While it may initially seem like a silly exercise, identifying your ideal customer is actually among the most important things you can do for your business. Why? Well, to be blunt, most people spend their time thinking about what they need or want, what their problems or goals are, and the things that they like - not what you want, need, or like.
As a result, you need to stop thinking about what you want and instead take the time to think about who will want your products/services, and who will care about what you have to say. Then, you can more easily align your marketing efforts towards those people, increasing the likelihood that the right people will see you and your business, resulting in connections and sales.
Below, I walk you through the basic steps to develop your ideal customer profile. After you’ve reviewed those, don’t forget to get in touch with me and grab your FREE Step-by-Step Guide to Building Your Ideal Customer Profile!
1. Really Look At Your Products
In order to identify your ideal customer you first need to look at the products or services that you offer. What benefits do they provide the end user? What problems do they solve for that person?
2. Who Does Your Product Help?
Take a look at the list you just made and identify one or two main problems that your products or services solve or alleviate. Then, brainstorm who has those problems or would be interested in your products or services.
3. Visualize ONE Person
Once you have a list of people that either have the problems your products/services alleviate, or who would otherwise be interested in your products/services, it’s time to dig deep and truly visualize ONE of those people and their persona, using two types of data: demographics and psychographics.
You may be wondering - why is she recommending that I only choose ONE of the people/types of people from my list? Simply, to do otherwise would be to focus on your ideal market, or perhaps even niche. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with focusing on your ideal market/niche, but until you do dig deeper, you’re missing those little extra pieces of information that can make a world of difference in your marketing efforts, and ultimately business success! Not sold yet? Let’s explore some reasons why this extra information is important.
If you know what your ideal customer is interested in, you are one step closer to figuring out where to find him/her online.
Knowing your ideal customer’s values means that you have an understanding of how to build trust with him/her. Without a doubt, showcasing a consistent brand helps to establish trust; depending upon your niche, though, there are countless other ways to build that trust, and you’ll only be able to figure out what those ways are by knowing who your customer truly is.
Another offshoot of understanding your ideal customer’s values is that it’s not worth your time to try to sell your product/service to someone who just doesn’t care about it! So, figure out what your ideal customer cares about and then determine how your products/services fit into that.
Now that we have that out of the way, let’s explore the type of information you are looking for! Note that the prompts listed below are only a starting point; don’t stop with the answers to just those items!
Demographics (aka “the basic facts”):
- Marital Status
- Does s/he have any children?
- What about Pets?
Psychographics (aka “digging deep”):
- What Books and Magazines do they read?
- Does s/he have any specific current life events going on?
- Favorite clothing style
- Favorite movies, food, music, etc.
- Best travel experiences/wishes
- Personal values
4. Give it a Face & Name
Finally - name your ideal customer and give him/her a face. I know, I know, this sounds ridiculous. BUT, it also humanizes all of that data you just compiled, making you more likely to remember it and think about that ideal customer every time you get ready to post to social media, create a new graphic, etc.
Don’t forget — whenever you are getting ready to publish a new post, offer a new freebie, etc., ask yourself: “Will [name of your ideal customer] like this?”