only 10% of their customer base.

That’s why Impossible Foods’ first national advertising campaign was definitely not targeted at me:


The target market segment for this ad campaign was “meat eaters who haven’t yet tried Impossible products.”

Vegetarians and meat eaters have different reasons for eating plant-based burgers and want different things from the experience. Target market segmentation ensures the company reaches the right audience with the right message.

How to define your target market

Step 1. compile data on your current customers.

A great first step in figuring out who most wants to buy from you is to identify who is already using your products or services. Once you understand the defining characteristics of your existing customer base, you can go after more people like that.

Depending on how someone connects with your business, you might have only a little information about them, or a lot.

This doesn’t mean you should add a lot of questions to your order or opt-in process just for audience research purposes — this can annoy customers and result in abandoned shopping carts.

But do be sure to use the information you naturally acquire to understand trends and averages .

Your CRM is a goldmine here. UTM parameters combined with Google Analytics can also provide useful information about your customers.

Some data points you might want to consider are:

  • Age: You don’t need to get too specific here. It won’t likely make a difference whether your average customer is 24 or 27. But knowing which decade of life your customers are in can be very useful.
  • Location (and time zone): Where in the world do your existing customers live? In addition to understanding which geographic areas to target, this helps you figure out what hours are most important for your customer service and sales reps to be online, and what time you should schedule your social ads and posts to ensure best visibility.
  • Language: Don’t assume your customers speak the same language you do. And don’t assume they speak the dominant language of their (or your) current physical location.
  • Spending power and patterns: How much money do your current customers have to spend? How do they approach purchases in your price category?
  • Interests: What do your customers like to do, besides using your products or services? What TV shows do they watch? What other businesses do they interact with?
  • Challenges: What pain points are your customers facing? Do you understand how your product or service helps them address those challenges?
  • Stage of life: Are your customers likely to be college students? New parents? Parents of teens? Retirees?

If you’re selling B2B products, your categories will look a little different. You might want to collect information about the size of businesses that buy from you, and information about the titles of the people who tend to make the buying decisions. Are you marketing to the CEO? The CTO? The social marketing manager?

Step 2. Incorporate social data

Social media analytics can be a great way of filling out the picture of your target market. They help you understand who’s interacting with your social accounts, even if those people are not yet customers.

These people are interested in your brand. Social analytics can provide a lot of information that might help you understand why. You’ll also learn about potential market segments you may not have thought to target before.

You can also use social listening to help identify the people who are talking about you and your product on social media, even if they don’t follow you.

If you want to reach your target market with social ads, lookalike audiences are an easy way to reach more people who share characteristics with your best customers.

Step 3. Check out the competition

Now that you know who’s already interacting with your business and buying your products or services, it’s time to see who’s engaging with the competition.

Knowing what your competitors are up to can help you answer some key questions:

  • Are your competitors going after the same target market segments as you are?
  • Are they reaching segments you hadn’t thought to consider?
  • How are they positioning themselves?

Our guide on how to do competitor research on social media walks you through the best ways to use social tools to gather competitor insights.

You won’t be able to get detailed audience information about the people interacting with your competitors, but you’ll be able to get a general sense of the approach they’re taking and whether it’s allowing them to create engagement online.

This analysis will help you understand which markets competitors are targeting and whether their efforts appear to be effective for those segments.

Step 4. Clarify the value of your product or service

This comes down to the key distinction all marketers must understand between features and benefits. You can list the features of your product all day long, but no one will be convinced to buy from you unless you can explain the benefits .

Features are what your product is or does. The benefits are the results. How does your product make someone’s life easier, or better, or just more interesting?

If you don’t already have a clear list of the benefits of your product, it’s time to start brainstorming now. As you create your benefit statements, you’ll also by default be stating some basic information about your target audience.

For example, if your service helps people find someone to look after their pets while they’re away, you can be pretty confident that your market will have two main segments: (1) pet owners and (2) existing or potential pet-sitters.

If you’re not sure exactly how customers benefit from using your products, why not ask them in a survey, or even a social media poll ?

You might find that people use your products or services for purposes you haven’t even thought of. That might, in turn, change how you perceive your target market for future sales.

Step 5. Create a target market statement

Now it’s time to boil everything you’ve discovered so far into one simple statement that defines your target market. This is actually the first step in creating a brand positioning statement , but that’s a project for another day. For now, let’s stick to creating a statement that clearly defines your target market.

For example, here’s Zipcar’s brand positioning statement, as cited in the classic marketing text Kellogg on Marketing . We’re interested in the first part of the statement, which defines the target market:

“To urban-dwelling, educated, techno-savvy consumers who worry about the environment that future generations will inherit, Zipcar is the car-sharing service that lets you save money and reduce your carbon footprint, making you feel you’ve made a smart, responsible choice that demonstrates your commitment to protecting the environment.”

Zipcar is not targeting all residents of a particular city. They’re not even targeting all the people in a given city who don’t own a car. They’re specifically targeting people who:

  • live in an urban area
  • have a certain degree of education
  • are comfortable with technology
  • are concerned about the environment

These are all interests and behaviors that Zipcar can specifically target using social content and social ads .

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Zipcar (@zipcar)

They also help to guide the company’s overall approach to its service, as evidenced by the rest of the positioning statement.

When crafting your target market statement, try to incorporate the most important demographic and behavior characteristics you’ve identified. For example:

Our target market is [gender(s)] aged [age range], who live in [place or type of place], and like to [activity].

Don’t feel like you need to stick to these particular identifiers. Maybe gender is irrelevant for your market, but you have three or four key behaviors to incorporate in your statement.

If you offer multiple products or services, you might need to create a target market statement for each market segment. In this case, it’s useful to define buyer personas .

Target market examples

Nike target market.

Despite its current market domination, Nike actually provides a great example of what can go wrong when you try to target too general of an audience.

Nike started out as a running shoe company. In the 1980s, they tried to expand their target market beyond runners to include anyone who wanted comfortable shoes. They launched a line of casual shoes, and it flopped.

Here’s the thing: Non-runners were already buying Nike shoes to walk to work, or for other casual purposes. Nike spotted this as an opportunity to expand. Instead, they diluted their brand promise, and the company actually started losing money.

The lesson, according to company founder Phil Knight?

“Ultimately, we determined that we wanted Nike to be the world’s best sports and fitness company and the Nike brand to represent sports and fitness activities. Once you say that, you have focus.”

While Nike would certainly not stop casual users from buying its shoes, the company refocused everything from product development to marketing on its target market: athletes of all levels, from pro to beer league.

In fact, understanding the importance of focus led Nike into a highly effective strategy of target market segmentation. The brand has multiple target markets for its various product lines.

On social, that means they use multiple accounts to reach their different target market groups. No one account tries to be all things to all customers.

The post below from Nike’s general Instagram account targets the segment of their audience interested in fashion and lifestyle products.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Nike Basketball (@nikebasketball)

But the company also has channels dedicated to specific sports. Here’s an example of the content they create for runners:

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Nike Running (@nikerunning)

And that means … the brand has been able to return to marketing its products specifically for casual wear. It just reaches the casual target market through different channels than it uses for its athletic markets. It’s a different target market segment, and a different marketing message

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Nike Sportswear (@nikesportswear)

Like Nike, you might have one target market, or many, depending on the size of your brand. Remember that you can only speak effectively to one target market segment at a time.

Takasa target market

Takasa is a Canadian retail homewares company that specializes in organic, fair trade bedding and bath linens.

Here’s their target market as defined by founders Ruby and Kuljit Rakhra:

“ Our target market is the LOHAS segment, which means Family Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability. This group of people is already living, or striving to live, a green lifestyle … We know our target demo is very conscious about what their families consume, as well as the impact this consumption has on the environment.”

In their social content, they clearly identify the product features most important to their target market: organic materials and fair labor practices.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Organic + Fairtrade Home Goods (@takasa.co)

The City of Port Alberni’s target market

Why does a city need a target market? In Port Alberni’s case, the city is working to “attract investment, business opportunities and new residents.” To that end, they launched a rebranding and marketing campaign.

And a marketing campaign, of course, needs a target market. Here’s how the city defined it:

“ Our target market is young people and young families 25 to 45 years of age who are entrepreneurial-minded, family oriented, adventurous, enjoy an active lifestyle, desire an opportunity to contribute to growth, well-educated and skilled professionals or tradespeople.”

In their social content, they highlight recreational opportunities aimed at those active and adventurous young families, even using the handle @PlayinPA.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by City of Port Alberni (@playinpa)

White House Black Market target market

White House Black Market is a women’s fashion brand. Here’s how they describe their target customer on their website :

“Our customer … is strong yet subtle, modern yet timeless, hard-working yet easy-going.”

That’s a fine description when talking directly to customers. But the marketing department needs a target market definition with a few more specifics. Here’s the detailed target market as described by the company’s former president:

“ Our target market is women [with a] median age of about 45 … at a stage in her life where she’s very busy, primarily a working woman. She’s probably got one or two kids left at home [or] … her children may be out of the house and on their way to college.”

With their hashtag #WHBMPowerhouse, they focus on this key demographic of women in their 40s with busy home lives and careers.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by White House Black Market (@whbm)

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Christina Newberry is an award-winning writer and editor whose greatest passions include food, travel, urban gardening, and the Oxford comma—not necessarily in that order.

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What is a target market and how to define yours

  • Rebecca Strehlow
  • Dec 7, 2023
  • 11 min read

target market

One of the first steps in starting a business is determining your target market. This step alone can be the basis for what products you create, how you brand your business and ultimately who you market to.

