Put your hands up if you're a business owner who's pretty sure their product or service or offering is something that virtually anyone could use. Okay, okay. I see a few hands up. You should know, my hand used to be up, and every so often, when I get so darn excited about a new project, my hand totally shoots up as I jump onto Facebook and start talking to everyone and everybody about how they could totally pick up what I'm putting down.
Let's take a minute to think about that. Imagine you're me, and you open up the dreaded Facebook ads section and start in, then when you come to the reach, you're thinking, the bigger the better. The entire world should totally hop on this train. This train is heading places. Two days later, that train is still on some sort of track to Nowheresville. Population, zero. And the odd friend is clicking through, but ultimately, there are no buyers of your wonderful product.
However, in one of my alternate universes, (yes, I subscribe to that theory - there's got to be a hope that in some other universe, I'm making better and smarter choices) the same me grabs a pen and paper and starts to create the absolute perfect person that I know, in my heart of hearts, needs this product. Inside this fictional person, there are hopes, dreams, aspirations. I decided upon marital status, children, pets, employment situations, home ownership, leisure activities, deepest fears, most consistent negative thoughts and on and on and on.
Then, alternate me develops a marketing strategy based solely on this character I've created. Let's call our character Violet. Violet is a mom of two daughters. She's thirty-five, she loves yoga but rarely finds time to do it. She is married to a man, who works many hours per week. She's full-employed in the retail sector but is ultimately, unhappy with her job. She pays high daycare fees. She's trendy, but conservative. She reads romance novels and her secret dream is that one day her husband comes home and dotes on her, instead of falls asleep. She's afraid that her life is headed in a dull and boring direction, that she'll be driving a mini-van forever and that she'll eventually lose interest in her husband because the amount of times they have been connecting lately is depressing. And on, and on, and on.
Can you see now, how focused and clear my marketing strategy can now become? The ONLY person I'm marketing to is this creation. That's some super scary stuff, because, what if? What if you were way off on your ideal customer? What if she doesn't buy? In my opinion, either way you cut it, worst case scenario is neither buys from you and you figure out where you went wrong. But, best case scenario is, you create a plan that looks something like this:
- majority of marketing dollars spent on Instagram
- pictures are aspirational, with moms and daughters
- interests are drilled down to: yoga, motherhood, romance, family vehicles that aren't mini-vans, conservative trends in fashion and the home, moms who juggle many things etc etc etc
- bio's are focused on the pain point alleviation of your product for this character
- the stages of your funnel address her specific issues
- website creation is pleasing to her preferred colour palette and modern in design
- purchasing is easy and returns are easy and amazing customer service is offered
- there is the incentive and potential to share your marketing in an easy manner
Now can you see how much easier it is to talk to your ideal customer? Being all things to all people is exhausting and usually results in spinning your wheels. Take the time to clearly identify your clients and customers. It will pay off in spades in both time and dollars! This is true for ANY BUSINESS. Service, product based, not-for-profit, direct sales, whatever your jam, you need to start with a deep dive into your customer and knowing everything about what makes them tick. You essentially, need to become them.