Analysis: Current Target Market(s)

Examine in detail the organization’s current target market(s). Obviously to do this section correctly takes a great deal of customer-focused research. (Length: 2-3 pages).

1. Describe the target market approach:

  • What general strategy is used to reach targeted customers? In most cases approaches include:
    • mass market – aim to sell to a large broad market
    • segmentation approach – aim to selectively target one (niche) or more markets

2. Describe demographic/psychographic profile of the market:

  • Profile criteria may include:
    • gender, income, age, occupation, education, family life cycle, geographic region, lifestyle, attitudes, purchasing characteristics, etc.

3. Describe the following characteristics of targeted customers:

  • Needs/benefits sought by market
  • Product usage
    • Consider answers to these questions related to customers using the product such as:
      • who is using the product?
      • why do they use the product?
      • when do they use the product?
      • how is the product used?
  • Product positioning
    • Evaluate how customers perceive the product in relation to competitor’s products or to other solutions they use to solve their problems
  • Attitudes
    • What is the target market’s attitude regarding the organization’s product?
    • What is the target market’s attitude regarding the general product category?
      • i.e., exam the general attitude regarding how products from all competitors serve the target market’s needs

4. Describe the purchasing process:

  • How does the target market make their purchase?
    • What does the decision-making process involve?
    • What sources of information are sought?
    • What is a timeline for a purchase (e.g., impulse vs. extended decision-making)?
  • Who makes the purchase?
    • Does user purchase or is another party responsible (e.g., parent purchasing for children)?
  • Who or what may influence the purchase?

5. Provide market size estimates (keep in mind these are estimates for the market not for a specific product):

  • Provide size estimates for the potential market
    • What is the largest possible market if all buy?
  • Provide estimates of size for the current target market
    • What percent of the potential market actually purchased?
  • Provide estimates of future growth rates
    • At least through the time frame for the plan (e.g., 1 year) but most likely longer (e.g., 3-5 year projections)