With that in mind, you’ll need to develop assets that resonate with your target market. Start by creating a business website that represents your business and uses language and visuals relatable to your audience. Consider what niche you can fit into and what separates your business from the competition. From there you can create messaging, branding and advertising designed for your target market and convert more leads into customers.

Keep reading to learn more about defining your target market and gain expert tips on how to implement this targeting throughout your business strategy.

What is a target market?

Your target market is your product’s primary consumer. Once you know who this is, you can tailor your branding and marketing efforts toward them.

A target market can be composed of a broad group, such as married men over 40 in the US, or it can be quite narrow, such as urban, health-conscious, vegetarian women in Texas. Your market will depend on the particular consumer needs your product addresses.

The three key aspects of a target market include:

Demographics: Age, gender, income, education or employment status.

Geographics: Primary location of your market.

Personality traits: What they like and dislike, as well as where they shop and their favorite brands.

To pinpoint your target market, you’ll need to analyze data about your product niche, your customers and your competitors. You'll also need to understand more about the specific types of target markets in more detail.

What are the types of target markets?

In general there are several ways business owners can categorize target markets. For the most part target markets are divided into the following four main types: demographic, geographic, psychographic, and behavioral.


This type of target market is defined by a number of demographic variables such as age, gender, income, education, and family size. Companies might target specific demographic groups based on their buying habits and purchasing power.

Geographic target markets are defined, as the name suggests, by geographic variables such as region, state, city and population density.


Psychographic variables such as lifestyle, values, personality, and social class make up the definition of this target market.

This type of target market is defined by consumer behavior, such as the benefits sought, usage rate, and customer loyalty.

It's important to note that a business may choose to target one or multiple types of target markets, depending on their specific business objectives and marketing strategies.

Why are target markets important?

Understanding your target market is a crucial aspect of developing a successful business. Below we explore the main reasons why understanding your target market is so important in order to ensure a profitable business.

Better customer segmentation : Understanding your target market allows you to segment your customers more effectively, which in turn helps you tailor your marketing messages and products to meet their specific needs and preferences.

Increased focus and efficiency: Focusing on a specific target market allows you to be more efficient with marketing resources while avoiding wasting time and money on efforts that are not likely to reach or resonate with your target audience.

Improved brand reputation: Understanding your target market can help you establish and maintain a positive brand reputation by allowing you to align your brand with the values and interests of your market.

Increased customer loyalty : By understanding your target market and delivering products and services that meet their needs and expectations, you will foster a loyal customer base that is more likely to recommend your brand to others.

Better decision making: Understanding your target market provides valuable insights that can inform important business decisions, such as product development, pricing strategies and distribution channels for marketing efforts.

Target market vs. target audience?

Often used interchangeably, target market and target audience are not the same thing. Your target market is the end consumer while your target audience is to whom your company advertises. While your target market might fall into your target audience, who you advertise to may not, in the end, be the one who consumes the product.

To clarify, let’s look at an example: Kids toys, for example, have a very clear target market: children. In addition, toys are often marketed toward children who identify with a specific gender category. Nevertheless, kids don’t purchase their toys, their parents do. So toy companies must focus their advertising strategies on parents (the target audience) to sell toys for their kids (the target market).

For example, Generation Alpha , kids born between 2010 and 2025 with millennial parents, play with much different toys than their parents did because millennials have different consumer preferences than their Baby Boomer parents. Rather than shopping in big-box stores for brightly-colored toy packages, millennial parents are more likely to purchase clean, minimalistic, and gender-inclusive toys from Instagram ads or Amazon. Therefore, toy companies are using Millennial preferences (the target audience) to sell toys to their Generation Alpha kids (the target market).

zuri and jane toys

How to determine your target market

Gather consumer data

Know your product’s benefits

Investigate your competitors

Segment your audience

Write a target market statement

Refine your research

01. Gather consumer data

The first step in defining your target market is to learn more about your customers. Even if you’ve just started an online store and don’t have many customers yet, these practices will come in handy further down the line.

Start by gathering information about current and past buyers and try to identify characteristics that they have in common. This data will help you market your product to people with similar interests. If you are still in the early stages of your business and haven’t started selling your product, look at competitor markets and use that information to determine your target market.

Using website analytics tools, social media and email marketing analytics platforms, here are some data points you’ll want to consider:

Age: Do your customers share a common decade or generation? Are they millennials, older adults, or something in between?

Location: Where in the world do most of your customers live? Consider the different cities, countries, and regions.

Language: Which languages do your customers speak? Remember that your customers’ language isn’t necessarily the dominant language of their country.

Spending power: Consider socioeconomic factors that may be affecting your customers. How much money are they willing or able to spend?

Hobbies and career: What do your customers enjoy doing? What are their professions, and what do they do in their spare time?

Stage of life: Where are your customers in life? Are they college students? New parents? Retirees?

If your company is B2B rather than B2C , you’ll want to look for characteristics of companies, rather than individual consumers. These traits include:

Business size: Are the businesses that buy from you small, medium, or large?

Location: Where are these businesses physically located?

Vertical: Which industries are most of these businesses in?

Budget: How have these businesses raised money ? Consider how much they’d be willing or able to spend on products like yours.

Be sure to track this information in an orderly manner so that you can keep your findings organized and easily identify trends. Analyzing these trends will allow you to identify shared characteristics within your customer base. These characteristics will inform your inbound marketing efforts and steer your strategy toward your target audience.

02. Know your product benefits

The next step is to understand your consumers’ motivation behind purchasing your product, rather than a competitor. You can learn this information by speaking to your customers directly, asking for testimonials, and by doing in depth competitor research to understand the difference between your product and theirs.

Get to know the benefits—and not just the features—of your product or service. The features are your product’s characteristics. For example, if your business sells suitcases, you might describe your product as being small, compact and having multiple compartments. Your product’s benefits, on the other hand, are the advantages it brings to your customers. Think about how your product makes someone’s life better or easier. The compact, multi-compartment suitcase offers the benefits of being easy to carry and pack as a carry-on.

It’s vital to understanding how your product fulfills its target market’s specific needs. For the suitcase company discussed above, for instance, the target market would be people who benefit from a lightweight, carry-on suitcase—such as business travelers who take short, frequent trips.

03. Investigate your competitors

Hone in on your target market even further by taking a look at which your competitors are targeting. Of course you won't have access to their customer analytics data, but you can understand their customers with a SWOT analysis .

Take a deep dive into competitor websites, blogs and social channels. Consider who their target market is based on their website content, content marketing strategy, and social media branding. You’ll likely be able to infer details about their audience based on their brand language and tone. You can also check for comments on their social media pages to see which types of people are engaging with their posts.

Take an especially close look at their most successful social media and blog posts. Do these pieces of content have anything in common in terms of their offering or branding? Which interests or needs do they address? Use this information to consider what kinds of qualities or advantages appeal most to consumers within your industry.

04. Segment your audience

At this point, you’ve gathered some information about the characteristics and interests of your target audience. Now, it’s time to use that information to clearly define your customer types. This is going to form the basis of your target market.

The best way to do this is through market segmentation. This involves dividing your customers into different groups, or segments, based on their shared qualities.

You can divide your customers based on:

Geography: Physical location, whether it’s your own city or a different part of the world. Note that if your customers are located around the world, you may need to create a multilingual website, as well as localized ads and marketing materials.

Demographics: Characteristics such as age, gender, race or ethnicity, income level, or marital status.

Psychographics: Inner qualities such as personality, lifestyle, or personal values. These are often a product of geographic and demographic factors such as location, generation, or stage of life.

Behavior: Perceived qualities based on online behavior, such as buyer readiness or frequency of use.

If you’re a B2B company, use similar characteristics but apply them to business. Consider firm demographics—known as firmographics—such as industry, location, customer size, business structure, and performance.

To gain a deeper understanding of your segments, you can also create buyer personas. Also called user personas, buyer personas are imaginary characters with traits and behaviors similar to those of typical customers. Ultimately, these fictional characters represent your target market, helping you gain insights into the needs, desires, and lifestyles of your actual customers.

05. Write a target market statement

Now that you’ve determined the defining features of your audience, it’s time to put your findings on paper. Write a target market statement that focuses on the most important audience characteristics you’ve identified in your research. Your statement should include:

Demographic information about your target market, such as gender and age.

Geographic location of your target market.

Key interests of your target market.

Then, sum it up in a single sentence. For example:

“Our target market is women in their 30s and 40s who live in the United States and enjoy casual, comfortable fashion.”

Doing this will keep your brand identity and marketing efforts consistent. It will also come in useful as you adapt your company’s mission statement to be as relevant as possible for your audience.

06. Refine your research

Defining your target market is based on thorough research, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be perfect the first time around. Even after you identify your market, you’ll still need to continually test and experiment to get an increasingly precise picture of your customers. Staying on top of your market research can also help you keep up with the times, as consumer interests change over the years with technological developments, generational attitudes and passing trends.

To narrow in on your audience, you’ll need to assess your business success and test your targeting efforts. Take a look at who is actually buying from you and which specific products or services they are purchasing. Try to understand how you can adapt future product development or modify your branding or marketing efforts to better fit your customer base.

Utilize A/B testing with your marketing efforts to test the same ad on different audiences and see which version performs better. Alternatively, you can develop two different creatives, each with their own look and language and compare your audience’s responses. Based on the results, you might need to either adjust your business strategy or revise your target market statement. The bottom line is to build a brand that resonates strongly with your audience. Remember, the more targeted your content, the more effective your lead generation strategies—and the more customers you’ll bring to your brand.

