There is something much worse than having no customers. And that’s having the wrong ones.
When I first embarked on the entrepreneurial journey back in early 2016, not only did I have no idea of WHAT exactly I wanted to do, but I also didn’t know WHO I wanted to serve. And so, like many starting solopreneurs out there, I was desperately screaming at the world “Hire me, hire me!”, waiting for ANY bone to be thrown my way.
For over a year I was feeling pretty miserable landing graphic design jobs, editing brochures, searching for jobs on Upwork, making posters for industries that really didn’t excite me… until I understood that marketing myself as a “designer that can make all your ideas come true” wasn’t the way to go.
I needed to figure out WHO I wanted to be working with and make them hear me.
And hey, I get it. When you’re just starting out, you need some time to figure out what exactly is your niche, your offering… and your client. But too often I meet business owners that, months into their venture, still do not have clarity on who they are serving and can’t answer a simple question: “So, who’s your client?”
And guess what? Everyone isn’t an answer. You can’t serve everyone. You can’t please every single person out there and make everyone happy. It’s just not possible. And the main problem with trying to get everyone to listen… is that you end up not being heard.
If you’re a business owner, or even if you’re just starting out, I’m 99% certain that you’ve given some thought into who your target market is.
Your Ideal Client is part of that target market; it’s your perfect customer. It’s basically a fictional character but with very real needs; someone who is almost definitely likely to buy from you or to work with you. It’s also someone that you love working with and you’re confident they will become a loyal customer and brand ambassador. Sounds pretty awesome, right?
Technically…. no. But I cannot stress enough the importance of knowing exactly who you’re serving. By not having clarity of who your ideal client is, you’ll most likely struggle with creating a trustworthy connection with your audience and lack direction with your branded content.
At the end of the day, if you don’t know who you’re talking to… how will you know what to say? By having a clear understanding of who you ideal client is, you can focus your messaging and offering to them, rather than screaming into a megaphone in the hope for the whole world to hear.
So don’t be afraid to narrow it down to just one person. By being laser-focused on your ideal client’s needs and wants, you’ll be able to attract a much larger audience that resonates with your avatar.
There are many resources out there that help you create your ideal client avatar, but one thing I realised is that your avatar ends up being either a reflection of yourself or just a tad too fictional. In other words, it really doesn’t reflect that person that is longing for your product or service. The secret to an ideal client avatar that truly connects and converts is to put yourself in their shoes and dig beyond their demographics like most people do. In fact, I take it a step further and really look into their goals, values, challenges, and psychographics to create an avatar that I can connect with on different levels.
I’ve prepared a worksheet for you so that you can create a thorough client avatar in your own time. You can grab it at the end of this post!
When you first start drafting your Ideal Client Avatar, the first logical step is to focus on their demographics.
Here are 10 basic questions to start with:
Now let’s think about your ideal client’s personal traits. Looks and facts are a good way to start, but you want to truly understand your ideal client if you want to connect with them on a personal level.
You know how sometimes you strongly connect with someone who likes the same books, movies or songs as you? That’s why it’s important to understand your IC’s hobbies and interests to create that same sort of connection through your content and offerings.
Here are some ideas for you, but feel free to go beyond this:
This next part is where things get reeeeally interesting. To answer the next prompts, I want you to actually put yourself in your ideal client’s shoes and answer them from their point of view, not yours.
Once you have taken the time to go through all the above questions (pssst, remember I got a free worksheet for y’all) you should be VERY clear on who your ideal client is and what you can do for them. Remember: Now every time you put out any type of brand communication out there (marketing materials, newsletter, social media, online ads, special offers etc) always keep your ideal client in mind. You shouldn’t be talking to people, you should be talking to that one person that is listening.
Good luck my friend and, as always, brand on!