We all know the customers we like working with. The ones who “get” what we offer and who value and pay for our products and services. So wouldn’t it make sense to find more of them? Wouldn’t it make sense to attract more of them to come to us? Shouldn’t all our marketing be directed towards finding those prospects and customers?
There’s an easy way to start – think about defining your “ideal customer” or Buyer Persona (you may also see it referred to as a Customer Avatar). Depending on your business, you might need more than one. You might be thinking – if I am too specific then I will miss out on all the other customers – but that’s not the point. You will still attract them too – possibly even more than before – but you really want to focus on those golden customers, that need little encouragement to spend their money with you, and focus your marketing on them.
Let’s look at the Wee Sticky Company* that makes jams and chutneys. How would they define their ideal customer or their Buyer Persona?
We will start off by thinking of some customers they have already:
Age: 35 – 45
Family: 2-3 children
That’s quite easy, but what about more detailed information – remember the closer you can define the exact characteristics of this customer, the better!
Job: are they employed, full-time or part-time, professional or less skilled?
Lifestyle: do they embrace healthy eating and exercise, will they favour locally-grown ingredients and locally-produced goods?
Challenges: they are probably cash-rich and time-poor
Research: where do they spend their online time – surfing in general, social media platforms used (you need to know where to “meet” your ideal customers!)
You get the drift! B2B is similar but would look at the industry the persona works in, their role etc. Consider spending some time questioning existing customers and prospects to get to the bottom of the profile of your best customer.
It helps if you give them a name, and I have even seen some people create a vision board with photos etc (this may depend on your business).
You may be resisting, thinking – but if I target women aged 35 in a tiny town in Scotland I am cutting off a huge number of potential customers? But in fact it doesn’t work like that. There is evidence to prove that the MORE laser-focused you are regarding your ideal customer, then the MORE customers you will attract. Think is it as messages passing by on the way to your ideal customer – there will be people who hear you speak, who read your blog, who look at your website who think “But that’s me!” And this is the point of “inbound marketing” – you are looking to attract customers to you, not “sell at” a bunch of people that aren’t your target market.
Depending on your business you may have more than one buyer persona – and that’s fine – but make sure your messaging at any one time is clearly directed at ONE of your personas.
In future blogs we will look at what to do with your personas but in the meantime, now you understand why they important, why don’t you have a go yourself – download the B2C and B2B templates and sample research questions. Of course if you have all this information in a CRM system then it should be easy to analyse the top industry sector, what the job roles are etc. for your top customers.
Download the workbook and have a go yourself!
*The Wee Sticky Company does not exist but what a great name if you wanted to start a jam company!