Successful businesses know exactly who their target customers are. They strive to cater to specific and strategic customer needs. They focus on the most important customers to the business, and sometimes even refocus on a more lucrative target market. But it’s not uncommon for even successful businesses to become unfocused as they seek to grow by catering to a broadening spread of customer demands. And even with a conscious refocusing there are pitfalls; changing target customer isn’t easy and it doesn’t always go to plan.

Take the highly successful Australian retail hardware chain Bunnings, which dominates its regional market, with 330 trading locations across Australia and New Zealand. Its target customer is a man involved in do-it-yourself (DIY) building and repairs, or one working in a trade. This doesn’t mean that women aren’t catered for, they’re just not “core.” Bunnings’s key differentiator is price. Its advertising slogan, “lowest prices are just the beginning,” has been drilled into every Australian’s head.

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