What can Waldo teach Marketers about Targeting?
When I was growing up, I used to spend hours in the library trying to find Waldo. I could get lost in the “Where’s Waldo?” books because the drawings are very engaging. I remember sitting in the children’s corner getting lost in the fantasy world created by each drawing.
Now that I am older, my job, as a marketing coordinator, is to define and target potential clients. The only problem is there are a lot of potential Waldos but only one Waldo. To say that another way, there are a lot of potential clients but only a few meet all the criteria. So, it becomes very important to define your target market.
If the books were titled “Find the guy in the red and white striped shirt” it would be very easy, but they are titled “Where’s Waldo?” The book gives a clear definition of Waldo and the reader must find Waldo. As a marketing coordinator, I must provided a clear definition of my target audience before I can find clients.
Wasting time on the wrong Waldo
One of the problems many marketers run into is wasting time on the “wrong” Waldo or potential client. I have 3 sisters and one brother and we often would search for Waldo together. We sometime would get into time wasting arguments over the wrong Waldo; one of us would claim we had found Waldo and the rest would waste time disproving the claim.
Wasting time on the “wrong” client is very similar to our childhood arguments. If you waste time trying to convince someone to buy your product but they were never in your market to begin with; you are not only wasting time but also money and opportunity. The quicker you can eliminate someone from your potential client list, the more time you will have for real clients. This is way it is extremely important to define your target market at the beginning of your project. Know your audience before you try selling “ice to an Eskimo.”
The importance of finding the right audience
Waldo can teach marketers about targeting in a variety of ways. First, one must be patient and clearly define their target market. It is easy to jump at the first client that appears to be your target but many times appearances can be deceiving, just because they are in your industry or your competitor has done business with them in the past, does not necessarily mean they are in your target market.
The second thing Waldo can teach marketers about targeting is perseverance. It is not easy to find Waldo and it is often times not easy to find new clients. But if you persevere, you will be able to find clients. Remember, finding and maintaining a client list is a lot of hard work that starts with clearly defining who, when, how, and where potential clients purchase your products or services.
What do you think Waldo can teach marketers about targeting?