Smart business owners use the rifle approach when they’re clear about the niche they want to target with their marketing.

Here in the Ottawa Valley, we like to say that we embrace FIVE seasons each year: winter, spring, summer, fall and hunting!

If you’re a local, you know that come September through November most avid hunters book some time off and head into the woods to hunt for wild game. And every good hunter knows that one’s choice of firearm is based on the type of game they’re hoping to bag: shotguns for birds and smaller game; higher-powered rifles for deer, moose and bear.

In our family, target shooting has become a Thanksgiving tradition. We use smaller rifles to take aim at cedar shingles and empty cans, each marked with a bulls-eye. The person who gets the most hits inside the radiating target is the weekend champion!

Whether you’re hunting for wild game or taking aim at the Thanksgiving title, the principles of good hunting are not unlike the tactics all smart marketers use when implementing the best practices of targeted marketing.

The Shotgun Approach

If you’re aiming to appeal to a broad market of potential customers with variable traction, think about implementing the shotgun approach. You’ll fire a large number of smaller pellets over a wide area, often via more traditional out-of-home media such as billboards, newspaper and radio.

As experienced marketers, we would only suggest this at the open or top end of your marketing funnel. While the number of impressions you earn may be high, your conversion costs will be as well.

The Targetted Approach

Conversely, the rifle approach is ideal for focusing on specific, high-yield prospective customers via direct one-to-one social media strategies. Smart business owners use this approach when they’re clear about the niche they want to capture with their marketing.

Instead of mass advertising via shotgun marketing, the rifle approach is ideal for implementing strategies that target a clearly defined audience based on specific customer profiles such as modern moms, military personnel and do-it-yourselfers.

To avoid the more costly pitfalls of traditional media, targeted marketing plans integrate trending tools and tactics such as social media, search engine optimization and direct messaging. These engaging options very effectively close the gap between seller and buyer, thereby cultivating a direct path towards building customer loyalty.

When it comes to choosing the smartest marketing strategy — one that’s targeted and personal — the rifle approach provides better value for your dollar and higher levels of engagement compared to mass shotgun marketing.

It’s a given that customers are more likely to interact with messaging that reflects their seemingly unique needs and wants. The rifle approach makes it easier for businesses to connect directly with each customer on a personal level and build brand loyalty within their niche.

Happy hunting!

Photo: Shot this line of targets in our backyard at Thanksgiving.

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