The way a business refers to the group of people they are marketing to says a lot to me about their focus as a business. Most companies refer to that group of people as either their “Target Audience”, or their “Target Market”.
The difference may seem subtle, but they speak volumes about your business.
Dictionary.com defines “audience” as: “the group of spectators at a public event; listeners or viewers collectively, as in attendance at a theater or concert”. Audience is about entertainment.
Dictionary.com defines “market” as: “a meeting of people for selling and buying”. Market is about selling things to people.
The difference may seem minuscule, but the viewpoint of your business is very clear. When you aim to entertain, to please, to make people happy, and such, your product isn’t about making money, but rather, bringing that enjoyment to those people, and the money just allows you to keep doing that. Some companies are phenomenal at this viewpoint.
When you have a “target market”, you aim to sell your product to as many people as possible. What you do is about you and making yourself money. Companies like this focus their efforts in sales only, not in attempting to meet your needs. it makes me think of a crowded market where everyone is shouting for your attention to get you to buy something, they’re pushy.
I think by now it’s obvious which method of selling I think works best. You should have a target audience, not a target market. If you can make people feel good about themselves, feel happier, they’ll keep coming back…