Product positioning and target market

I was in a meeting yesterday discussing about one of our hotels. The team told me that this hotel which is situated in a CBD area has a corporate business as a main target market. However, the hotel performance has not be good. And, I was explained that one of the reasons is because the corporate business in this area has dropped significantly in the past few years. It could be the case, or not.

This hotel was built and branded under an art theme. Originally, its rates were set higher than other hotels in the area because of its artistic differentiation. It didn’t work well so the rates had declined and the team took whatever markets they could find. The hotel lost its positioning.

Corporate marketing could be important. However, would they pay extra to stay at this hotel to have an artistic experience? I don’t think so. The problem is when the product positioning and the target market do not match, you struggle. The team need to figure out first on how to fix this mismatch. If not, they will struggle forever.


The 2 types of mass marketing

Are you happy with your marketing efforts? I am not. As a marketer, we are facing great challenges here. One of them is we have to overcome not only one mass marketing syndrome, there is another type of mass marketing now.

  1. Consumer sided mass marketing: this is the traditional definition that we just blast our marketing message to a large audience and hope something will stick.
  2. Competitor sided mass marketing: I throw this definition out there because this is a major challenge for us all. My point is we cannot do average work because there are so many competitors, so many people that do similar things as you do. In order words, your work is average in a sea of mass competition. If you fall into this syndrome, you chance of success is super slim.

Let’s start working towards a goal of doing things remarkable from today.


Customer personas

If you agree with the concept that we cannot do everything to everyone (because it’s a formula to be mediocre), you will need to understand your customer personas.

It’s the same concept as knowing your target market, except with customer personas, you make them like real life customers. You create personas and describe them as a (group) of person. For example, your product may target a group of young, working moms. You could name this group “Young Sarah”. Then, you come up with her descriptions. For example, the young Sarah has a busy husband who travel all the time. She works full time and also has to look after a one year old boy. They are a double income family. When you have her profile in mind like this, your campaigns and your messages will be specific for her. You are talking to her.

This concept is critically necessary for your marketing efforts. Unless you have unlimited resources, you will need to be clear on who your customers are.