What are examples of a target market?

These website examples clearly cater to their target markets. Take note of the phrases and visuals these websites use.

01. Amanda Darby

Let’s take a look at how nutritionist Amanda Darby appeals to her target market. She aims to address people looking to make healthier food and dieting choices. To do this, she’s created a website that fosters a sense of joy and personal empowerment around food. The light and airy background, coupled with the cheerful images of cooking and eating, instantly makes it clear that she targets people looking for a healthy lifestyle.

She also hones in on her audience even further, using phrases that directly appeal to middle-aged women. In the section of her homepage that discusses her nutrition coaching: “You will be the mom who loves food, her body, and knows life isn't perfect, but is perfectly happy living the life she has vs. waiting for the life she will have when she reaches her goal weight.” By directly addressing the concerns of her target market, Amanda helps her audience feel heard and understood. This strengthens their trust in her brand and persuades them that she is the right coach for their needs.

amanda darby

02. Curtinsmith Guitars

From the very first image that appears across the top of this website, it’s clear that Curtinsmith Guitars is crafting something unique. By displaying photographs of their workshop and describing their guitars as “custom” and “handmade,” they directly single out a target market of those looking for unique, one-of-a-kind guitars. This target market is likely musical, appreciative of craftsmanship and not afraid to spend their money on their passions.

The About Us section of the site confirms this targeting. The owner, Paul, writes, “I find it quite profound to create something which, in itself, will continue to create. It is an absolute joy crafting these instruments and it is my prayer that they continue to be a joy for those who play them and listen to them, for many generations.”

In this statement, the brand makes it clear that it targets musicians who value the creative process. They also allude to the quality of their product, portraying them as long-lasting heirlooms with sentimental value.

curtinsmith guitars

03. Lima Cakes

Sona Karapetyan uses her artistic vision to create showstopping celebratory cakes. The About section on her website says that Sona “was always experimenting with graphic art & design” and, “When Sona decided to embark on the cake art journey, she experimented with different textures, shapes and architectural elements to create a unique design language.” It also states that she never creates the same cake twice so each cake is unique to each client.

Her neutral-colored web design and sophisticated copy narrow her target market down to mature individuals who appreciate art. Her website also features images of her cakes, clearly displaying her skills to her potential customers. The prices of her custom-made cakes will reflect the effort that goes into each one. These details show that she likely targets an educated, older, affluent crowd with an appreciation for modern art and design.

lima cakes

What are market segments?

Market segments are subgroups within a larger market that share specific characteristics and needs. These characteristics can include demographics, lifestyle, interests, behavior and purchasing patterns. By identifying and understanding these segments, businesses can tailor their marketing messages, products and services to better resonate with each group. This allows for more targeted and effective marketing efforts.

Target market FAQ

How detailed should a target market be.

The level of detail for a target market depends on your specific business and goals. However, it should be defined enough to create targeted marketing campaigns and avoid wasting resources. Consider including demographic information (age, gender, income, etc.), psychographics (lifestyle, values, interests), and behavioral factors (purchasing habits, media consumption). While details are important, avoid over-segmentation, as it can limit your reach and marketing effectiveness.

What is an example of a target market?

What is the purpose of a target market, what is the best target market, related posts.

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What Is a Target Market?

  • Defining a Product's Target Market
  • 4 Target Markets

Why Are Target Markets Important?

What are market segments, target market and product sales.

  • Target Market FAQs

The Bottom Line

  • Marketing Essentials

Target Market: Definition, Purpose, Examples, Market Segments

example of target customers in business plan

Investopedia / Mira Norian

A target market is a group of people that have been identified as the most likely potential customers for a product because of their shared characteristics, such as age, income, and lifestyle.

Identifying the target market is a key part of the decision-making process when a company designs, packages, and advertises its product.

Key Takeaways

  • A target market is a group of customers with shared demographics who have been identified as the most likely buyers of a company's product or service.
  • Identifying the target market is important in the development and implementation of a successful marketing plan for any new product.
  • The target market also can inform a product's specifications, packaging, and distribution.

How Do I Define My Product's Target Market?

Part of creating a new product is envisioning the consumers who will want it.

A new product must satisfy a need or solve a problem, or both. That need or problem is probably not universal unless it reaches the level of indoor plumbing. More likely, it is needed by a subset of consumers, such as environmentally-conscious vegetarians, or science nerds, or outdoor enthusiasts. It may appeal to a teenager or a middle-aged professional, a bargain-hunter or a snob.

Envisioning your likely target market is part of the process of creating and refining a product, and informs decisions about its packaging, marketing, and placement.

What Are the 4 Target Markets?

Market researchers use activity, interest, and opinion (AIO) surveys to construct psychographic profiles of their target customers. Marketing professionals divide consumers into four major segments:

Demographic: These are the main characteristics that define your target market. Everyone can be identified as belonging to a specific age group, income level, gender, occupation, and education level.

Geographic: This segment is increasingly relevant in the era of globalization. Regional preferences need to be taken into account.

Psychographic: This segment goes beyond the basics of demographics to consider lifestyle, attitudes, interests, and values.

Behavioral: This is the one segment that relies on research into the decisions of a company's current customers. New products may be introduced based on research into the proven appeal of past products.

What Is an Example of a Target Market?

Each of the four target markets can be used to consider who the customer for a new product is.

For example, there are an estimated 100,000 Italian restaurants in the U.S. Clearly, they have enormous appeal.

But a corner pizza joint might appeal mostly, although by no means entirely, to a younger and more budget-conscious consumer, while an old-fashioned white tablecloth place might be dominated by older folks and families who live in the neighborhood. Meanwhile, a newer place down the street might cater to an upscale and trend-conscious crowd who will travel a good distance for the restaurant's innovative menu and fancy wine list.

In each successful case, a savvy business person has consciously considered the ideal target market for the restaurant and has tweaked the menu, decor, and advertising strategy to appeal to that market.

Few products today are designed to appeal to absolutely everyone. The Aveda Rosemary Mint Bath Bar, available for $26 a bar at Aveda beauty stores, is marketed to the upscale and eco-conscious woman who will pay extra for quality. Cle de Peau Beaute Synactif Soap retails for $110 a bar and is marketed to wealthy, fashion-conscious women who are willing to pay a premium for a luxury product. An eight-pack of Dial soap costs $12 at CVS, and it is known to get the job done.

Part of the success of selling a good or service is knowing to whom it will appeal and who will ultimately buy it. Its user base can grow over time through additional marketing, advertising, and word of mouth.

That's why businesses spend a lot of time and money in defining their initial target markets, and why they follow through with special offers, social media campaigns , and specialized advertising.

Dividing a target market into segments means grouping the population according to the key characteristics that drive their spending decisions. Some of these are gender, age, income level, race, education level, religion, marital status, and geographic location.

Consumers with the same demographics tend to value the same products and services, which is why narrowing down the segments is one of the most important factors in determining target markets.

For example, people who fall into a higher income bracket may be more likely to buy specialty coffee from Starbucks instead of Dunkin' Donuts. The parent companies of both of these brands need to know that in order to decide where to locate their stores, where to stock their products, and where to advertise their brand.

A business may have more than one target market—a primary target market, which is the main focus, and a secondary target market, which is smaller but has growth potential. Toy commercials are targeted directly to children. Their parents are the secondary market.

Identifying the target market is an essential part of a product development plan, along with manufacturing, distribution, price, and promotion planning. The target market determines significant factors about the product itself. A company may tweak certain aspects of a product, such as the amount of sugar in a soft drink or the style of the packaging, so that it appeals more to consumers in its target group.

As a company’s product sales grow, it may expand its target market internationally. International expansion allows a company to reach a broader subset of its target market in other regions of the world.

In addition to international expansion, a company may find its domestic target market expands as its products gain more traction in the marketplace. Expanding a product's target market is a revenue opportunity worth pursuing.

How Detailed Should a Target Market Be?

It depends. Broadly speaking, a product may be designed for a mass market or a niche market, and a niche market can be a very small group indeed, especially in a product's early introductory phase.

Some carbonated beverages aim for a practically universal market. Coca-Cola had to branch out to 200 markets abroad to continue growing its customer base. Gatorade is owned by Pepsi Cola, but the brand is positioned as a drink for athletes. The soda brand Poppi, which is branded as a healthy, sparkling, prebiotic soda with real fruit juice, gut health, and immunity benefits, is clearly aimed at a younger, healthier, and more trend-conscious target market.

Consider a casual apparel company that is working to build its distribution channels abroad. In order to determine where its apparel will be most successful, it conducts some research to identify its primary target market. It discovers that the people most likely to buy their products are middle-class women between the ages of 35 and 55 who live in cold climates.

It's reasonable for the company to focus its advertising efforts on northern European websites that have a strong female audience.

But first, the company may consider how its apparel can be most attractive to that target market. It may revise its styles and colors and tweak its advertising strategy to optimize its appeal to this new prospective market.

What Is the Purpose of a Target Market?

A target market defines a product as well as vice versa.

Once a target market is identified, it can influence a product's design, packaging, price, promotion, and distribution.

A product aimed at men won't be packaged in pink plastic. A luxury cosmetic won't be sold in a pharmacy. An expensive pair of shoes comes with a branded cloth drawstring bag as well as a shoebox. All of those factors are signals to the target audience that they have found the right product.

Identifying the target market is part of the process of creating and refining a new product.

A target market can be translated into a profile of the consumer to whom a product is most likely to appeal. The profile considers four main characteristics of that person: demographic, geographic, psychographic, and behavioral.

National Geographic. " How Italian Cuisine Became as American as Apple Pie ."

