The age of companies aiming at the mass market is coming to an end. Someone said, “Mass marketing is putting the product in the market, and going to mass on Sunday and praying someone buys it.”
Mass marketing requires developing a picture of the average customer. But averages are deceiving. If you have one foot in boiling water and another in ice water, on the average you’re comfortable. If you aim for the average, you will lose.
Today many companies are trying to sell products and services to the “small business market.” So they hire an ad agency to develop a mass market campaign to small businesses, with little success.
It would be better to focus on a speciﬁc industry or profession and to reach the corresponding small businesses through someone who has a standing in that industry or profession. Intuit Inc. sells its small business software programs not directly but by giving a sales commission to accountants who recommend Intuit’s software to small business clients.
Your company does not belong in any market where it can’t be the best. John Bogle, founder of the Vanguard mutual fund company, said, “We’ve never wanted to be the biggest, but the best.”
In choosing a market, remember: It is easier to sell to people with money than to people without money. And try to sell to users, not buyers.