The gap between the desired target and the actual target.
I found it particularly interesting to ask myself about the subject of the marketing target. We’ve gone through the era when the product was at the center of attention, but this era (formerly, erstwhile) tends to change gradually, don’t you think? As far as I’m concerned, it’s obvious that we’re witnessing a growing “consumer-focus” or “user-focus”. The target (you, me, us. We can already feel the chemistry) is almost becoming the basis of product design, its starting point, and not the other way around. The dilemma however remains in the illusion of target a desired, ideal target, and finally collecting customers who are not in line with your presumptuous target dreams. Let’s dig deeper together!
User focus or all is fake?
Big title: DNVB. It was high time to discuss the success of DNVB (Digitally Native Vertical Brand) on this blog. Briefly, these are brands that were born on the Internet (#BigUp my parents) in the shell of chipped pieces of code and algorithms, and that do their business via e-commerce. Victims of their online success, some of them are opening physical stores to meet the untimely but well-founded demands of their customers, which is to deal with the brand IRL. This success is mainly due to colossal work on the target.
The user-focus was born. Applause.
In reality, it has always been present in marketing, but it is all the more studied, analyzed, and spied on today, especially on the digital level. We regularly question the target, we show empathy, we try by all means to identify its personality, its desires, and its obstacles to adhering to our brand. It is in this dynamic that DNVB thrives.
This dynamic of constantly collecting data in order to have a tangible basis for developing its product and being led to model it assiduously according to the requirements of its target.
Viviane Lipskier describes this trend very precisely in her book D.N.V.B.: Les surdouées du commerce digital. In any case, with massive competition, the consumer no longer knows where to stand. All the more so because with sharp marketing, all brands have viable arguments to make the purchase (or the casserole… I really have to go to the Gen Z for more contemporary expressions. Was it a french expression tho ?).
Loyalty techniques are blazing, but the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence…
It’s all about perception.
Let’s go back to our article’s title. This dichotomy between the ideal target and the real target who makes purchases from a retailer. What if the concern lies in a wrong approach to the market? What if, instead of going headlong into the realization of a product and then proposing it to a target that we considered legitimate for this purchase, we should not take the challenge in reverse?
Then, starting from an unsatisfied, latent or frustrated demand, to design your product.
With all these products swarming around us, there’s a good chance that the new disruptive-looking flagship product you’re thinking about is already on sale. The ideal would be to target a buoyant niche market with a target that may be very small but undoubtedly interested #market-fit.
In reality, the challenge lies in matching your ideal idea with the current market. Spoiler-alert: the e-learning market has been very much in vogue since the virus-that-must-not-be-named, it’s part of one of the reasons why I decided to get into it slowly but surely (I believe deeply in the pull marketing, so what?).
How can this dichotomy be remedied? The miracle recipe.
Admit that the title shines anyway. We’re here to talk about marketing, not to heat up waffles (but we do heat up expressions around here… Another french one #sorrynotsorry). I reassure you, I’m not going to leave you hungry. I’m trying to be a little fair play all the same. After… I’m not going to take any pincers, we know each other now.
1) It’s time to decrease your ego.
Therefore, let’s face it, sometimes you have to put your ego aside to solve your problems, and our problem today is this gap between the desired target and the real target. Let’s take a step back from the situation, with ego and emotions aside, to objectively make a decent and reasoned decision. Asking the right questions, including a strategic vision for the short and long term. Then we reincorporate the emotional (the ego will wait…).
2) Know your market better than anyone else.
The intention is therefore to keep a watch in order to gather purely objective information on the current market trends, its offer (future us or not future us?), and its demand (our dear target). Set up automatic curation tools: for my part, I use Feedly which puts me on the front page the news topics that I have carefully chosen and classified in different tables, but also social networks and a few apps including the New York Time and El Pais (yes, I’m from Madrid recently).
3) Remain objective in researching your target.
We learn about the real successes in vogue and not about the trends we would like them to be (I too would never have bet on the hand spinner buzz, okay). So, to close this gap, be empathetic and ask yourself honestly the questions that a product or service might answer. Collection of socio-demographic but also psychological data on your target to make it as authentic as possible. The final objective is to humanize it so that the people making up this persona can fully identify with it. In the end, the idea is to…
Draw a signposted route for a target considered to be the spearhead of contemporary business.
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