How To Define Your Orthodontic Target Market in 5 Steps

Defining your target market is the first step to judicious marketing.  If you don’t know who you are trying to reach, you will waste tons (and tons) of marketing money!

So how do you determine and define who to target?

There are many different methods for defining your target market.  I find that the easiest and most useful way is to use a target market (TM) grid chart.  Below, I’ll help you put together your own TM grid chart.  It doesn’t need to be fancy, just handwritten and taped to the wall in your office.

If you have never put your target market in writing, do it now.  I guarantee you that if you put your target market in writing you will end up wasting less time making marketing decisions and ultimately, waste a LOT less on failed marketing projects.

Five Steps

  1. Identify your ideal decision-maker (this is your TM).  Ideally, this is an actual person in your practice that might represent the entire group.
  2. In the top left corner, start by defining the demographic characteristics of your TM.
    • Age
    • Sex
    • Marital status
    • Family characteristics and ages
    • Education
    • Work
    • Interests
    • What do they admire?
    • What do they dislike?
  3. Next, in the top right of the chart, detail your TM’s external pressures.
    • What do they feel pressured by society to do/think?
    • What do they feel pressured by society to not do/think?
    • What do they feel pressured by their peers to do/think?
    • What do they feel pressured by their peers to not do/think?
  4. In the bottom left of the chart, detail your TM’s internal aspirations.  Hint: These are likely to be related to the previous two quadrants.
    • What does your TM want out of life?
    • What are they seeking over the next year?
    • What are they seeking over the next 5 years?
    • What are they seeking over the next 20 years?
    • Also include (in a separate section) specific annoyances of your TM .   Likely these will be things impeding them from efficiently and effectively moving toward their aspirations.
  5. Next, in the bottom right of the chart, write down your TM “know and feel” factors.
    • What does your TM desire to help them with seeking their aspirations?
    • What does your TM think and feel when mulling over their aspirations and annoyances?
    • What does your TM want that helps them overcome their annoyances?
    • What specific statements would they make if they verbalized their wishes in regards to seeking their aspirations?

Bonus: Actually print a picture of your ideal customer.  Tape it in the center of your TM grid.  This will help make the grid “come to life.”

If you are having trouble finding a picture of the specific person, just search them on Facebook.

Here is an example of TM grids that should help you understand what the final product should look like.

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