Small-Business Success: Understanding Your Market

Small businesses don't always have the same advantages as larger corporations when it comes to knowing their markets and gaining traction. While you may have an idea of what your goals are, getting there may take a lot more research and prospecting in comparison to bigger fish in the pond. Of course, the upside is having the opportunity to be able to find your own niche, but the larger picture for your business needs to be addressed.

Understanding What Business You're In

  • Before everything else, understanding your industry is at the base of the stages of building your business.
  • Start off by getting to know who your customers are and what exact problem you're looking to solve for them.
  • Taking it a step further, understand the importance of your place in the world as a small business and learn how to use that to your advantage.
  • Studies on the importance of small businesses have shown that they play a major role in the American economy.
  • Knowing that should allow you to feel more empowered to fully invest yourself in your market, knowing that you are making a difference.

Market Research

  • The major backbone of every small business is serving the target market, which makes marketing research a key to success.
  • When doing marketing research, you're not only looking at the bigger picture of what problem your product will solve but at the intricate details of who needs it the most.
  • One of the most powerful ways to conduct market research is through social media.
  • Another way of identifying your target audience is by using the funnel approach along with your personal network.
  • There are myriad ways to do marketing research, but the most important thing to know is that it's a must for your business's success.

Creating a Target Market Statement

  • Creating a target market positioning statement is taking your market research to the next level and putting it into a description to sell to your prospects.
  • A target marketing statement also narrows down the demographics you are targeting, making your goals more organized and simple.
  • Your target marketing statement defines who you're targeting before you reach a broader audience.
  • Your statement also defines the preliminary message before beginning your ad campaigns and marketing development.

Looking Into Your Competitors

  • Because you'll be a small fish in a big pond starting off, getting to know the way another fish swims will help you better understand how to work toward success.
  • In order to understand your competitors, you need to know what makes you similar and where you can narrow down the differences.
  • Marketing your differences and what gives you an advantage over the other businesses in your space can help you beat your competition and gain more business.
  • Another great way to use your competition to your advantage is to go to seminars and expos that specialize in your field so you can stay on top of the trends and keep evolving.

Testing Ads

  • Thanks to the power of social media, your small business has the advantage of using new platforms to get your message across through advertising and promotion.
  • Creating the right advertisement is crucial to your business's success because it is what gets your message across and captures the eye of your target audience.
  • Before running a promotion, you'll need to test your ad to evaluate its potential success so you don't waste your time and money.
  • After creating your ad and testing it, running the campaign and seeing the end result will help you see what your strengths are and where you can improve.

Be Hands-On

  • At the end of the day, your business can't succeed without your full attention and input, so being hands-on is important.
  • Should you need help in starting your own business, there are resources available to help you gain a stronger grasp of your goals and strategies for success.
  • Getting to know these resources can also help you ease your way into growing your small business into a powerhouse.
  • Keeping in touch with your customers and gaining feedback will help you gain firsthand insight into what you could improve on to better your customers' experience.
  • Investing not only your money but time and care into your business is what will pull you through the finish line and yield the success you're hoping to gain.