Aveda. " Rosemary Mint Bath Bar ."

Cle de Peau. " Synactif Soap ."

CVS. " Dial Antibacterial Deodorant Bar Soap, White ."

Coca-Cola Australia. " Coca-Cola: From Start-Up to Global Enterprise ."

Pepsico Partners. " Gatorade ."

DrinkPoppi. " Home ."

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What is a Marketing Plan & How to Write One [+Examples]

Clifford Chi

Published: December 27, 2023

For a while now, you've been spearheading your organization's content marketing efforts, and your team's performance has convinced management to adopt the content marketing strategies you’ve suggested.

marketing plan and how to write one

Now, your boss wants you to write and present a content marketing plan, but you‘ve never done something like that before. You don't even know where to start.

Download Now: Free Marketing Plan Template [Get Your Copy]

Fortunately, we've curated the best content marketing plans to help you write a concrete plan that's rooted in data and produces results. But first, we'll discuss what a marketing plan is and how some of the best marketing plans include strategies that serve their respective businesses.

What is a marketing plan?

A marketing plan is a strategic roadmap that businesses use to organize, execute, and track their marketing strategy over a given period. Marketing plans can include different marketing strategies for various marketing teams across the company, all working toward the same business goals.

The purpose of a marketing plan is to write down strategies in an organized manner. This will help keep you on track and measure the success of your campaigns.

Writing a marketing plan will help you think of each campaign‘s mission, buyer personas, budget, tactics, and deliverables. With all this information in one place, you’ll have an easier time staying on track with a campaign. You'll also discover what works and what doesn't. Thus, measuring the success of your strategy.

Featured Resource: Free Marketing Plan Template

HubSpot Mktg plan cover

Looking to develop a marketing plan for your business? Click here to download HubSpot's free Marketing Plan Template to get started .

To learn more about how to create your marketing plan, keep reading or jump to the section you’re looking for:

How to Write a Marketing Plan

Types of marketing plans, marketing plan examples, marketing plan faqs, sample marketing plan.

Marketing plan definition graphic

If you're pressed for time or resources, you might not be thinking about a marketing plan. However, a marketing plan is an important part of your business plan.

Marketing Plan vs. Business Plan

A marketing plan is a strategic document that outlines marketing objectives, strategies, and tactics.

A business plan is also a strategic document. But this plan covers all aspects of a company's operations, including finance, operations, and more. It can also help your business decide how to distribute resources and make decisions as your business grows.

I like to think of a marketing plan as a subset of a business plan; it shows how marketing strategies and objectives can support overall business goals.

Keep in mind that there's a difference between a marketing plan and a marketing strategy.

example of target customers in business plan

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Marketing Strategy vs. Marketing Plan

A marketing strategy describes how a business will accomplish a particular goal or mission. This includes which campaigns, content, channels, and marketing software they'll use to execute that mission and track its success.

For example, while a greater plan or department might handle social media marketing, you might consider your work on Facebook as an individual marketing strategy.

A marketing plan contains one or more marketing strategies. It's the framework from which all of your marketing strategies are created and helps you connect each strategy back to a larger marketing operation and business goal.

For example, suppose your company is launching a new software product, and it wants customers to sign up. The marketing department needs to develop a marketing plan that'll help introduce this product to the industry and drive the desired signups.

The department decides to launch a blog dedicated to this industry, a new YouTube video series to establish expertise, and an account on Twitter to join the conversation around this subject. All this serves to attract an audience and convert this audience into software users.

To summarize, the business's marketing plan is dedicated to introducing a new software product to the marketplace and driving signups for that product. The business will execute that plan with three marketing strategies : a new industry blog, a YouTube video series, and a Twitter account.

Of course, the business might consider these three things as one giant marketing strategy, each with its specific content strategies. How granular you want your marketing plan to get is up to you. Nonetheless, every marketing plan goes through a particular set of steps in its creation.

Learn what they are below.

  • State your business's mission.
  • Determine the KPIs for this mission.
  • Identify your buyer personas.
  • Describe your content initiatives and strategies.
  • Clearly define your plan's omissions.
  • Define your marketing budget.
  • Identify your competition.
  • Outline your plan's contributors and their responsibilities.

1. State your business's mission.

Your first step in writing a marketing plan is to state your mission. Although this mission is specific to your marketing department, it should serve your business‘s main mission statement.

From my experience, you want to be specific, but not too specific. You have plenty of space left in this marketing plan to elaborate on how you'll acquire new customers and accomplish this mission.


Need help building your mission statement? Download this guide for examples and templates and write the ideal mission statement.

2. Determine the KPIs for this mission.

Every good marketing plan describes how the department will track its mission‘s progress. To do so, you need to decide on your key performance indicators (KPIs) .

KPIs are individual metrics that measure the various elements of a marketing campaign. These units help you establish short-term goals within your mission and communicate your progress to business leaders.

Let's take our example of a marketing mission from the above step. If part of our mission is “to attract an audience of travelers,” we might track website visits using organic page views. In this case, “organic page views” is one KPI, and we can see our number of page views grow over time.

Also, make sure to check whether your current reporting software facilitates the KPIs you need. Some reporting tools can only measure a set of pre-defined metrics, which can cause massive headaches in particular marketing campaigns.

However, other tools, like HubSpot’s analytics software , can offer full flexibility over the KPIs you wish to track. You can generate custom reports that reveal anything from average website engagement rates to page visits via organic, email, social media traffic, and more.   

These KPIs will come into the conversation again in step 4.

3. Identify your buyer personas.

A buyer persona is a description of who you want to attract. This can include age, sex, location, family size, and job title. Each buyer persona should directly reflect your business's current and potential customers. So, all business leaders must agree on your buyer personas.


Create your buyer personas with this free guide and set of buyer persona templates.

4. Describe your content initiatives and strategies.

Here's where you'll include the main points of your marketing and content strategy. Because there's a laundry list of content types and channels available to you today, you must choose wisely and explain how you'll use your content and channels in this section of your marketing plan.

When I write this section , I like to stipulate:

  • Which types of content I'll create. These might include blog posts, YouTube videos, infographics, and ebooks.
  • How much of it I'll create. I typically describe content volume in daily, weekly, monthly, or even quarterly intervals. It all depends on my workflow and the short-term goals for my content.
  • The goals (and KPIs) I'll use to track each type. KPIs can include organic traffic, social media traffic, email traffic, and referral traffic. Your goals should also include which pages you want to drive that traffic to, such as product pages, blog pages, or landing pages.
  • The channels on which I'll distribute my content. Popular channels include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, and Instagram.
  • Any paid advertising that will take place on these channels.

Build out your marketing plan with this free template.

Fill out this form to access the template., 5. clearly define your plan's omissions..

A marketing plan explains the marketing team's focus. It also explains what the marketing team will not focus on.

If there are other aspects of your business that you aren't serving in this particular plan, include them in this section. These omissions help to justify your mission, buyer personas, KPIs, and content. You can’t please everyone in a single marketing campaign, and if your team isn't on the hook for something, you need to make it known.

In my experience, this section is particularly important for stakeholders to help them understand why certain decisions were made.

6. Define your marketing budget.

Whether it's freelance fees, sponsorships, or a new full-time marketing hire, use these costs to develop a marketing budget and outline each expense in this section of your marketing plan.


You can establish your marketing budget with this kit of 8 free marketing budget templates .

7. Identify your competition.

Part of marketing is knowing whom you're marketing against. Research the key players in your industry and consider profiling each one.

Keep in mind not every competitor will pose the same challenges to your business. For example, while one competitor might be ranking highly on search engines for keywords you want your website to rank for, another competitor might have a heavy footprint on a social network where you plan to launch an account.


Easily track and analyze your competitors with this collection of ten free competitive analysis templates .

8. Outline your plan's contributors and their responsibilities.

With your marketing plan fully fleshed out, it's time to explain who’s doing what. I don't like to delve too deeply into my employees’ day-to-day projects, but I know which teams and team leaders are in charge of specific content types, channels, KPIs, and more.

Now that you know why you need to build an effective marketing plan, it’s time to get to work. Starting a plan from scratch can be overwhelming if you haven't done it before. That’s why there are many helpful resources that can support your first steps. We’ll share some of the best guides and templates that can help you build effective results-driven plans for your marketing strategies.

Ready to make your own marketing plan? Get started using this free template.

Depending on the company you work with, you might want to create various marketing plans. We compiled different samples to suit your needs:

1. Quarterly or Annual Marketing Plans

These plans highlight the strategies or campaigns you'll take on in a certain period.

marketing plan examples: forbes

Forbes published a marketing plan template that has amassed almost 4 million views. To help you sculpt a marketing roadmap with true vision, their template will teach you how to fill out the 15 key sections of a marketing plan, which are:

  • Executive Summary
  • Target Customers
  • Unique Selling Proposition
  • Pricing & Positioning Strategy
  • Distribution Plan
  • Your Offers
  • Marketing Materials
  • Promotions Strategy
  • Online Marketing Strategy
  • Conversion Strategy
  • Joint Ventures & Partnerships
  • Referral Strategy
  • Strategy for Increasing Transaction Prices
  • Retention Strategy
  • Financial Projections

If you're truly lost on where to start with a marketing plan, I highly recommend using this guide to help you define your target audience, figure out how to reach them, and ensure that audience becomes loyal customers.

2. Social Media Marketing Plan

This type of plan highlights the channels, tactics, and campaigns you intend to accomplish specifically on social media. A specific subtype is a paid marketing plan, which highlights paid strategies, such as native advertising, PPC, or paid social media promotions.

