Connecting and nurturing with your ideal customer is the lifeblood of all businesses. If you have what they desire and they identify with your brand, product and overall service, this is what keeps the money rolling in. But many businesses totally ignore this and this is one of the reasons that 50% of businesses will fail. That’s a sobering thought!
It’s so devastating to see when someone launches a brilliant service or product which they put all their soul, blood, sweat and tears, climbed mountains, swam across seas and traded their cat into the mix for when the product comes to market the scene is reminiscent of a budget western complete with tumbleweed and swinging saloon doors. I seriously want to shake them! Had they have done their homework properly they would literally be laughing all the way to the bank instead of crying into their pillow.
Doing your homework involves knowing intimately who buys from you, it is the cornerstone to your success as you will understand how to use your marketing to them. I don’t want to see you fail over something which can be easily avoided, so I will share how to research and how to identify your ideal customer.
To identify your customer, you need to know them as well as you know yourself, and this may naturally evolve and change over time so you will need to constantly revisit and keep on top of it. Now before you go into stalker mode and start to hang around outside their houses (that will get you arrested), think about your product or service and think carefully about who you are selling to. You need to get inside their head to understand what they think and feel about your product and where they are most likely to shop for it. It may seem like you are really looking into them and being creepy, but it’s the secret to success. When you start dating you want to know absolutely everything so the relationship will be a success and long-term, and you want to build that kind of relationship with your customer. Here are some questions you will need to consider and apply to the type of customer you want to target.
For those who did not grow up hanging around internet chatrooms on dial-up internet, this stands for ‘age, sex and location’. How old is your ideal customer, what gender are they and is there a specific location they are in? This may have a cultural effect if they live abroad. As well as this how much money do they earn? What type of job do they do and what type of qualifications do they typically hold? Have they just started a job or have they been in it for many years? What is their marital status and do they have children? Do they live alone or share with friends?
This is a bit deep, you want to know what causes them pain. Not in the physical sense unless you are marketing pain relief. But in their life, what affects them the most? It could be they have bad skin, they fear failure in their life, worried about their appearance, lack of money, constantly overwhelmed by too many choices of a particular product. If your product or service is already on the market, ask if there is anything that they don’t like about it and how could it be improved. These are the real sorrows and annoyances.
What do they want to become and aspire to be? It may very well be Justin Bieber but think about their goals, ambitions, dreams. In life are they wanting that holiday, house and car? To be healthy and slim? To be rich and successful?
Now you want to find out what makes them tick and what do they enjoy doing. Do they enjoy reading books, watching TV or browsing the internet; and when they do this what do they read or watch? Where do they like to hang out physically and where can they be found online? Do they enjoy a particular sport or support a team? Do they like cooking, animals, wine tasting or travelling? You get the drift.
How Your Product or Service Applies to Them
People mainly buy because it solves a solution to a problem. They want to smell good they buy perfume, or if they have children but need to work they invest in childcare. Think of all the benefits and the solutions Your product offers to your ideal audience keeping in mind any objections they may have to it. You want to make it as attractive as possible.
When you bring all these 5 points together, you will now begin to build a clearer picture of how to visualise your target audience; who they are and what they do, their main life focus, the issues they have and help lead you to answer the questions on how to apply your product into something they actually find useful and will buy.
The easiest way to mine for this information is to ask! Go out there and ask your current customers or people you would like to sell to in the future. Ask why do they buy from you and what would make them consider you in the future? People LOVE talking about themselves, most will be only too happy to comply!
This exercise lays the foundation to what forms a highly successful digital marketing strategy that will ensure you meet and exceed your profits but is only part of the process. Developing a marketing strategy, It takes time, work and due diligence, but get the basics right and the rest becomes easier.