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Should Your Small Businesses Consider Hyper-targeting?

Hyper-targeted Marketing Our Town America

Forbes Technology Council — Keeping your small business staffed and profitable can be a challenge, and determining the right marketing strategy is even trickier. A helpful small business marketing tip is to devote time to discovering your ideal customers and then implement hyper-targeting to improve return on investment. Hyper-targeting can be an efficient tool for small businesses to reach their target demographic, decrease ad spending and create a positive connection with customers. In a nutshell, hyper-targeting is the practice of delivering relevant messaging to your target consumer. Rather than blanketing a neighborhood, technology can now allow you to pick and choose who receives your direct mail piece. Being choosy improves your ability to get qualified leads versus over-saturating a community with people who won’t be interested in your services. Hyper-targeting takes some work upfront, but can deliver better results in the long term. Benefits Of Hyper-targeting • Reach the right audience. Sending direct mail to an entire neighborhood might be beneficial for grocery stores or dry cleaners, but many small businesses appeal to a specific audience. A fitness center with senior customers, a swim school franchise or a CBD store does not cater to everyone in the community. Hyper-targeting can help ensure you are reaching your target audience to increase your ability to garner loyal customers. Hyper-targeting can be a useful tool when it comes to improving your digital marketing efforts. Digital platforms, including Facebook and Google, allow you to tap browser searches, likes and views to customize your campaign. If you already use email marketing to drive sales, hyper-targeting can allow you to personalize digital content to reach specific groups based on demographics or hobbies. • More bang for your buck. My company focuses on new mover marketing, and we have a wealth of experience with direct mail marketing. Sending your message to an entire ZIP code can provide an uptick in customer traffic, especially if you include a proven offer. In our experience, however, delivering targeted mailers can not only increase customer traffic but can also help improve retention and drive repeat visits. Hyper-targeting can allow you to pinpoint your ideal consumer by a variety of markers—including age, income, educational level and lifestyle. Providing stellar customer service when they visit can ensure your efforts convert. • Provide better customer service. Hyper-targeting can enable you to customize your marketing message, which can create a personalized experience for your customers. For example, your ideal customer may be both a Millennial who lives downtown and a senior with disposable income. Hyper-targeting can allow you to change your message between the two age groups to make them more receptive to your brand. How To Get Started With Hyper-targeting Implementing hyper-targeting effectively requires small business owners to do some research and get creative. Here are my small business marketing tips to help you start taking advantage of hyper-targeting. The first step is to take the time to identify your target customer demographic and segment it into several different buyer personas. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer. Understanding your ideal prospect can help you attract high-value customers to boost profits as well as improve products and services. To find out the best buyer personas for your small business, do your research. Talk to your employees and your customers to learn where your patrons work, live and play. Once you compile this information, determine how you want to separate your personas. You may choose to separate them by age, ZIP code or industry and then create a fictional customer from this information. In my experience, a manageable rule of thumb is to start with three personas. Once you have your personas, it’s time to get started. One disadvantage of hyper-targeting is it can take many man-hours to implement. If you think hyper-targeting will help drive traffic, my advice would be to consider finding a partner who can support your efforts and track results. Handing the job off to someone with experience may come at a cost, but a successful marketing strategy can be the differentiator in achieving your sales goals. Staying abreast of new technology, like hyper-targeting, can help small businesses reap the rewards of their marketing efforts. Article by Forbes Technology Council Member and President/CEO/CTO of Our Town America, Michael Plummer Jr. Forbes Technology Council is an invitation-only community for world-class CIOs, CTOs and technology executives.  Brittany N. JohnsonBrittany is the head of Our Town America’s corporate marketing department. She specializes in digital and print media, social media, and public relations. […]

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3 Ways to Use Demographics in Your Marketing Plan

Target by Demographic Our Town America Marketing

Dentistry Today — Using demographics as part of your marketing plan can help your dental practice cut costs by reaching your ideal customer. To prepare for the grand opening of a pediatric dental practice, for example, it’s likely you’d hang televisions, paint the walls bright colors, and launch an interactive new website. While these steps are helpful, they aren’t all you need to do to have a thriving practice. Marketing plays a key role in building your customer base and educating the community about the benefits of pediatric dentistry – or any dental practice, for that matter. Find Your Target Demographic One of the first components of any small business plan is to develop your target demographic. Demographic data looks at the characteristics of a population, including markers like age, gender, location, education level, and occupation. It can help give you a broad understanding of your customer base. The target demographic can impact your dental practice decor, procedures, and hours of operation. Look around your pediatric dental practice and take note of the fish tanks, video game consoles, and the big bin of prizes taking up prime real estate. Whether you put pen to paper and defined your ideal customer, it’s clear you had one in mind as you prepared to open your doors. Reaching the decision-makers is key, and speaking directly to a defined audience — parents — will help separate you from your general dentistry competitors. Why Are Demographics Important? Kids grow up, and adding new clients on a regular basis is necessary to sustain your practice for the long haul. Targeting your demographic can help reduce what you spend on generating leads to help grow your business. It can also help build customer loyalty and help you learn more about the needs of your customers. Using pediatric dental practices as an example again – they are in a unique position. An important component of your job is to educate the community on the benefits of seeing a specialized provider. As you know, tooth decay is one of the most common chronic health issues in children. Regular dental visits can increase school attendance, improve grades, and prevent future complications. Treating a specialized clientele allows you to hone your focus and improves your ability to provide quality care. Using demographics in your marketing efforts can help introduce children to dental care and allow you to provide parental support. My company, Our Town America, uses demographics to reach a unique market. We target new movers by sending them a welcome package filled with proven offers before they form loyalties with competitors. New mover marketing has proven to be a great tool for dental practices. One of the first things every new resident does is secure healthcare providers. Here are three ways to incorporate demographics into your pediatric dental practice – or any dental practice’s – marketing plan. Direct Mail Postcards. Even in the age of video calls, blue light glasses, and Twitter, direct mail continues to provide a tangible message that converts. The Data & Marketing Association reports direct mail receives a whopping 9% response rate. Every Door Direct Mail from the United States Postal Service allows you to blanket a neighborhood with your message. It also allows you to target specific zip codes, incomes, and household sizes. Your postcard can include a proven offer to help drive traffic or provide a QR code to prompt people to learn more about your practice online. Community Marketing. Weekends with young children include trips to the farmers market, tee-ball games, and other outdoor community events, preferably where a playground is involved. Pediatric dentists can go straight to the source and put a logo on it. Reach your target demographic by sponsoring a youth sports team, a local 5k charity run, or setting up a booth at the farmers market. Community marketing can amplify your message, allow you to engage with customers, and help create brand recognition. Content Marketing and SEO. Producing valuable content focusing on your target market’s interests and concerns is another way to reach your demographic. Learn what your audience searches for online and use those keywords to optimize your content and drive traffic to your website. Blogs and infographics will also serve as a tool to help educate your ideal customers on the value of pediatric dentistry. Targeting your ideal customer using demographic information takes some work up front but will pay off in the long run by helping keep your schedule fully booked. Brittany N. JohnsonBrittany is the head of Our Town America’s corporate marketing department. She specializes in digital and print media, social media, and public relations. […]

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