Shane Snow's Marketing Plan for His Book Dream Team is a great example of a social media marketing plan:

Contently's content strategy waterfall.

When Shane Snow started promoting his new book, "Dream Team," he knew he had to leverage a data-driven content strategy framework. So, he chose his favorite one: the content strategy waterfall. The content strategy waterfall is defined by Economic Times as a model used to create a system with a linear and sequential approach.

Snow wrote a blog post about how the waterfall‘s content strategy helped him launch his new book successfully. After reading it, you can use his tactics to inform your own marketing plan. More specifically, you’ll learn how he:

  • Applied his business objectives to decide which marketing metrics to track.
  • Used his ultimate business goal of earning $200,000 in sales or 10,000 purchases to estimate the conversion rate of each stage of his funnel.
  • Created buyer personas to figure out which channels his audience would prefer to consume his content.
  • Used his average post view on each of his marketing channels to estimate how much content he had to create and how often he had to post on social media.
  • Calculated how much earned and paid media could cut down the amount of content he had to create and post.
  • Designed his process and workflow, built his team, and assigned members to tasks.
  • Analyzed content performance metrics to refine his overall content strategy.

I use Snow's marketing plan to think more creatively about my content promotion and distribution plan. I like that it's linear and builds on the step before it, creating an air-tight strategy that doesn't leave any details out.

→ Free Download: Social Media Calendar Template [Access Now]

3. Content Marketing Plan

This plan could highlight different strategies, tactics, and campaigns in which you'll use content to promote your business or product.

HubSpot's Comprehensive Guide for Content Marketing Strategy is a strong example of a content marketing plan:

marketing plan examples: hubspot content marketing plan

At HubSpot, we‘ve built our marketing team from two business school graduates working from a coffee table to a powerhouse of hundreds of employees. Along the way, we’ve learned countless lessons that shaped our current content marketing strategy. So, we decided to illustrate our insights in a blog post to teach marketers how to develop a successful content marketing strategy, regardless of their team's size.

Download Now: Free Content Marketing Planning Templates

In this comprehensive guide for modern marketers, you'll learn:

  • What exactly content marketing is.
  • Why your business needs a content marketing strategy.
  • Who should lead your content marketing efforts?
  • How to structure your content marketing team based on your company's size.
  • How to hire the right people for each role on your team.
  • What marketing tools and technology you'll need to succeed.
  • What type of content your team should create, and which employees should be responsible for creating them.
  • The importance of distributing your content through search engines, social media, email, and paid ads.
  • And finally, the recommended metrics each of your teams should measure and report to optimize your content marketing program.

This is a fantastic resource for content teams of any size — whether you're a team of one or 100. It includes how to hire and structure a content marketing team, what marketing tools you'll need, what type of content you should create, and even recommends what metrics to track for analyzing campaigns. If you're aiming to establish or boost your online presence, leveraging tools like HubSpot's drag-and-drop website builder can be extremely beneficial. It helps you create a captivating digital footprint that sets the foundation for your content marketing endeavors.

4. New Product Launch Marketing Plan

This will be a roadmap for the strategies and tactics you‘ll implement to promote a new product. And if you’re searching for an example, look no further than Chief Outsiders' Go-To-Market Plan for a New Product :

marketing plan examples: chief outsiders

After reading this plan, you'll learn how to:

  • Validate a product
  • Write strategic objectives
  • Identify your market
  • Compile a competitive landscape
  • Create a value proposition for a new product
  • Consider sales and service in your marketing plan

If you're looking for a marketing plan for a new product, the Chief Outsiders template is a great place to start. Marketing plans for a new product will be more specific because they target one product versus its entire marketing strategy.

5. Growth Marketing Plan

Growth marketing plans use experimentation and data to drive results, like we see in Venture Harbour’s Growth Marketing Plan Template :

marketing plan examples: venture harbour

Venture Harbour's growth marketing plan is a data-driven and experiment-led alternative to the more traditional marketing plan. Their template has five steps intended for refinement with every test-measure-learn cycle. The five steps are:

  • Experiments

Download Now: Free Growth Strategy Template

I recommend this plan if you want to experiment with different platforms and campaigns. Experimentation always feels risky and unfamiliar, but this plan creates a framework for accountability and strategy.

  • Louisville Tourism
  • University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
  • Visit Oxnard
  • Safe Haven Family Shelter
  • Wright County Economic Development
  • The Cultural Council of Palm Beach County
  • Cabarrus County Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • Visit Billings

1. Louisville Tourism

Louisville Tourism Marketing Plan

It also divides its target market into growth and seed categories to allow for more focused strategies. For example, the plan recognizes Millennials in Chicago, Atlanta, and Nashville as the core of it's growth market, whereas people in Boston, Austin, and New York represent seed markets where potential growth opportunities exist. Then, the plan outlines objectives and tactics for reaching each market.

Why This Marketing Plan Works

  • The plan starts with a letter from the President & CEO of the company, who sets the stage for the plan by providing a high-level preview of the incoming developments for Louisville's tourism industry
  • The focus on Louisville as "Bourbon City" effectively leverages its unique cultural and culinary attributes to present a strong brand
  • Incorporates a variety of data points from Google Analytics, Arrivalist, and visitor profiles to to define their target audience with a data-informed approach

2. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

University Illinois

For example, students who become prospects as freshman and sophomore will receive emails that focus on getting the most out of high school and college prep classes. Once these students become juniors and seniors — thus entering the consideration stage — the emails will focus more on the college application process and other exploratory content.

  • The plan incorporates competitive analysis, evaluation surveys, and other research to determine the makeup of its target audience
  • The plan lists each marketing program (e.g., direct mail, social media, email etc.) and supplements it with examples on the next page
  • Each marketing program has its own objectives, tactics, and KPIs for measuring success

3. Visit Oxnard

This marketing plan by Visit Oxnard, a convention and visitors bureau, is packed with all the information one needs in a marketing plan: target markets, key performance indicators, selling points, personas, marketing tactics by channel, and much more.

It also articulates the organization’s strategic plans for the upcoming fiscal year, especially as it grapples with the aftereffects of the pandemic. Lastly, it has impeccable visual appeal, with color-coded sections and strong branding elements.

  • States clear and actionable goals for the coming year
  • Includes data and other research that shows how their team made their decisions
  • Outlines how the team will measure the success of their plan

4. Safe Haven Family Shelter

marketing plan examples: safe haven family shelter

This marketing plan by a nonprofit organization is an excellent example to follow if your plan will be presented to internal stakeholders at all levels of your organization. It includes SMART marketing goals , deadlines, action steps, long-term objectives, target audiences, core marketing messages , and metrics.

The plan is detailed, yet scannable. By the end of it, one can walk away with a strong understanding of the organization’s strategic direction for its upcoming marketing efforts.

  • Confirms ongoing marketing strategies and objectives while introducing new initiatives
  • Uses colors, fonts, and formatting to emphasize key parts of the plan
  • Closes with long-term goals, key themes, and other overarching topics to set the stage for the future

5. Wright County Economic Development

marketing plan examples: wright county

Wright County Economic Development’s plan drew our attention because of its simplicity, making it good inspiration for those who’d like to outline their plan in broad strokes without frills or filler.

It includes key information such as marketing partners, goals, initiatives, and costs. The sections are easy to scan and contain plenty of information for those who’d like to dig into the details. Most important, it includes a detailed breakdown of projected costs per marketing initiative — which is critical information to include for upper-level managers and other stakeholders.

  • Begins with a quick paragraph stating why the recommended changes are important
  • Uses clear graphics and bullet points to emphasize key points
  • Includes specific budget data to support decision-making

6. The Cultural Council of Palm Beach County

marketing plan examples: cultural council of palm beach county

This marketing plan presentation by a cultural council is a great example of how to effectively use data in your plan, address audiences who are new to the industry, and offer extensive detail into specific marketing strategies.

For instance, an entire slide is dedicated to the county’s cultural tourism trends, and at the beginning of the presentation, the organization explains what an arts and culture agency is in the first place.

That’s a critical piece of information to include for those who might not know. If you’re addressing audiences outside your industry, consider defining terms at the beginning, like this organization did.

  • Uses quality design and images to support the goals and priorities in the text
  • Separate pages for each big idea or new strategy
  • Includes sections for awards and accomplishments to show how the marketing plan supports wider business goals
  • Defines strategies and tactics for each channel for easy skimming

7. Cabarrus County Convention & Visitors Bureau

marketing plan examples: carrabus county

Cabarrus County’s convention and visitors bureau takes a slightly different approach with its marketing plan, formatting it like a magazine for stakeholders to flip through. It offers information on the county’s target audience, channels, goals, KPIs, and public relations strategies and initiatives.

We especially love that the plan includes contact information for the bureau’s staff members, so that it’s easy for stakeholders to contact the appropriate person for a specific query.

  • Uses infographics to expand on specific concepts, like how visitors benefit a community
  • Highlights the team members responsible for each initiative with a photo to emphasize accountability and community
  • Closes with an event calendar for transparency into key dates for events

8. Visit Billings

marketing plan examples: visit billings

Visit Billing’s comprehensive marketing plan is like Cabarrus County’s in that it follows a magazine format. With sections for each planned strategy, it offers a wealth of information and depth for internal stakeholders and potential investors.

We especially love its content strategy section, where it details the organization’s prior efforts and current objectives for each content platform.

At the end, it includes strategic goals and budgets — a good move to imitate if your primary audience would not need this information highlighted at the forefront.

