In any business, regardless of what your business sells or provides to customers, you have to understand who your customers are. Identifying your ideal customer is an important task all businesses should complete. Without understanding who your ideal customer is, you cannot properly market your products. You also won’t know what other things you could offer that could benefit them.
Characteristics are Important in Identifying Your Ideal Customer
To start, you’ll want to make a list of the characteristics that make up your ideal customer. These characteristics are important in identifying your ideal customer because they help you understand who your ideal customer is and what is important to them. Understanding these will play a large part in how you strategize your marketing, product design, communications, etc. The characteristics you’ll want to consider are:
But how do you go about figuring out this information? There are a few ways you can try to gather this information. You can conduct customer surveys via mail or email. You can also participate in what’s called social listening when identifying your ideal customer. Social listening entails paying attention to what customers are saying about your business specifically, your industry, or businesses who offer similar products to yours. This will help you get an idea about not only demographics of your ideal customers, but their opinions about products like yours. What are they saying: do they love it or hate it? Have common issues with products like yours that you could overcome with your own product?
Create a Customer Persona When Identifying Your Ideal Customer
Once you’ve gathered enough information about your ideal customer, you should create what’s called a customer persona. This is a description of your ideal as if you were describing a real person. Here’s an example of a customer persona:
When constructing a customer persona, it can be helpful to use an actual photo of someone you feel depicts your ideal customer. Alternatively, you can try to sketch a picture yourself, so you can get it exactly the way you want it. This will help you visualize your ideal customer in a complete sense of who they are, how they look, what kind of clothes they choose to wear, etc. This can be more important than you’d think, since every aspect of what makes up a person can influence one another, so don’t overlook anything.
Pro Tip: The pickier you are about constructing your customer persona when identifying your ideal customer, the better your chances are at finding exactly who they are!
Identifying Your Ideal Customer is A Lot Like Dating
Wait, what? Identifying your ideal customer is like dating? It sounds weird, but it’s true! Think about it: when you are dating, you’re likely looking for ‘the one’ person you’ll form a long-lasting relationship with and when you’re identifying your ideal customer, you’re looking for ‘the one’ person who will be best served by your product and are most likely to buy it. Just like in dating, you need to be picky! You don’t want to just anyone, you want to pick the best person and go after them! This is why your customer persona is so important when identifying your customer because it will give you a clear picture of who you want to pursue.
Your Product Will Help You in Identifying Your Ideal Customer
If you’re feeling overwhelmed at the prospect of identifying your ideal customer at this point, don’t worry! Take a deep breath and think about your product. What problem(s) does it solve for the customer? How do customers use it? Understanding your product will help you in narrowing everything down to your ideal customer. Don’t be afraid to get deep into the weeds in this analysis of how people will use your product; it will help you immensely in identifying your ideal customer. Consider this example:
You sell private label skin care products, but not just any skin care products. Your products are special because they are hypoallergenic and cruelty-free (not tested on animals). Understanding these two attributes of your products alone have the power to greatly narrow down your ideal customer from women in general to women who prefer products that are good for sensitive skin and are not tested on animals. Your ideal customer would likely be a woman in her 30s-50s, doesn’t mind spending a little extra for products that align with her personal beliefs, and cater to her sensitive skin needs.
While this description would need to be defined further, it’s a great start. Narrowing down from here shouldn’t be too difficult through some research and surveying of customers already buying your products.
Identifying your ideal customer is vital to understanding who you should be marketing your products to. Without understanding who your ideal customer is, it will be much more difficult to make sales easily. By having a clear picture of who your products are most likely to be purchased by, you can then strategize how to reach them through your marketing efforts on social media and other advertisements. Don’t settle for anything less than the perfect customer for your business!