How To Identify And Segment Your Target Market For Your Start-Up Business


Calum Armstrong

Identifying your target market is one of the first fundamentals that a start-up business should undertake. Knowing your market and who you are targeting allows for key objectives and marketing strategies to be underlined as it enables for market research to be carried out to understand what your consumer’s needs and wants are.

There are a variety of factors to evaluate when establishing who your target audience. Firstly, it is vital to establish that a target market and target audience are different despite their similarities. A target market is a group of individuals with common characteristics whereas, a target audience consists of a specific group of consumers within the larger target market. In order to identify your target market it is crucial to identify what the main problem and needs your customers have and how you can meet these. A method many start-up businesses use to begin identifying their target market is by analysing who your competitors are targeting and evaluating whether this is specific to your business. In addition to this, it is vital to look for familiar characteristics amongst your customers to evaluate what goals you can set out for your business to achieve.


Overall, market research is fundamental in identifying your target market and the 3 clear ways of identifying your target market are:

-          Identifying the problem and needs of your consumers.

-          Focus on profiling your current customers and what they have in common.

-          Analyse who your competitors target and see whether this is applicable to your business.

After defining what your target market is, it is critical to begin segmenting your target market to fully meet their demands and achieve success. There are various ways of segmentation that can be used for your target market:

Demographic: This type of segmentation focuses on the demographics of your target market i.e. age, gender, income level, relationship status, location, education etc. This can be achieved by analysing data that you have gathered and identifying particular patterns. These types of segmentation are more specific to B2C whereas, a B2B business may focus on company size, industry and job function.

Psychographic: This segmentation places importance on psychological factors i.e. lifestyle, personality traits, values, attitudes, priorities, activities etc. Psychological segmentation are subjective and require research to understand as it cannot be easily identified.

Geographic: This hones in on targeting the consumer based on where they live. Looking at this deeper, this would focus on local, county, region, climate, and country. Once this is established then you can market your product/service into the desired groups to fully take control of your market.’

Behavioural: This type of segmentation requires you to know about your customer’s actions. Some of these include purchasing habits, spending habits, user status etc. This sort of segmentation can be understood from how the consumer interacts with your brand and other activities they do away from the brand.

Vivolution is a management consultancy in Glasgow with focus being placed on supporting companies who have aspirations of revolutionising the healthtech, fintech and digital industry. Read more about Vivolution help start up business here.