  • Includes a section on the buyer journey, which offers clarity on the reasoning for marketing plan decisions
  • Design includes call-outs for special topics that could impact the marketing audience, such as safety concerns or "staycations"
  • Clear headings make it easy to scan this comprehensive report and make note of sections a reader may want to return to for more detail

What is a typical marketing plan?

In my experience, most marketing plans outline the following aspects of a business's marketing:

  • Target audience

Each marketing plan should include one or more goals, the path your team will take to meet those goals, and how you plan to measure success.

For example, if I were a tech startup that's launching a new mobile app, my marketing plan would include:

  • Target audience or buyer personas for the app
  • Outline of how app features meet audience needs
  • Competitive analysis
  • Goals for conversion funnel and user acquisition
  • Marketing strategies and tactics for user acquisition

Featured resource : Free Marketing Plan Template

What should a good marketing plan include?

A good marketing plan will create a clear roadmap for your unique marketing team. This means that the best marketing plan for your business will be distinct to your team and business needs.

That said, most marketing plans will include sections for one or more of the following:

  • Clear analysis of the target market
  • A detailed description of the product or service
  • Strategic marketing mix details (such as product, price, place, promotion)
  • Measurable goals with defined timelines

This can help you build the best marketing plan for your business.

A good marketing plan should also include a product or service's unique value proposition, a comprehensive marketing strategy including online and offline channels, and a defined budget.

Featured resource : Value Proposition Templates

What are the most important parts of a marketing plan?

When you‘re planning a road trip, you need a map to help define your route, step-by-step directions, and an estimate of the time it will take to get to your destination. It’s literally how you get there that matters.

Like a road map, a marketing plan is only useful if it helps you get to where you want to go. So, no one part is more than the other.

That said, you can use the list below to make sure that you've added or at least considered each of the following in your marketing plan:

  • Marketing goals
  • Executive summary
  • Target market analysis
  • Marketing strategies

What questions should I ask when making a marketing plan?

Questions are a useful tool for when you‘re stuck or want to make sure you’ve included important details.

Try using one or more of these questions as a starting point when you create your marketing plan:

  • Who is my target audience?
  • What are their needs, motivations, and pain points?
  • How does our product or service solve their problems?
  • How will I reach and engage them?
  • Who are my competitors? Are they direct or indirect competitors?
  • What are the unique selling points of my product or service?
  • What marketing channels are best for the brand?
  • What is our budget and timeline?
  • How will I measure the success of marketing efforts?

How much does a marketing plan cost?

Creating a marketing plan is mostly free. But the cost of executing a marketing plan will depend on your specific plan.

Marketing plan costs vary by business, industry, and plan scope. Whether your team handles marketing in-house or hires external consultants can also make a difference. Total costs can range from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands. This is why most marketing plans will include a budget.

Featured resource : Free Marketing Budget Templates

What is a marketing plan template?

A marketing plan template is a pre-designed structure or framework that helps you outline your marketing plan.

It offers a starting point that you can customize for your specific business needs and goals. For example, our template includes easy-to-edit sections for:

  • Business summary
  • Business initiatives
  • Target market
  • Market strategy
  • Marketing channels
  • Marketing technology

Let’s create a sample plan together, step by step.

Follow along with HubSpot's free Marketing Plan Template .

HubSpot Mktg plan cover

1. Create an overview or primary objective.

Our business mission is to provide [service, product, solution] to help [audience] reach their [financial, educational, business related] goals without compromising their [your audience’s valuable asset: free time, mental health, budget, etc.]. We want to improve our social media presence while nurturing our relationships with collaborators and clients.

For example, if I wanted to focus on social media growth, my KPIs might look like this:

We want to achieve a minimum of [followers] with an engagement rate of [X] on [social media platform].

The goal is to achieve an increase of [Y] on recurring clients and new meaningful connections outside the platform by the end of the year.

Use the following categories to create a target audience for your campaign.

  • Profession:
  • Background:
  • Pain points:
  • Social media platforms that they use:
  • Streaming platforms that they prefer:

For more useful strategies, consider creating a buyer persona in our Make My Persona tool .

Our content pillars will be: [X, Y, Z].

Content pillars should be based on topics your audience needs to know. If your ideal clients are female entrepreneurs, then your content pillars can be: marketing, being a woman in business, remote working, and productivity hacks for entrepreneurs.

Then, determine any omissions.

This marketing plan won’t be focusing on the following areas of improvement: [A, B, C].

5. Define your marketing budget.

Our marketing strategy will use a total of [Y] monthly. This will include anything from freelance collaborations to advertising.

6. Identify your competitors.

I like to work through the following questions to clearly indicate who my competitors are:

  • Which platforms do they use the most?
  • How does their branding differentiate?
  • How do they talk to their audiences?
  • What valuable assets do customers talk about? And if they are receiving any negative feedback, what is it about?

7. Outline your plan's contributors and their responsibilities.

Create responsible parties for each portion of the plan.

Marketing will manage the content plan, implementation, and community interaction to reach the KPIs.

  • Social media manager: [hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations]
  • Content strategist: [hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations]
  • Community manager: [hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations]

Sales will follow the line of the marketing work while creating and implementing an outreach strategy.

  • Sales strategists: [hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations]
  • Sales executives: [hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations]

Customer Service will nurture clients’ relationships to ensure that they have what they want. [Hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations].

Project Managers will track the progress and team communication during the project. [Hours per week dedicated to the project, responsibilities, team communication requirements, expectations].

Get started on your marketing plan.

These marketing plans serve as initial resources to get your content marketing plan started. But, to truly deliver what your audience wants and needs, you'll likely need to test some different ideas out, measure their success, and then refine your goals as you go.

Editor's Note: This post was originally published in April 2019, but was updated for comprehensiveness. This article was written by a human, but our team uses AI in our editorial process. Check out our full disclosure t o learn more about how we use AI.

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Lead Generation in 2024: The Ultimate Guide 

Lead Generation in 2024: The Ultimate Guide 

Written by: Masooma Memon

An illustration showcasing the different ways a company can generate leads.

Up to 61% of marketers say generating leads and traffic is their biggest challenge. 

If you’re among these marketers, you’re in the right place. Because in this guide, we’ll walk you through 12 proven lead generation strategies that are sure to drive leads your way. 

The one thing you need to be mindful of though is being consistent. 

Once you shortlist some lead generation tactics, stick with them. 

Most of the time, the problem isn’t in the tactic like the majority of us assume. Instead, it’s in the inconsistency — the haste to see results and, when failing to do so, giving up way too soon. 

With that, let’s dig into the nuts and bolts of your biggest challenge, lead generation. 

Here’s a short selection of 8 easy-to-edit lead generation templates you can edit, share and download with Visme. View more templates below:

example of target customers in business plan

Table of Contents

  • What Is Lead Generation

The Lead Generation Process

12 lead generation strategies for 2024, lead generation best practices.

  • Lead Generation FAQs
  • Lead generation, or lead gathering, attracts interested customers to your business, nurturing them and converting them into paying customers. A lead is a potential customer who shows interest in your product/service and may end up buying from you.
  • First, you generate a lead by collecting a contact email; then, you nurture it through the lead generation cycle until they convert.
  • The three industry-standard lead generation types are Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLSs), Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs) and Product Qualified Leads (PQLs).
  • Lead generation helps brands target the right people, build brand loyalty, increase business awareness and create a pipeline of qualified leads.
  • Some creative lead generation ideas include writing problem-solving blog posts, hosting podcasts and webinars, launching well-timed popups, email marketing, referral programs and much more.
  • Follow these lead generation best practices for optimal results: segment your email lists, craft killer copy and retarget hesitant leads.
  • Incorporate Visme Forms into your strategy to collect qualified leads from your landing pages, blogs and digital content.

What is Lead Generation? 

Lead generation is the process of attracting interested customers to your business, nurturing them and converting them into paying customers. 

So you aren’t only going to focus on attracting leads but also nurturing and converting them. But first: 

What is a lead?

A lead is a potential customer—a stranger who shows interest in your product/service and may end up buying from you. 

Not all leads are created equal, though. 

Some leads come from the marketing team and are therefore, called Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLSs) . Other leads come from the sales teams and are called Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs) . S till, others are generated from the free product trials that you may offer. These are Product Qualified Leads (PQLs) . 

Similarly, not all leads show an equal level of interest in your business. It’s why you have: 

  • Cold leads or leads with next to no interest in your product/service 
  • Warm leads or leads with some interest in your product/service 
  • Hot leads or ready-to-convert leads 

Warm leads need nurturing (engaging with value) to convert. Hot leads, on the other hand, need the right push with the right offer to convert. 

Cold leads, however, won’t convert—no matter what you do. It’s best to leave them be and focus on attracting and engaging interested leads. 

Types of Lead Generation

Some leads come from the marketing team, while others come from the sales team. And still, others are generated from the free product trials that you may offer. That said, not all leads show an equal level of interest in your business.

These are the best and most common types of leads.

  • Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLSs)
  • Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs)
  • Product Qualified Leads (PQLs)
  • Cold leads or leads with next to no interest in your product/service
  • Warm leads or leads with some interest in your product/service
  • Hot leads or ready-to-convert leads
  • In-person vs. online lead generation

Hey marketers! Need to create scroll-stopping visual content fast?

  • Transform your visual content with Visme’s easy-to-use content creation platform
  • Produce beautiful, effective marketing content quickly even without an extensive design skillset
  • Inspire your sales team to create their own content with branded templates for easy customization

Sign up. It’s free.

example of target customers in business plan

Lead Generation vs. Lead Nurturing

Lead generation and lead nurturing are sequential; first, you must generate the lead to be nurtured. Nurturing a lead means that you, as a brand, must use value to engage with the lead in order to convince them to convert.

