Start Here November '21

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86 S T A R T H E R E 2 0 2 1 W hile many businesses have survived and even thrived during COVID-19, now isn't the time to relax. Instead, see this new year as an opportunity to dominate your niche market. Here are three main ways for you to become the go-to decorated apparel provider in your chosen markets. Know and Understand Your Buyer This point can't be overemphasized. Every other technique for dominating your market starts with you knowing your buyer better than they know themselves. To that end, follow these five steps: Learn as much as you can about your customers on a personal level. You need to know where they hang out, what magazines and newspapers they read, what websites they visit, what they like, and what their biggest problems are (the ones you can solve). All this demographic information will be valuable when it comes to buying ad space or sponsoring events. Once you know more about your target customer, you'll also have a better idea of what they can afford to spend and what types of decorated apparel and hard goods products they can use. This will ultimately inform your pricing decisions and help you choose what products to carry (or at least what items you should put a sales emphasis on). For example: If your niche market is fitness clubs, then your customers are athletes, members as well as instructors, and trainers. Even kids who come in with their parents to use the gym could be a potential customer base if the gym offers a kids' center. You need to gather as much information as you can about these different groups of people to develop a laser focus approach for marketing to them. Now that you know who your primary demographic is, explore their product needs. What type of apparel do they wear? If they are athletic, what kinds of water bottles or bags do they take with them to the gym? How do they like things decorated? To get to know your customers even better, regularly send out e-surveys or perform focus groups. This will give you insights into their biggest interests, current pain points, and other bits of data you'll want to gather. With this, you can tweak your offerings to fit their current needs. By "tweak your offerings," here's what we mean: Let's say your surveys show your customers are now focused on eco-friendly 3 Ways to Become a Go-To Decorator James Andres is the content manager for S&S Activewear. He is reachable via email at By James Andres Get to know your end-user better than they know themselves Go-To Decorator MARKET DOMINATION: Let's say your market research tells you customers are focused on eco-friendly apparel or sportswear. Reach out to your apparel suppliers to learn more about those garments and start stocking those items. (Image courtesy S&S Activewear)

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