Not everyone shops at Wal-Mart. Not everyone buys a Mini Cooper; despite the fact that I think it is the coolest car around. Not everybody dines at the Windsor Arms Hotel. Nor does everyone eat at MacDonald’s. And, believe it or not, not everybody wants to buy from you. Ouch, that hurts!
But wait! Read on …
There are still plenty of people who will buy from you. There are plenty of people who value what you do enough to pay for it. They want to buy from you; they love buying from you. These very smart people are called your Ideal Clients. And, there are plenty more of them out there.
You simply need to get a clear and accurate picture of who your current Ideal Clients are so you can focus all your marketing and sales efforts on attracting more of those people. Don’t waste your time and money trying to convert people who will never buy from you anyway.
The place to start is by taking a good hard look at “Who is currently writing you a cheque? Or, do they pay buy credit card”? J Get out your client list, identify your one or two Ideal Clients and start painting a detailed picture of them and their buying habits. There are more people like them out there; you just need to know who you are looking for so you can get in front of them.
Make this your opportunity to look really closely at those who have bought from you; they are a good indicator of who will buy from you in the future. Past performance is a great indicator of future performance. This is not an easy exercise. It will take a long time. But, it will bring you a huge return on investment of your time and money.
To kick-start the exercise, here are some initial questions to ask about your Ideal Client. They may seem irrelevant but they aren’t, trust me.
- Where do they live?
- Where do they work?
- How do they travel to work?
- What other outside services do they use?
- Are they male, female or neither?
- How old are they?
- What is their income?
- How did they come to be your clients?
- Are they married? With children?
- Gay? Straight?
- Professional? Blue Collar? Executive?
- What do they do in their spare time?
- What are they passionate about?
- What organizations do they belong to?
- How do they learn? Where do they go to learn?
- What do they eat? Where do they eat?
- Are they healthy?
- What do they read? Where do they read?
- How do they buy? Web? Shop?
- How do they pay?
- What do they value?
- What are they buying from you?
- Why are they buying from you?
- Do they belong to industry associations?
- Do they use Face Book or LinkedIn?
- Etc. etc.
Keep asking questions. Bring your team together to brainstorm. Explain to them how important this exercise is to the future of the business.
With a really clear picture of your Ideal Client you can focus all your marketing attention on them; the people who truly want to buy from you. You set the right marketing strategy to reach your Ideal Client. If they take the TTC you can advertise in the morning give away papers. If they attend industry association meetings you can speak to their group. If they have Smart Phones you need to have a mobile friendly website. And so on ….
Not everyone is your customer. In fact, not everyone SHOULD be your customer. So identify your Ideal Client to serve them better.
The best part is you’ll have way more fun working with people who really value the work you do, are happy to pay you for it and say thank you at the end.