In any business, it is critical that you know who your ideal client is. Failing to know who your ideal client is often where entrepreneurs go wrong.
It is often a very transitional moment when business owners first discover who their ideal client is. Business owners operate their companies for years without truly knowing who their ideal audience is. This causes you to question why the sales process always remains so hard and why it never seems to flow.
It's not uncommon to hear, especially from service-based businesses, that what they offer "is suitable for everybody." This is where so many business owners fall flat; they have such a generic offer that it doesn't strongly capture the attention of anyone. Having a niche is key.
You may argue that this narrows your market and the number of suitable clients, but what it actually does is enable you to appeal to an audience that truly values what you do. The more you come to know your ideal client, the easier it will be for you to create content that speaks directly to them. You become a magnet. When a potential client feels like you "get them," your offer becomes so much more appealing.
So how can you identify your ideal target market and get to know them better?
1. Look At Your Current Client Base
Rather than take a wild guess, take some time to work out the people you currently work with. If there are certain people you don't enjoy working with, exclude them from your list. Take some time to look at their gender, age bracket, industry, location and income level. Ask them what drew them to working with you. This can quickly give you a good overview of "who your niche is."
2. Consider Their Current Habits
Digging a little deeper, ask yourself what is it that your ideal client reads. What do they Google? What information are they searching for? Where are they searching for this information? Do they use Android or Apple? Are they always on a mobile device or on a computer? Do they hang out on Facebook or on LinkedIn? By knowing where they are and what they are looking for, you are able to reach them easier.
3. Identify Their Goals
Knowing what your ideal client aspires to achieve can be key information for putting together suitable marketing content. If, for example, you are a fitness trainer who targets brides-to-be, knowing that your ideal client has a goal of dropping two dress sizes ahead of her big day will instantly appeal to her and have her listening to what you have to say.
4. Identify Their Fears
People often make a purchase for one of two reasons: They have a desire they would like to be fulfilled or they have a problem that they need to be solved. If you can identify a challenge your ideal client currently faces and "bridge the gap" from their problem to a solution, it's likely you will find yourself in high demand. For instance, if you find yourself feeling like you have aches and pains, you are likely to seek the services of a physical therapist. If you find your vehicle running low on fuel, you would visit a gas station in order to fill up.
5. Identify How They Make Their Buying Decisions
People make purchases in different ways. Some purchase impulsively. Some take the time to research, read reviews and look at alternative options within the market. It's important that you know the purchasing habits of your ideal client so you can ensure they have the right resources to make a purchase. If, for example, your ideal client purchases impulsively, ensure that you have a website that accepts most major credit cards. If your ideal client likes to research and gain assurance from other customers before they invest, then ensure you have an online platform where people can leave reviews and feedback. This will be key for your potential clients who are making a purchase decision.
6. Ask Yourself Who Would You Like To Work With
It may seem obvious but if you enjoy working with someone, the process is often much easier and the results obtained are often much better. You need to be excited about who you work with. If it doesn't excite you, then it will make your business unsustainable. If you could work with one demographic every day, who would that be? What would you help them do and what value could you deliver?
7. What Do They Need
If you run a Facebook advertisement targeting everyone the social platform can reach, I can guarantee the return on investment would be poor. If you are selling baby clothes and your advertisement is showing up on a 24-year-old single male's Facebook feed, the likelihood of making a sale is slim. If you already have a product or service, make a list of the reasons why people would need what you offer, including the changes it can provide in someone's life as opposed to just listing the features.
If your efforts are to serve everyone, you will actually end up serving no one. There are people out there who genuinely need and value what you offer and are ready to buy from you now.
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