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Marketing Mojo: Stay on Target

Recently, I've noticed a lot of consumers reacting and fighting back against campaigns that sent the wrong message.  I read an article today about a Huggies Diapers commercial that showed a group of Dads being left to their own devices with their young children and the havoc that ensued. It was meant to show that Huggies are easy to use even if you're inexperienced, but for the growing number of stay-at-home, single, or equally responsible dads in Huggie's customer base, it felt like an insult. A lot of companies talk about "targeted marketing", but not everybody understands what that qualifier means.  What is the difference between marketing and targeted marketing?  The answer is in the question - a target.  A general marketing campaign might be designed to promote a new service or product, but a targeted marketing campaign focuses on a specific group or demographic, not the general public. When you purchase a list from a mailing house, there is a staggering amount of variables you can use to customize your list.  In addition to geographic areas or zip codes, you can narrow down your list by gender, income, age groups (including children), culture, or even in some cases, purchase habits. The New York Times recently did a fascinating article on Target's research and marketing development.  Target has created a research algorithm that helps the retailer target consumers at specific stages of life (namely pregnancy - the article focuses on the ability for Target to predict the likelihood of a customer being pregnant with an almost alarming accuracy).  To some, it might seem a little "Big Brother"-ish, but this is the future of marketing in our industry - being able to analyze our target consumers and find out how to best reach them in a way that is impacting and effective. I highly encourage everyone to read the article, and really think about what the implications are for modern business.  And while most of us don't have access to expensive research and development teams like Target has, we all have unique and diverse customers who deserve our attention and our respect. Interested in learning more about targeted marketing?  Have a great marketing story to share?  Leave us a comment, or email

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