I recently had a prospective startup client approach me asking for help launching their new SaaS.
After running through what they were building, I asked them:
“So who is this for? Who’s your target audience?”
I bet you can guess what they said…
The problem with talking to everyone, of course, is that in the end you’re talking to no one.
So we sat down and worked through the available research to identify who their solution will most appeal to – who’s most likely to use it.
I’m a firm believer in the follower strategy. It’s been done time and again by huge global companies around the world.
Think Facebook – started with uni students, extended to other unis, then friends, then family, then businesses jumped in to talk to their audience where they were.
Google – started with the early online tech-friendly folk, expanded as internet access grew, then businesses jumped in when they realised that’s how people had started to find things.
PayPal – started with people sending money to friends, moved to people buying items from each other, then businesses jumped in and said “Well, if you’re paying that way anyway…”
For some businesses, the audience actually does become “everyone”, but you need to still keep your messaging targeted to just one group at a time. And that’s particularly important in the early days when you just need to get traction.