I’m no psychic, but I can tell you with shocking accuracy who my next Taekwon-Do student will be. But not in the way you are thinking. I may not know their name, but I can tell you about how much money they make, how many kids they have, how old their kids are, what neighborhood they live in, if they’re married or not, if they own their home or if they rent, if they work for someone or run their own business, if their kids go to private or public school, their fears and their desires.
How is this possible?
It’s no mystery. It’s something you’ve heard of, something you already have access to, yet it is often overlooked by business owners in all industries (especially Taekwon-Do instructors).
It’s possible to know all this about the next person who walks through your door with Target Marketing.
Before you roll your eyes and say to yourself that you’ve heard of this before, I promise you that what I share here goes beyond anything you’ve done to identify your target market.
We’ve all heard about defining your target market. There’s books, courses and coaching programs all over the place that teach you how to define your target market. But there’s an enormous lack of information regarding EFFECTIVELY applying that information to your marketing.
Nearly all the target market training available will help you define your ideal new Taekwon-Do student by creating an avatar of sorts that represents who you want to have training at your school. These programs and courses help you to discover the makeup of your ideal new students in great detail, far beyond just families with kids that live in your zip code.
In case you didn’t know, it’s possible to buy lists of people in your area that meet certain criteria… and you’d be amazed at how detailed you can get! Everything I listed in the first paragraph (and more!) can be used to create a profile of your perfect new Taekwon-Do student. And, the same companies that bundle all of that information will sell you a list, with contact information, of people that match your criteria.
***If you have not done this research yet for your Taekwon-Do school, stop reading here and get to work defining your target market and creating an avatar of the perfect new student you want to have walk through your door tomorrow!
What happens at this point, is that business owners take all this great information, identify what media would be best for advertising to these people and then they just start putting out their advertising. This is actually further than many business owners get and may even increase your response rate to your advertising. But, (and this is a BIG BUT) with access to all this information there is a whole other world of opportunity to be taken advantage of that is being missed here.
It’s one thing to get an ad with the benefits and features of what you offer in front of the people that you want. But imagine if the advertising you did could speak directly to, and offer solutions for they key problems that these people deal with? Or if your advertising could show them a path to attaining something that they truly desire?
Now that kind of advertising would get someone’s attention!
But how do you do that? For starters, you need to know that your target market research is INCOMPLETE!
My four step formula for target market research goes far beyond just finding out who your target market is and how to reach them.
Step 1 is identifying your Perfect Client (which we’ve already discussed).
Step 2 is identifying Their Key Problem. If your perfect client were having a personal conversation with you and you were someone the deeply trusted, how would they finish this sentence, “If I could just…” or “If only…”
You want the rest of that sentence to be something that disturbs them, something that keeps them lying awake at night, something touches them at their core.
This step will require some assuming on your part, but you don’t have to be perfect with this, you just need to be in the ball park. What I came up with as the key problem for my target market is:
“If I could just know that my kids will be safe, be successful and be confident in their lives, and be sure that I’m making the right decisions that will ensure their safety, success and confidence…”
See how that is something that a parent could lose sleep over? See how that is something a parent, who is committed to their kid’s success (which is all parents), would be deeply concerned and worried about? See how those concerns are all things that can be addressed by Taekwon-Do?
Step 3 is identifying 3-5 Associated Challenges with their Key Problem. This takes the work you just did in step 2 to the next level. Their key problem is a key problem for a reason, meaning there are challenges, worries and concerns that the perfect client has or deals with everyday that make the key problem a KEY PROBLEM! Your job is to put yourself in the position of your perfect client and come up with three to five associated challenges that your perfect client deals with. Again, I’ll share mine:
I’m not always there to be sure my child is safe.
I can’t control what happens when I’m not around.
I don’t know if what I’m doing is getting in the way of my child’s success or not.
I don’t know how to ensure my child’s success.
I don’t know how to develop my child’s confidence.
I work too much.
Ok… I had six. The number isn’t what is critical here. What matters here is you getting into the mind of your perfect client and recognizing what they are dealing with. Also, did you notice that almost all of those associated challenges can be impacted by putting their child in a Taekwon-Do program?
Finally, Step 4 is defining the Ultimate Transformation in sensory detail. This is where you create the results that your business will have for your perfect client. It’s very important that you don’t turn this into all of the things that you know they will get from your program. Rather, it needs to be what they deeply desire for themselves or their family that you know they will get and it all must be tied into their key problem and associated challenges.
It also must be written in first person, as if your perfect client was standing in the future, describing their life. For example:
Every time I look at my children and wonder about the future that lies ahead of them, I experience a sense of ease and peace, knowing the Taekwon-Do training that I am providing them with has all the tools they need to grow up confident, strong, successful and safe!
Now that we’ve gone through the four steps, you can see the difference. Before you would have just identified some basic character traits and demographics to do some advertising. By following my 4 step formula you have a much deeper understanding of who this person is, what they really care about and what they are dealing with in their life. And you have creating a solution for them that addresses something they deeply care about and struggle with.
It’s as if you already know who this person is! (imagine that?)
In your next ad you could use the Key Problem to come up with a great attention getting headline, list features and benefits that specifically address the Associated Challenges they face, and use the Ultimate Transformation to create an irresistible offer!
About the Author:
Senior Instructor – Karstadt Taekwon-Do
Mr. Karstadt is the founder of 1 TKD Consulting and owns the longest running ITF Taekwon-Do school in Arizona, Karstadt Taekwon-Do in Phoenix, AZ with his father Master David Karstadt. He has been training since 1984, earned his Black Belt at the age of 8 and is currently an internationally renown intstructor teaching the culture, discipline, leadership and business skills of Taekwon-Do in classes and seminars to Instructors around the world. He has been a member of eight U.S. Taekwon-Do Teams and has traveled to 14 different countries competing in Taekwon-Do. He has won numerous medals at the World Championships and in international competition, most notably winning the 2004 World Championships in South Korea with two gold medals and the Men’s Team All Around Trophy. Mr. Karstadt currently resides in uptown Phoenix, Arizona with his wife and three children. Mr. Karstadt can be contacted by e-mail at email@example.com