Where does your target market ‘hang out’?

by Charlie Lawson on July 3, 2013 · 1 comment

Part 2: Being Specific, Business to Consumer

 In the first part of this three part blog series, we looked at how easy it is to be specific when asking for referral requests when you sell your product or service to businesses.  You can read Part 1 here, but in this article, we’ll be focussing on a very common question I hear from networkers everywhere.  Take this example, from Roger, an osteopath:

‘I get how being specific is possible when asking for a business – you just pick a business.  But what about me?  Literally anyone is a potential customer for me – everyone has a back!’

However if you were to ask a room of people for referrals by saying – ‘a good referral for me is anyone with a back’ – it’s clear that you wouldn’t be receiving many referrals.  In addition, if Roger was to be truly specific and literally name one person he’d like to do business with, he might say ‘Mrs Baker, 22 Murray Road’ – but that’s too specific, and in the case of some business to consumer businesses, runs the risk of breaking client confidentiality.

But there is a better way.  In much the same way as business to business – I just asked Roger a bit about his current clients.  Who was his best current client?  He told me that he’d done a lot of work with a rugby player, who’d suffered a string of niggling back injuries from being in the scrum on the rugby field.

I then put two questions to Roger:

  1. Would you like more clients like this one?  The answer was a resounding yes.
  1. So, where do people like this ‘hang out’?   In other words, could you set up a situation where someone refers you to a stream of end users?

In Roger’s case – it’s not too hard to work out where to find more rugby players.  All he had to do then was name a specific rugby club (Uxbridge Rugby Club), and who in the rugby club (Simon Wade, the Chairman) would be a good referral for him.


So – as an action point – think about a good current client.  What sort of person are they?  Then think where do they ‘hang out’?   It may be they can be found in a certain place, as Roger found, or perhaps you’ll need to build relationships with a particular person who knows the sort of people you’d like to do business with.  For example, if you want to talk to people who live in a big house – consider who might know those people.  A financial advisor maybe, or an estate agent?

Once you’ve worked out where your target market ‘hang out’ – treat the introducer as the referral request, not the end user.  That way, being specific is easy.


Charlie Lawson
Charlie Lawson – BNI National Director and Word of Mouth marketing expert, whose passion is to see BNI members succeed in their businesses.



{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Gerry Grant July 4, 2013 at 15:32

I really don’t know why more people don’t do this. It really is a simple way to help find more referrals. Driving Instructors and Mortgage Brokers are classic examples of people who could use this way of being more specific.


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