Discovering your ideal client is one of the most important things in marketing today. Running marketing campaigns or writing blog posts hoping they will be relevant to your audience without identifying the details of your audience is a waste of resources. You need to understand exactly who you are marketing to.
The person that tries to work with everyone ends up working with no one.
It is really important to understand this. You really do not want to go out and market your business and pick up clients from every market space. That’s not how it has ever worked, and that’s not how it works today with Social Media. You need to be specific. Your objective for marketing needs to be singular.
I’m not suggesting that you dismiss everyone. I’m saying you need to identify specifically who it is that you want to work with.
Here are 10 questions you can ask yourself to help you identify who you want to work with; your ideal audience; your customer “avatar”. (Remember that you will have different types of people who will make up your ideal audience. A 40 year old woman with 2 children and who earns $250,000 per year may be as much a part of your ideal audience as a 17 year old millennial who makes less than five thousand bucks every month. If you have something to offer, both of them will require your service, the major difference would only lie in the amount of money involved.)
The 10 Questions
1. What is his (or her) job role?
People’s job roles determine a number of things like the level of expertise you can expect from them or their expected income. When a person’s income is in the 7-figure range, you should expect that person has more money to spend than someone who makes $50,000. An important point to keep in mind here is that a person who makes a lot of money isn’t automatically an ideal client.
2. What does his typical day look like?
Knowing how people’s typical days look like will help you know how to schedule your interaction so that both of you will benefit. If the time zone in your location is 12 hours behind that of a prospective client, you will need to think through the best time to have a discussion. In this case, you should be ready to take late night calls so that your client would take the same call in the morning.
3. What are the skills required for his job?
You should be interested in knowing what skill type is needed to get the job done. It will help you quickly decide if you should take up the job or if you should get someone else who can handle it. Decline the job if you have to. It’s better not to take up a job and have your reputation intact than to take up a job and have a disgruntled client to deal with.
4. Who does he report to or who reports to him?
If you are dealing with a corporate setup, you would want to get in contact with an individual that is at the top of the organization ladder – or someone that is very close to the top.
5. What industry does he work in?
This question will help you decide if the person you are dealing with will be a right fit for your business. The last thing you want is to offer a square hole to someone who has a round peg.
6. How big is the company he works for?
Big companies may have bigger pockets, but you might have to deal with more bureaucracy.
7. What does he think it means to be successful?
You shouldn’t be shocked to find out that a lot of people out there define success by how much they are able to make. While this is obviously important, you don’t want to work with someone who can sacrifice relationships and trust for money.
8. How does he learn about new information?
There are people who never make an effort to improve themselves. They are not interested in learning new information. They are closed minded. These people can be very difficult to work with. On the other hand, there are people that relish challenges and that see problems as an opportunity to learn something new. Those are the people you want to look for.
9. What blogs or news site does he read?
People that regularly update their knowledge by reading news sites and blogs will usually make good clients. If a prospective client is not interested in anything different from what he already knows, you might do yourself a world of good to stay away from such jobs.
10. What social networks and forums does he use?
Does the person hang out on Facebook or LinkedIn? Does he make use of Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest? You should try to find out. This will help you tailor your conversation so that the content you publish on each platform would be personal in nature. You don’t want to use the same style on all platforms.
When dealing with clients for the first time, I always get on a free call with them for 30 minutes to see where they are at the moment in their businesses. We can then chart a path together to supercharge their businesses. To schedule a free 30-minute strategy session with me click here. I’d be delighted to speak with you.