Looking at the types of leads, for example, warm leads need nurturing to convert, while hot leads need the right push with the right offer to convert. The amount of nurturing differs and depends on how warm or hot the lead is.

Why Is Lead Generation Important for Brands?

Without lead generation, you’re never going to have a pipeline of customers interested in your product/service. 

You may buy some leads and call it a day. 

But be warned: those leads are likely not your target buyers and they’ve never heard of you before. 

So any attempt at reaching out to them will feel like an invasion of their privacy since they never gave you explicit permission to cold contact them.

The question now is: what’s the right way to reach out to leads aligned to your buyer persona? Lead generation.

An infographic sharing the benefits of lead generation.

The process helps you: 

Target the right people 

Valued-focused lead generation that’s designed to resonate with your target audience helps you attract qualified leads . 

These leads are also more likely to share their contact information with you, therefore, giving you permission to reach them. 

Build brand loyalty 

The right leads who find your marketing valuable are not only going to convert into paying customers but also loyal customers. The reason? You’ve reached them out only after they gave you permission. 

Plus, you’ve nurtured them by providing value. This way, they can tell you’re focused on their success — not just making sales. 

Improve brand impact on your lead magnets by applying your branding guidelines. Use the Visme Brand Wizard to not only create branded lead magnets but all sorts of content for every aspect of your business.

Increase business awareness 

Even if strangers don’t convert into leads, seeing your value-centered lead generation tactics can make them aware of your brand. 

As a result, they’re likely to recommend you to others or buy from you down the line whenever they’re ready. 

Create a full pipeline of leads

With the correct lead generation marketing strategy in place, you’ll keep generating new leads, nurturing them and converting them regularly. This helps you develop a healthy pipeline of customers, keeping your business afloat.

When you share lead magnets made with Visme you have the ability not only to track opens and reads but also to capture emails. Add a lead capture form to the lead magnet where readers can input their email before reading the content. All collected emails will be available inside your Visme analytics window.

Visme Forms elements

Opportunity to personalize your messaging 

As leads share their contact information with you, you can use it to personalize your marketing materials . This helps you learn more about your target buyer and nurture them better. 

Personalizing lead magnets is easy when you use Visme’s dynamic fields feature . Create a dynamic field for the target’s name and personalization mentions. Then simply change that in the dynamic fields window instead of having to skim through every lead magnet every time.

example of target customers in business plan

Create any type of marketing content with Visme!

  • Choose from dozens of professionally designed templates
  • Add and alter icons, colors, fonts, images and more
  • Customize anything to fit your brand image and content needs

Following a process with your lead generation efforts will help your team do it repeatedly and effectively every time. Over time, you'll be able to build a solid lead generation system that drives consistent success.

Made with Visme Infographic Maker

Here is an 8-step cyclical process:

  • Analyze and plan a lead generation goal.
  • Research the market and conduct a gap analysis.
  • Craft your message following brand guidelines.
  • Promote lead magnets at the top of the funnel with TOFU lead generation strategies.
  • Design and launch lead generation landing pages to collect emails in exchange for valuable content.
  • Send emails or make phone calls mid-funnel to potential leads. These outreach efforts are part of your sales lead generation strategy.
  • Score leads and add them to a nurture sequence.
  • Evaluate results to create reports to use as a reference in the future.
  • Analyze, Iterate and improve the process.

On to the meaty part now: the 12 lead generation ideas. These proven lead generation tips will fuel will your success in 2024.

1. Write problem-solving blog posts.

In-depth, SEO-optimized content is an effective way to attract your target leads by providing the answers to the questions they have. 

With each blog post though, make sure you add a call-to-action (CTA). This could be anything from trying your SaaS tool for free or downloading a related checklist in exchange for their contact information. Your CTAs can be visuals that break up the text or popups with a signup form. The trick is to not overwhelm the reader but instead pique their interest.

An example of a valuable blog post with a lead magnet from CoSchedule.

Image Source

The goal? Get your readers’ contact information (in exchange for value) and add them to your lead nurturing pipeline. 

2. Launch a podcast.

This could be in collaboration with a teammate or you could invite guest hosts. 

Either way, use the podcast to build relationships in the industry and with your target audience. 

For example, at the end of an episode, you can tell listeners you’ve a guide on the topic that they can download using a specific URL shared in the show notes. In doing so, you can encourage them to share their contact details with you, generating leads the right way. 

For successful lead generation with podcasting though, aim to take the same approach as blogging: answering the questions your target listeners have. 

You can even ask them to email their questions to you as Michael Stelzner, host of the Social Media Marketing Podcast does. 

Use a template like the one below to share teasers for upcoming episodes.

A podcast episode teaser graphic available to customize in Visme.

3. Try email marketing.

Email marketing showcases an impressive ROI of $44 for every $1 spent . 

Build your email list organically using social media and collaborations with other newsletter creators. 

Remember that people are always conscious about sharing their email addresses. However, the good news is that only interested ones are open to sharing their contact information. 

Meaning: chances of building an email list of interested leads are high. 

Once people share their email though, it’s essential you make subscribing to your newsletter worth their time. Offer them: 

  • Helpful content such as quick tips 
  • Interviews with industry-leading experts
  • Subscriber-only content resources and discount codes 

Whatever the format you finalize for your emails, make sure you consistently message your list on a set day and time. This helps set your audience’s expectations who start anticipating your emails (provided the content is good). 

Also, note that the key to leads-winning email marketing is a non-salesy approach. 

The form template below is a newsletter sign up form which you can add as a popup to your website, inside blog content or inside a digital document.

Visme pop forms for newsletter

4. Host webinars.

Webinars are a great lead generation tool. The reason? 

Unlike blogging, your audience gets to meet you live (or recorded) and ask questions. This helps double the amount of value you offer, earn more trust, and build better connections. 

What’s more, you can leverage webinars not just to attract leads, but also to slowly introduce your product to the viewers. This way, you can show (not just talk about) your product benefits .

Use a customizable template like this one to create your own webinar slides.

A webinar template available to customize in Visme.

5. Create value-packed lead magnets.

Lead magnets such as white papers , research reports, ebooks, and more are great lead generation tools . 

And, they come with a ton of benefits. 

Case in point: ebooks . These are easy to create. Simply repurpose written content. For example, expanding on it where needed to make it more in-depth. 

Plus, use a Visme ebook template like the one below for designing it and you’re done. 

An ebook template available to customize in Visme.

The same is true about white papers . However, you’d need a subject matter expert to write the content. As for designing: again pull a template from Visme’s bank and design your lead magnet in no time. 

Similarly, research reports can help you build links — not just leads. Plus, you can use the findings from your report to inform more of your content. 

Don’t forget to create a landing page for your research report so interested leads can easily share their email and get the report in exchange. 

A "State of" report template available to customize in Visme.

6. Take time to network.

Networking with your target audience is the best way to build a reputation and strong relationships. 

With this tactic though, it can be challenging to prove the ROI to relevant stakeholders. Even so, networking opens doors to not just new leads but other opportunities too. 

For example, your target buyers start seeing you as an authority in your field — based on the conversations you have with them. 

Targeted lead generation increases brand awareness and also brings you more referrals. 

You can use Visme's AI writer to help you with copyy for your lead generation content. It can generate content ideas, proofread and edit your text and even create first drafts for you. All you have to do is explain to the tool what you want it to write and watch the magic happen.

7. Launch well-timed popups.

Often, popups earn a negative reputation as they hinder site visitors’ experience on your page. 

However, well-timed popups with relevant messages can skyrocket your conversion rate — whether that’s converting site visitors into leads or leads into customers. 

For example, instead of having a popup surface as soon as a visitor lands on your page, time it to show after they’ve scrolled to a point. 

At the same time, make your offer hyper-relevant to the visitor. 

For example, if they’re reading a blog post on how to live stream, create a scroll-point popup that offers readers a checklist for setting up their first live stream. 

One last point, it’s important you design clutter-free popups with a clear CTA button and exit option.

Visme Forms

Visme's popup form builder is an excellent tool for creating effective, well-timed popups. It allows you to customize the forms based on user actions and site interaction, significantly boosting conversion rates. The 3D animated characters and interactive elements not only leave a lasting impression on visitors but double your conversion rates.

8. Create a referral program.

Referral programs encourage your customers to send more leads your way provided you give them a good incentive to do so. 

For instance, you can offer customers a discount for referring your service or product to others. 

However, for a referral program to succeed, it’s essential you make it easy for customers to share your business. By giving them unique referral links, you can make referral marketing work in your favor.

An infographic sharing why referral marketing matters.

9. Tap into video marketing.

Although it may seem like creating videos takes a lot of work, the right tools can make everything easy. 

But first, make sure video is your audience’s preferred content format. Then, use Visme’s video templates to create bite-size videos for lead generation. 

You can also record yourself or your screen to create quick explainer videos . 

Want to start a YouTube channel for leveraging video marketing for lead generation? Repurpose your blog content into videos. This way, you won’t run out of ideas for videos to create.  

10. Try social media for lead generation.

66% of marketers say they’ve generated leads via social media after spending only six hours per week on social media marketing. 

So how can you start attracting leads with social media lead generation? 

First, figure out which channels your audience uses the most. For B2B marketers selling to professionals , for instance, LinkedIn is a great platform for lead generation. 

For those targeting millennials, TikTok is a better option while marketers trying to reach seniors should give Facebook a shot. 

Second, develop an engaged presence on the network(s) you decide to use for attracting customers. 

