A client told me that his wife often sends him to the store to buy groceries. Seems simple, right? But, there’s a hitch. She says “dairy,” when what she really wants is:
½ gallon 2% milk
1 pint whole milk
1 dozen eggs
1 lb. unsalted butter
If he comes home with just the milk, or only one kind of milk, and no eggs, he’s in trouble. Not knowing what groceries you really want can annoy your spouse, not knowing who your customers are can jeopardize your business.
When going shopping, you need a list of what you want to buy. When looking for customers, you need a list that describes your ideal customer.
To avoid problems at home (and at work), decide what you’re selling, what problem it solves, and who you want to sell it to.
Who are your ideal customers?
Can you describe them? Build a picture in your head. Are they companies? Consumers? What kind of people? Men? Women? Executives? Plumbers?
What problem do they have?
Poor replacement pipes? Accounting software that takes five hours to run payroll for 100 people?
How can you solve the problem?
A lightweight exhibit design that cuts shipping costs in half? A payroll system that runs the same report in 10 minutes?
Where are they?
Worldwide? Next door?
Can they afford your services?
Do they have money allocated to buy what you’re selling? Is your offer appealing to them? Does it save them time or money or both?
When you know who you’re looking for, and what they’re looking for, it will be much easier to find them, and find more of them.
(I gave this same advice to someone recently, telling him to focus on a niche. He took down his general marketing message, re-focused on a specific industry, added appropriate content and keywords, and his traffic went up!).
Unique perspective on this issue. I really liked visualizing your ideal customers. I think that should work brilliant, in helping you mold your product, clientele, strategy in the right direction.