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3 Steps to Help Define Your Ideal Customer

When you were a kid, was there something you wanted so badly that you visualized it down to the tiniest detail? Perhaps you would daydream of the day you’d get your first car, envisioning the style, color, interior, and — most importantly — how cool you’d look rolling up to your friend’s house in your new ride. While not all of us may have achieved our childhood fantasies, the practice of visualizing our goals represents an important lesson for those of us in business. The more precisely you can define your ideal customer, the more successful you’ll be at reaching the right people and, ultimately, the more your business will grow.

Why You Need a Clear Understanding of Your Target Market

Today, we live in an age where we no longer have to rely on marketing to the masses. With the help of data and targeted marketing strategies, you can reach the right person with the right message whenever and wherever. Having a clear understanding of your ideal customer enables you to provide this highly tailored marketing, which all translates to boosting your bottom line. Without an understanding of your ideal buyer, you’ll end up wasting a lot of time and resources trying to catch the wrong fish.

Defining Your Ideal Buyer in 3 Easy Steps

Step 1: Define your value proposition. Before you pinpoint the who, you first must identify the what and the why — in other words, your value proposition. This is a statement that summarizes exactly what you offer, what problems your product or service helps solve, and why customers should choose you over a competitor. For example, if you specialize in selling luxury real estate to empty nesters, your value proposition might be, “Where exceptional service and luxury homes meet.” Be clear about what makes you unique and the value clients get from working with you.

Step 2: Outline the buying process. The next step involves defining the how for your customers. What life events trigger them to buy your product or service? Where and how do they research solutions? What does the process look like from start to finish? Knowing how people interact with and experience your business will enable you to answer the most important question — who is your ideal customer?

Step 3: Create a buyer persona. Once you know the what, why, and how, you should have enough information to define the who. In this step, you’ll create a very detailed buyer persona (or customer profile). Think of this as a fictional person that represents your ideal buyer. Going back to the original analogy of the car, write down every distinguishing characteristic, and be specific. What is their age, occupation, income, and education level? Where do they live? Do they have children? You get the picture. The more specific you can be, the more effective your buyer persona will be.

If you’re ready to start reaching the right customers, take some time to complete these steps and define your ideal buyer. Doing so will enable you to tailor your messaging, attract better qualified leads, and increase conversions.

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