It’s important you contribute with value and focus on building relationships. At the same time, share helpful content — complete with custom-designed social media graphics for positioning yourself as the expert in your vertical. 

Choose if you’ll concentrate on organic lead generation techniques or paid ads to create content accordingly.

Here are some must-follow tips for designing the graphics: 

example of target customers in business plan

Lastly, share discount codes with your social followers. This way, you can get them to buy from you directly via social. 

But, remember, never take a sales-first approach — always provide value first to win leads’ trust. 

11. Create a community.

Community marketing has become an important part of several businesses’ marketing plans lately. 

The reason it helps generate leads ? Building a community helps you work with your target audience to help them solve their problem (related to your product space) for free. 

It’s when community members see that you’re an authority in your field and are laser-focused on their success that they start trusting you. The result? Not only will they buy from you (when ready) but also refer others your way. 

Want to double the value you provide to your community? Try this: 

  • Invite industry thought leaders for AMA (ask me anything) sessions 
  • Provide free (and paid) resources such as templates, cheatsheets, and short courses 
  • Host community-wide discussion sessions on topics of your community choice 

Do you love Visme and would like to get first access to new features? Are you a Visme power user and want to share your experience with others? Join the Visme community !

12. Tap into visual marketing.

Finally, design custom visuals such as infographics to generate leads. 

You can also submit infographics to guest sites, therefore, attracting leads from other high-traffic websites. 

Essentially, the idea behind creating branded visuals is spreading brand awareness and driving referrals. 

It works well because branded visuals help you stand out from your competitors and leave a memorable impression on your audience. Take advantage of all the design tools inside your Visme editor; from animated illustrations to your very own AI-generated images .

Use a template like the one below to create your own infographic.

A list infographic template available to customize in Visme.

Are you looking for more lead generation strategies? Our guide on timeless lead generation strategies is just what you need. And if you want to discover specific B2B lead generation strategies read our guide with 13 ways to maximize your lead generation efforts .

Lead generation is critical for your business, but most importantly, it’s critical to do it right. Otherwise, why all the effort?

If you're wondering how to generate more leads, here are five lead generation best practices to optimize your lead gen strategies:

Make it Easy For People to Give You Their Email

To grab a lead, you need their contact email first. Don’t make it complicated or annoying for people; make it simple.

Instead of lengthy forms, ask only for an email and name. Instead of three popups, use only one powerful one.

Simply the process of collecting contact information using Visme's lead generation forms . The user-friendly form builder allows you to easily create forms and customize the form fields according to your needs.

Write Powerful Calls to Action

The copy in your calls to action must grab the interest of readers and visitors quickly and effectively. Don’t use vague and superficial words that everybody else uses like “the best.” Write calls to action that speak directly to your ideal customer profile (ICP) .

Segment Your Email Contact Lists

Segmenting email lists helps personalize communication with your leads, especially if you have several ICPs. Use different styles of segments like the lead’s industry, location, or interest. You can gain this information with surveys and simple questionnaires.

Retarget Hesitant Leads

Hesitant leads are the ones that seem like they might convert but haven’t yet. They’re also called warm leads and will need more nurturing than other types of leads. You can retarget them by sending segmented emails, calling them on the phone or offering free trials or gifts.

Use Lead Scoring Systems

Knowing if a lead is good or not isn’t simple. You can’t always rely on a hunch to know if a lead is qualified or not. A scoring system can help tag leads according to specific characteristics. Using the score, you can create a list to show you the best leads to contact first.

Frequently Asked Questions About Lead Generation

Still unsure about some things related to lead generation? Don’t worry, these FAQs will surely help.

Q. How Do You Know If a Lead Is Good?

To know if a lead is good, or qualified, ensure that it checks off all these characteristics:

  • You can tell they’re a real person. Look for them on LinkedIn or online to find their name and work position.
  • They have decision power. These can be business owners or managers with buying power.
  • They engage with your content regularly. Find them on social media and see if they interact with your posts.
  • Their characteristics match your user personas. You’ll need to have some type of lead scoring system to really know.

Q. What Are the Benefits of Lead Generation?

Lead generation has many positive benefits for all types of businesses. Here are the most impactful:

  • It helps expand your market and grow your following.
  • Lead generation can boost your revenue.
  • It generates more business opportunities.
  • Generating leads reduces cold calling and is more cost-effective.

Q. What Are Common Lead Generation Challenges?

Like everything in business, there are some challenges to lead generation, but nothing you can’t overcome with good strategies.

These are the most challenging setbacks, each with a tip on how to overcome it:

  • Pinpointing the ideal strategy for your business. Fix this by doing market research and fostering communication between marketing and sales teams.
  • Nurturing leads quickly and effectively. Nurturing the wrong leads or not knowing how to do it properly won’t get results. use lead scoring systems and use sales processes to nurture leads positively.
  • Always having valuable content to offer as an opt-in. If you don’t have time to create new content every time, use repurposing techniques with content you already have. Simply add more value to the version you offer as an opt-in.
  • Not being able to reach the right people. This is another challenge you can overcome with market research and a user persona profile .

Here’s a user persona profile you can use to set yours up.

Ride-Sharing App Customer Persona

Q. What Tools Can You Use for Lead Generation?

For optimal lead generation strategies, you need a combination of tools that do different things. Here’s a list of the essentials:

  • A content-authoring tool like Visme creates all the valuable content you’ll use in opt-ins and nurturing sequences. Plus, all you need to create lead generation plans, user personas and process flowcharts.
  • An email provider to create lead nurturing sequences and send out emails to hesitant leads.
  • Landing pages to promote opt-in campaigns for ebooks, downloadable guides and courses.
  • Email popups grab people’s attention and entice them to sign up for a webinar, an event or a special offer.
  • Sales battlecards empower your sales team to talk to leads on the phone and convert to sales.

Here’s a sales battlecard template you can start using immediately with Visme.

TrickyCommerce Sales Battlecard

If you want to explore effective B2B lead generation tools and strategies, read our guide about B2B lead generators . It explores how leveraging the right tools, including Visme for content creation, can significantly enhance your lead generation efforts.

Q. What Is a Qualified Lead?

Qualified leads are the best types of leads. They are the ones that will most likely convert with the right amount of effort from your sales team. For a lead to be considered qualified, they must be real people, have decision making power and be honestly interested in your business.

Q. What Is a Lead Gen Lifecycle?

The lead generation lifecycle starts when a person becomes a lead and ends when they buy from you. The process differs for every lead. Some need a lot of nurturing, while others need none at all.

Q. What are the Best Lead Generation Tools?

There's a wide range of tools to help you streamline your lead generation process. Here are the five most popular options:

  • Visme : A comprehensive design platform for creating visually engaging lead magnets , landing pages, social media graphics and more. It also offers built-in forms for collecting leads.
  • HubSpot : A popular CRM and marketing automation suite with tools for email marketing, landing page creation and lead tracking.
  • OptinMonster : A lead generation toolkit specializing in popups, slide-ins and other attention-grabbing forms to capture leads.
  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator: An invaluable tool for identifying and connecting with qualified leads on LinkedIn.
  • Mailchimp : A popular email marketing platform that includes features for landing page creation, audience segmentation and lead nurturing campaigns.

Q. How Do You Qualify a Lead?

Lead qualification helps you determine if a potential customer fits your product or service well.

Here's a common approach:

  • Ideal Customer Profile (ICP): Define your ideal customer's characteristics, such as company size, industry, job title and pain points. Leads that closely match your ICP are more likely to be qualified.
  • Lead Scoring: Assign points to leads based on their actions like website visits, content downloads and email engagement. Higher scores indicate stronger potential.
  • BANT Framework: This is a classic model to assess leads based on:
  • Budget: Do they have the resources to buy?
  • Authority: Do they have decision-making power?
  • Need: Do they have a problem your solution addresses?
  • Timeline: How soon are they looking to purchase?

Q. What Are the Different Types of Lead Generation?

There are countless lead generation strategies, but some common types include:

  • Content Marketing: Creating valuable content, such as blog posts, videos and ebooks, to attract and engage potential customers.
  • Email Marketing: Building an email list and sending targeted messages to nurture leads.
  • Social Media Marketing: Using social platforms to connect with potential leads and promote lead-generating content.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Optimizing your website and content to rank higher in search engine results.
  • Paid Advertising: Using online advertisements to expand your audience reach and increase website traffic.

Q. What’s the difference Between Lead Generation and Demand Generation?

Lead generation and demand generation are often used interchangeably, but there's a key difference:

Lead generation focuses on capturing the contact information of potential customers interested in your product or service.

On the other hand, demand generation is a broader strategy for creating awareness, interest and desire for your product or service among a wider audience.

In other words, a well-designed demand generation strategy creates the initial interest to fill the top of your demand generation funnel. In contrast, lead generation focuses on converting that interest into identifiable leads for your sales team to pursue.

Level Up Your Lead Generation Today

With these 12 lead generation tactics, you can attract, nurture and convert leads the right way. 

Remember to pick a few of these ideas for lead generation and stick with them. Give them time to deliver results instead of assuming that they aren’t working.

As for your leads-attracting designs, learn more about how your marketing team can use Visme  and start creating today. 

What Are Sales Leads? Types, Best Practices & Tools

Easily design powerful lead magnets that drive results with Visme

example of target customers in business plan

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About the Author

Masooma Memon is a pizza-loving freelance writer by day and a novel nerd by night. She crafts research-backed, actionable blog posts for SaaS and marketing brands who aim to employ quality content to educate and engage with their audience.

example of target customers in business plan


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