No matter how much effort you put into marketing your restaurant, if you don’t know who you are marketing to then you are likely to fail.

Identifying your target market is something that every business should do before they put together a marketing plan, as it can give you the basis to decide which approaches to take. But it isn’t as simple as picking a customer base. There are some important things to consider when defining and identifying your target market.

What do you offer?

Before you can work out who you are likely to appeal to as a restaurant, you first need to know who you are. This is relatively easy when you are in the food business, as you will often provide one type of food which ensures that you are clearly defined.

Paint a picture of who this is likely to appeal to

The next step is to think about who is going to want to eat with you. Does your menu and premises appeal to families, to young people, to older people or to everyone? Will people come to you for an afternoon meal, or are you the starting place for a big night out. Once you can paint a picture of the types of people you are going to appeal to, you can be on your way to identifying your target audience.

What value do you offer?

What makes you different from all the other restaurants in the local area? What can you give that they can’t? Once you have this in mind, then chances are that you are going to be able to take some steps towards making sure that you appeal to those people who are most likely to think of you as a great choice to eat at.

Check whether you are right

It is all very good thinking that you have your target audience clear. But what if it turns out, after marketing efforts that you were wrong? The best thing to do is to check whether or not you have actually got it right, by creating a small, test marketing campaign and see if it hits the spot. If it doesn’t, then not only might this mean that your marketing campaign isn’t quite right, but that you may not have the right audience in mind either.

You may find that your test marketing efforts really hit the mark. If they do, then you have got it right and this is the approach that you should take. Once you know your target audience and have them in mind, then this can be a huge benefit to your marketing. Not only can it make sure that you find the people who will want to come and visit you, but also make sure that you keep up the appeal and turn them into loyal, returning customers.