In building your Network Marketing business, it is critical to know exactly who your target market is. Clearly defining your target market with upfront research should always be your first step in planning for your Network Marketing business.

These are several key questions to ask yourself when doing your research.

Here’s a short list that should get you going:

* What is the demographic of your customers? e.g. income level, gender, education, age, marital status
* Do they have a specific location? e.g. country, state, city, county
* What do they want?
* What are their key problems?
* What do they currently buy?

Once you clearly define who your potential customers are, you can begin to set up your marketing strategies around them. But until you do, you should not even consider starting your Network Marketing business (or any kind of business).

People so often come up with their product which, in their eyes, are superior in quality, and then start looking for customers who can benefit from the use of this product. When people take this approach, they are at the risk of investing a lot upfront to come up with the products to sell while not really knowing whether they will sell.

While searching for the customers, they will need to store their inventories so that they can ship the products quickly as soon as they find the customers. This causes them to incur unnecessary expenses for storage and possibly lose their initial investment if they can’t find the customers to buy them.

If you can first spot a group of people who has a specific want, need, or problem they want a solution for, and then come up with the exact things they are looking for, it makes things so much easier with much less risk.

Here are a few examples:

* Starbucks ==> coffee drinkers
* Borders ==> book lovers
* Eye doctors ==> people with poor vision

Each of the above has a specific group of people who has specific wants, needs and problems they want a solution for. It wouldn’t have been wise for Starbucks to come up with the best tasting coffee without knowing whether there’s enough people who can and will spend $3 bucks for a cup of joe.

Now, when it comes to target markets for your Network Marketing business, there are several possible categories depending on your approach. Here’s a list of possible target markets:

* People who have purchased a network marketing opportunity before (or who are already in network marketing, who are currently spending money on pursuing a home based network marketing business), who already recognize their need for a network marketing business.

* People who are presently researching your Network Marketing company and seeking the best sponsor, team and upline on Google, Yahoo, MSN or even offline talking to people. These people have heard of the Network Marketing company, products, marketing system, and/or business opportunity, and are doing their “homework” to validate the information about the company, products, marketing system, and/or business opportunity and the best team to join.

* People interested in finding a way to make money, but who aren’t specifically aware that they need a Network Marketing business (yet). These people are looking in your direction with obvious interests, but are still in the “tire-kicking” stage. Until they actually spend money by starting a home based business, or invest money in learning resources (books, CDs, DVDs, seminars), they are just looking.

* People who already buy or use a related product or service of your Network Marketing company.

* People with a PROBLEM who are looking for a SOLUTION (e.g. PROBLEM = poor health; SOLUTION = high quality dietary supplements)

* People looking on the web for your specific product by name. These people are the hottest product leads.

Once you grasp which target market you want to attract to you, you simply need to start giving away valuable content that they are looking for through various point-of-contacts e.g. social networking sites, social bookmarking sites, etc.