Every business needs to understand their target market if they want to last, and healthcare practices are no different. There are certain characteristics about the people you serve that could be used to understand and serve them more effectively, which in turn improves your bottom line.
Identifying target market characteristics, however, can be difficult and time consuming. In this article, you’ll learn about different target market characteristics for healthcare digital marketing and how you can figure out what your prospects have in common.
What Are Target Market Characteristics?
Target market characteristics are important pieces of information about the group of people that you serve. They include information such as the following:
Demographics. Demographics are inherent characteristics of a group of people that describe them. These include:
- Race or ethnicity
- Education levels
- Income levels
- Mother tongue or native language
Psychographics. Psychographics are behavioral characteristics and include things like:
- Eating behaviors
- Exercise frequency
- Travel habits
- Work life
Target market characteristics help physicians and healthcare business owners understand the pressing issues affecting the community they serve. They also help them understand what needs are most present in the community. These pieces of information can influence marketing efforts, service offerings, and even skills that their staff need to have.
Tips for Identifying Your Target Market
Create customer avatars.
A customer avatar is a biographical description of a typical customer or patient. It’s a bit more in depth than simply listing characteristics. When coming up with a customer avatar, you want to fill in as many relevant details about the person’s life as possible.
Here’s an example for a bariatric clinic in Mexico:
Maria is a 35 year old Hispanic woman from San Diego, where XYZ practice is located. She’s married with two children and works as an insurance broker. Her husband is in the military and her children are just beginning elementary school. She’s been complaining about her body fat ever since she became a mother. She’s fairly active but exercise hasn’t helped her lose those last 20 pounds of weight.
Use publicly available information.
There’s a lot of information out there that’s publicly available. Demographic information can be found by looking at census data for your municipality or region. Behavioral information can be found by looking at statistics collected by universities and organizations. Some medical literature is publicly available and can be used to help understand your target market a little better.
Determine which behaviors best indicate a need for your services.
Demographics and general behavioral trends won’t be enough to determine who exactly your marketing messaging should target. Instead, you need to understand what kind of behaviors correlate well with needing your services. For example, obese patients who have tried to lose weight unsuccessfully may be more likely to be in the market for bariatric surgery than those who are simply concerned about their obesity.
Be careful with using this information in marketing, as using data that can be considered part of electronic medical records (EMR) is not compliant with HIPAA!
Sequence Health offers patient engagement solutions and marketing services for healthcare businesses such as healthcare SEO services. Learn more about healthcare digital marketing by Sequence Health!