January 22, 2021
A process highlight that summarises the basics of the three-step STP (segmentation, targeting, positioning) marketing model.
It’s clear by now that there’s no “one way” of marketing one brand’s services or products. All of marketing is a combination of so many techniques drawn to attract different groups of market or customers, allowing brands and organisations to sell and find their footing in the whole marketing schema.
Any marketing endeavour wouldn’t be complete without a consideration of the market. What their needs are, how they want their needs to be filled, and what product ideally responds to these needs. Asking these questions allow brands and organisations to identify their most valuable market segment and sell to them. Things would always refer back to how effective you’ve crafted your product to the market’s needs and deliver their actual expectations.
So, for this article, we look at one of the most effective marketing approaches that highlights three specific processes: segmentation, targeting, and positioning.
Remember, there’s no one way of marketing. Effective marketing’s no longer concerned with the “one size fits all” approach but is more interested with understanding what differentiates various market groups from one another. And this is where segmentation comes in.
Segmentation refers to the process of “grouping or dividing customers based on a given set of criteria”. The idea behind this is this: since these customer or market groups share the same set of characteristics, they are more likely to act in a certain way and respond to targeted marketing initiatives.
Segmenting your market would include a consideration of the things that separates one group from another, primarily in terms of these criteria:
What segmentation does is it helps an organisation or brand narrow down groups of potential customers and understand each group’s characteristics and concerns. After all, you can’t expect to provide your service to everyone. What you can do instead is make sure you deliver your best to the group that you have a greater chance of servicing. Segmentation doesn't stop after you’ve properly divided your groups based on the aforementioned characteristics; segmenting your groups and analysing these groups’ specific quirks and peculiarities will give you the insight that you need to finally choose which, among these groups, is your ideal market.
When you are no longer weighed down by those groups that you don’t intend to service (or market groups you don’t really see engaging with your products), you could start targeting your ideal customers. Targeting is the actual process of choosing or determining which group, among those you’ve segmented, has a greater chance of engaging with your brand and focusing your marketing efforts to them.
When targeting your ideal customers, you must also assess some things, such as that group’s size and capability for growth, their profitability, and your own ability to service them given the nature of your business, as well as a consideration of your resources.
From here on out, you must focus on this group alone and disregard the groups outside that radar. Not only will this help you market your products better, but also help you invest your marketing budget wisely, targeting only the group that’s more likely to help your brand yield better returns in the long run.
Finally, we get to positioning. In this last step, the focus will be on your products and services. Positioning means making your product stand-out from your competitors in a way that it appeals to your chosen market group. This last step is crucial and helps you establish your value to customers. When done right, it will result to them choosing you over your competition.
When you position your product, you must determine your unique selling proposition (USP): What’s with your product or service that makes you a better choice for customers than your competition? Lay out to customers whatever’s special with your brand and how you alone can provide them with the greatest possible value for their buck.
Lastly, positioning includes an examination of the marketing path you should follow, plus a focus on the best way to promote and advertise it. Promoting your products will include an emphasis on your strengths, crafting a marketing message that is aided by your customer’s characteristics, and personalising your messaging to attract and suit your chosen market group better.
The STP marketing model is a three-pronged approach used to identify not only your brand’s most valuable market segment, but also the marketing strategies you can employ to get to them. To be effective, all these parts must work together. Each one must align with the others in order to ensure a more fluid and seamless plan for your brand.