I’m going to ask you a question… ‘Who is your business targeting?’ When you start out, the answer to that question might be ‘anyone who’ll pay me!’. But, taking that approach for too long and not defining your ideal client is going to leave you burned out and broke.
But, I get it.
Defining your target market can feel scary, like maybe you’ll leave money on the table by limiting who you market to.
But, in fact, it’s quite the opposite.
If you follow me on social media you’ll know that I’m kind of obsessed with knowing who your ideal client is. For me, it’s the secret sauce to powerful marketing that feels easy and converts.
As Forbes put it, ‘If You Try To Serve Everyone In Your Business, You'll Serve No One Well’. So, being more targeted on WHO your ideal client is, helps you understand HOW to serve them better.
And, it will make you more money too. Win, win!
Not sure where to start? Here are the four steps to discover your ideal client avatar:
How To Find Your Ideal Client In 4 Easy Steps
1. Look at you current services and client base to identify your target market
The easiest place to start is to look at the clients you already work with. Is there a common theme? For example, my business primarily serves women.
But we can look a little closer and divide that target market into niches. Perhaps some of the people you serve are B2B, while others are B2C?
If you offer several products or services, you can also list out each service offering into different segments.
2. Decide which segment or niche your want to focus on
Now it's time to narrow that down further by considering two questions.
1. Who do you enjoy working with the most?
We all have work in our business that 'lights us up' and other work that we do just to pay the bills.
Is there a niche or type of client that lets you do more of this enriching work than others?
2. Which niche has the best revenue/profit potential?
You’re in business to earn a living, so it’s worth considering which segment provides the best opportunity to charge well for your services.
Which niche do you find more straightforward to market and sell to? When marketing feels easy it’s bound to be more effective.
Take a look at the answers to these 2 questions. Hopefully, there’s an area of overlap that you can adopt as your target niche going forward.
3. Identify your ideal client profile in that niche
Now that you’ve identified a profitable, enjoyable niche, it’s time to nail down your ideal customer criteria.
- What are the demographics of your ideal customer?
- Where do they live?
- What character traits do they possess?
- Where do they hang out (both online and offline)?
- What interests them?
- What’s their socio-economic status?
It's worth taking the time to get detailed here so feel free to use my Ultimate Marketing Checklist with a comprehensive list to get under the skin of your ideal client.
You can even find a picture from a magazine, or a stock photo, that you think represents your ideal client. Pin it up somewhere you can easily see and then write ‘to’ that picture whenever you’re creating content for your business.
4. Put yourself in your ideal client's shoes to super-charge your marketing efforts
The marketing magic starts to happen when you go beyond WHO your ideal client is and consider HOW you can help them.
Here are 4 key areas to consider to help you get into your client’s head…
1. What are the fears and frustrations your ideal client has? Do they have wants and aspirations that your services can help them achieve?
It’s easy to find out what your ideal clients are struggling with and what they’re working towards.
Think about the questions you’re asked all the time or join Facebook Groups where your customers are hanging out and see what problems and goals are being discussed.
2. What words are your ideal clients using BEFORE working with you?
A powerful way to grab your audience’ attention is to use the same language they do when describing their pain points.
Try this Copyhacker tip to quickly find ‘voice of customer’ data.
3. Now brainstorm the words they may use AFTER working with you.
Gather all the testimonials you’ve had from satisfied clients. What language are they using to describe how you helped them move from point A, to point B?
4. Think about the blocks or objections your target market may have about using your services.
Is it time? Lack of knowledge your service exists? Fear of investing in themselves?
When you understand what the objections are, you can craft messaging to ease their concerns and help them say ‘yes’.
The key is to use this language about your target markets fears, aspirations and objections EVERY time you create content for your business - whether it’s social media posts, blog posts, emails, website copy or sales pages.
When You Know Who You're Selling To, It Becomes SO Much Easier
Hopefully, you can see how worthwhile it is to spend just a couple of hours defining your ideal client characteristics and putting yourself in their shoes.
The fact is, your ideal clients ALREADY understand and appreciate the value of what you do. So, you just need to get in front of them with the right messaging.
By utilising this powerful arsenal of words that you know speaks to your reader’s heart, they’ll start to wonder if you’ve been spying on them!
Feeling Stuck On Your Marketing?
Come and join us in my Facebook Group, Marketing Success for Small Business, where we share marketing successes and lessons to support and learn from other small business business owners.