05 Jun 5 Steps To Creating Your Ideal Client Profile
And Never Run Out of Leads
If you’ve started a business or you’ve been operating one for some time, you’ve likely spent a lot of time planning and building your business. A large part of that planning process involves—or should involve—deciding who will be on the receiving end of your products or services. Your products or services might appeal to a large group of people, but it doesn’t make sense to try to market to everyone.
You obviously want as many people as possible to know about your business. But the more potential clients you want to reach, the more time and money it’s going to cost to do so. The question is what makes someone a potential client.
The way we define potential client at Brandora’s Box is someone who is capable of becoming a purchaser of product and/or services from your business. By understanding your potential clients, those most likely to buy from your business, you can target your marketing campaign accordingly.
A key group of potential clients, is known as your target audience (also interchanged with target market), the group of people or entities who are most likely to buy from your company.
Defining a target audience might feel scary and limiting to you, but just remember that you’re not excluding anyone; you’re choosing where to spend your time and money. Selecting a target audience will help save you resources. Focusing on a portion of the people who might be interested in your products will allow you to communicate and engage with that segment more deeply.
Additionally, the terms clients and customers are often interchanged. We at Brandora’s Box make a big deal about the difference. The term “client” is used by us to refer to an ongoing business relationship. For example, a customer might walk into a store one time, choose a few items, and make a purchase before leaving. A client, on the other hand, may return repeatedly to make additional purchases and may establish a long-term relationship with your business.
Here We Go:
1.) Consult your business plan and/or clients.
Look at the goals and objectives you’ve set for your business and analyze the products and/or services you offer. Think about how your products or services satisfies a need or solve a problem for a potential client. Also, think about how you differ from your competitors (every business has a competitor even if they don’t know it) in your industry—what makes you stand out? Broadly think about who might be interested and who may benefit from having access to what you offer. Studying your selling point is the first step in identifying your ideal target audience.
Next, determine what information you need to know and why. What do you need to know about your potential clients in order to reach them?
As you scrutinize your business plan and decide who you want your audience to be, remember that it is ultimately about the client. Think about who you would like to sell to, and evaluate the products and services you offer. It is better to focus on who and change the products and services to accommodate the who.
The best source of information are your current customers. Look at your clients who have a relationship with you, also look at the people who just bought once and disappeared. What are they purchasing from you? How did they find you? Are they satisfied with your product or service? What made them pull the trigger to make the purchase. How are they consuming your products or services?
When Brandora’s Box first started, we were a website design firm. Over the years, we added graphic design, SEO, local SEO, and social media advertising because our clients requested these services. Today, we realized that our clients want a website that brings in traffic with potential clients and converts. This increases their profits and makes them happy. Now, we changed our business model into a digital growth firm in which we help our clients rapidly grow their profits.
2.) Begin researching.
Start with within your business. Look at your existing clients and see which ones you actually love working with. Look at the ones you want to spend time with. Send these clients surveys and do interviews with them. Also look at the clients you actually dread working with. This is the part where most of us drop the ball. It is extremely important to know who you don’t want to equally as. Here’s the criteria you should use to disqualify potential clients
- Purchasing Power- ability to afford you
- Authority – can make the final decision
- Timing – urgent need for your service
- Roles and Responsibilities- in position to determine the success or failure of the project
- Organization- size, revenue, market segment, geographical area, and etc.
- Needs- do they need your service
- Style- is it a good fit
Next look at secondary research. There are a lot of existing sources that can help you pull together information about your industry, the market, your competition, and the broad potential client you have already identified. The best part is that someone has already done the work and, in many cases, the information won’t cost you anything. The downside is that the information may not be focused in a manner that is 100% useful for your purposes. Nevertheless, it’s always a good idea to do some searching. You never know—the research you need may indeed exist.
Our internal research showed us that many of our clients needed marketing and growth strategies that would help their business scale quickly. Without that research we could not create products and services that would provide more value to our clients and make us more valuable to them. How valuable are you to your clients?
3.) Develop an ideal client profile.
After performing research, you’ll want to create an ideal client profile. This is more than a brief statement; it’s an in-depth description of who your ideal client may be and includes demographic and psychographic information:
Demographic information: This may include age, gender, location, ethnic background, marital status, income, and more.
Psychographic information: This type of information goes beyond the “external” and identifies more about a client’s psychology, interests, hobbies, values, attitudes behaviors, lifestyle, and more.
Both types of information are essential for developing your ideal client profile. Demographic information will help you identify the type of person who will potentially buy your products and services. Psychographic information goes one step further and nails down why that potential ideal client may buy.
We have 5 different ideal client profiles that speak to our 5 different audiences. One of our ideal clients profiles happens to be an African American woman business owner. We look at out client base and saw that African American women entrepreneurs accounted for 63.7% of our business.
BMW is a great brand that has built out their target audience ( they call it segmentation) and offer each group a different brand, such as the BMW, MINI, or Rolls-Royce. See their breakdown here.
4.) Find out where your audience is.
It’s not enough to just say who your target audience is. Find out which websites they visit and which social networks they most frequently check. Are they glued to their email? Are they addicted to apps? The information you put together for your client profile, combined with knowing where your audience hangs out online or how they use technology, will facilitate the delivery of your message.
We know where our audience is. More than likely if you’re reading this, you’re an African American woman entrepreneur. We made an effort to attract you from our headline, to where you most likely came across this article. The traffic source we use was specific to you. See, its like magic, and proof of how well this works.
5.) Monitor and evolve.
The work doesn’t end after you’ve identified your ideal client. It’s essential to continually perform research to stay current on market and industry trends and your competition. It’s also important to see if and how your current and potential clients evolve. Before you begin a new marketing campaign to your potential clients, make sure you know how you are going to track sales, interactions, requests for information, and more. All of these touch points are important to keep track of. This data will help you identify trends, patterns, and possible areas of growth, which will continually help your business be more profitable as it matures.
Click Below and download the Ideal Client Profile Worksheet and get started on taking your coaching business to the next level!