Are you fishing (marketing) with the wrong bait?


“The worm has to taste good to the fish, not the fisherman.”

~ Bernd Osterloh Volkswagen

That makes perfect sense when discussing worms but what about your company’s marketing efforts?  Are product ads designed to connect with the marketing manager or owner of the company?  Are ads running in media/publications/Websites that appeal to the management team?  This may not be effective use of your marketing budget.

There are five criteria for successful market segmentation:

  1. Identifiable and Measurable – Characteristics of the segment should be easily identifiable allowing the company to measure identifying characteristics including the segment size and buying power.
  2. Substantial – The segment must be large enough to generate the revenue/profits needed to make it viable for the company.
  3. Accessible – The segment must be able accessible to the company in terms of communicating and distribution.
  4. Responsive – The segment must respond to the company’s marketing efforts.  The segment should also respond differently than other market segments.
  5. Viable and Sustainable – The segment must be ready, willing, and able to conduct business with the company.  The market segment should also be sustainable over time allowing the company to effectively develop a marketing strategy.

Market segmentation is key to the success of most companies.  Companies should break their market into segments that may include individuals, institutions, or groups of individuals or institutions that have similar needs.

Once the company identifies the specific customer needs, they can design a marketing campaign that satisfies those needs.  This cannot be accomplished without a comprehensive understanding of their current and potential customers.  This includes the customer’s motivations, behaviors, needs, and wants.  From this list of market segments, the company can determine which market segment is most likely to buy their product.  This is their primary target market.

Until a company has selected and analyzed their target market, they cannot make effective decisions regarding other elements of their marketing strategy.

  • Carl Hadden

    Associate Director, Florida SBDC at USF, Polk County

    Specialty: Market Research, Business Planning, Financial Analysis, Student Teams

    Carl Hadden is an Associate Director with the Florida SBDC at University of South Florida. Hadden leads a team of 12 business consultants who serve the 10-county Tampa Bay region. He is also a marketing specialist with experience in workforce development, sales, insurance, entrepreneurship and training. As general manager for a wireless phone retailer, Hadden directed the marketing, co-op advertising, purchasing, vendor relations, and human resources. He assisted in implementing a point of sales system for the wireless retailer to automate processes and minimize loss prevention. As a workforce professional, Hadden assisted McGee Auto Service & Tires to secure a partnership with the Polk County School District, which would allow mechanics to get additional training and resources to become ASE certified. He graduated from Leadership Lake Wales Class 13 in 2009. Hadden has an associate’s degree in business administration from Polk State College and a bachelor’s in marketing management from Webber International University. He is also a Certified Marketing Executive, TTI DISC Certified Professional Behavioral Analyst, TTI DISC Certified Professional Driving Forces Analyst, and a Certified LivePlan Expert Adviser.


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