Who is your ideal customer? Where do they live? What do they do? What are their hobbies?
I’ve met so many people who think that their product or service is ‘for everyone’ but the truth is, it isn’t. Not everyone wants or needs your product, which means that it’s really important to seek out the people who actually do.
If you take a look through your past customers, you might be able to discern patterns in their behaviour and demographic. Perhaps most of your customers are professional women with young children? Perhaps they are young single men with a passion for sport? Take a closer look for recurring patterns, and if you can’t find them consider reaching out to your mailing list or social media audience and asking them questions about their age, biological gender, interests, etc. so that you can refine your target audience and ensure that you really know who you are talking to through your marketing.
Once you’ve narrowed down your customer demographic, it’s time to build your client avatar. A client avatar (or ‘persona’) is a detailed profile of your ideal customer, and may feature things like:
- A specific name
- Their exact age
- Their location
- Their marital status
- Information about their family composition/household
- Their current job
- Their hobbies
- Their interests
- The things that worry them
- Certain personality traits (i.e. introvert/extrovert, etc.)
Here’s an example – I am presented (on a daily basis!) with adverts on social media for life insurance, and I really think that in a life insurance office somewhere in the UK there is a board with a big picture of my face on as their specific customer avatar… they’ve got my name, age, where I live, whether or not I have a mortgage, how many children I have, that I run my own business and that I, like every other mother on the planet, worry about my children and their futures. Because they know so much about me, the adverts they create and the content they write speaks directly to me. They know my worries and as a result can market to me effectively. If their customer avatar was a gentleman in their 80s, the content they wrote wouldn’t resonate with me in the same way, resulting in me deeming the content irrelevant and ‘switching off’ and disregarding their product.
As you can see, customer avatars can be incredibly useful when it comes to creating targeted and effective marketing. Not only does it allow you to speak to your ideal customer in a way that feels relevant and specific to them, but it also helps to ensure that you are on the right platform to start off with! Why invest dozens of hours per month on Instagram when your ideal customer is on Facebook, or vice versa? It’s obviously useful to keep up a profile on numerous platforms, as these can help with your website’s SEO and act as a useful shop window for your business. It can also prove beneficial if your customer avatar changes dramatically (and suddenly!), as you won’t have to build a new platform from scratch. Customers are fickle creatures, and are constantly growing and changing, so making sure that you revisit your avatar regularly (at least a couple of times a year) is a must if you want to stay relevant – and be heard amongst all of the other businesses vying for your customers attention! In the space of a few months, your customers worries may have changed (think of the Covid-19 lockdown as a clear example of an unpredictable and massive shift in consumer behaviour, for example), their preferred platform to engage with you may have shifted, etc. Keep an eye on your digital marketing engagement and reach statistics on your Social Media platforms, CRM and Google Analytics to identify shifting behaviour patterns and take action to reconsider your avatar before it dramatically shifts.
Have you got a client avatar (or two) for your business? If not, and you’d like help developing yours, please get in touch!