The Age of the “Target Market” is Over

The marketing term “Target Market” has been around since the dawn of advertising, and many marketing and business professionals are moving away from this term for a good reason. The problem does not stem from the concept itself. Obviously, you need to know to whom you want to sell your goods and services. You need to know what drives these people to make purchasing decisions, and the best way to appeal to them.

The problem stems from the mentality that birthed this phrase. Think about it. If someone is your “target” in this analogy, that means you are the shooter or the archer taking aim at your prey. Frankly, the modern consumer expects more from a business.

With the birth of the digital marketplace, consumers have more choices than ever before. With this vast world of choices, these consumers suddenly are able to provide extensive input about how they want to feel when making purchases. Do you think anyone wants to feel like they are being hunted by a crafty woodsman and that he or she is what’s for dinner?

Many forward-thinking marketing professionals and business owners are replacing the term “target market” with more collaborative phrases like “dream client” or “ideal customer.” I invite you to join them in dropping the hunting analogies from your marketing vocabulary.