Discovering your target market or ideal customer is a foundational element of getting any business on track, and is especially relevant for start-ups, small businesses, and midsize businesses.
Compelling marketing communication is favored by your ideal customer, but if you don’t speak their language, talk about their pain, know their habits, desires and values, you’re missing a lot of opportunities.
There are countless ways to research your ideal customer and everybody talks about target markets, but on this day you will learn the 4 essential questions for helping you get clearer on this idea.
1. Who will benefit the most from your products or services?
The common answer to this question is “everybody.” If you think every possible human being is your ideal customer chances are you’ll waste your greatest resources time and money.
To answer this question begin building a detailed profile of your current customers. Group your most successful accounts (profitable+refer you).
2. Why do they do business with you?
This question is great for understanding your ideal customer. It can measure how effective your promotion, lead generation and sale process is working.
In order to successfully answer this question you need to “go Oprah” on your most successful accounts. Schedule some time to interview current customers that are the most profitable and also refer business to you.
3. What characteristics do they have in common?
Once you have a profile of your ideal customer, you should start analyzing the common characteristics they share. Start asking yourself some questions about these people: what industry are they in?, where are they located?, what size is their organization?, what do they read?, what do they listen to?, what challenges do they face?, how do they buy?
The answers to the questions above are not always available, but thinking about them in correlation to your ideal customer may allow you to narrow your niche and sell aggressively to it.
4. How can you best service their current and future needs?
Your best prospect is a current customer. Your second best prospect is a past customer. These two target markets already know, like and trust you. When thinking about understanding your ideal customers ponder serving their current and future needs.
This could be considered a customer service question, since winning and keeping customers is the result of effective marketing, but the real opportunity is when you can uncover a unique positioning or an innovation. Push yourself to discover their current and future needs. Ask ideal customers, “what are the top 3 challenges they’re currently facing?”, or “what are current vendors or suppliers doing that they don’t like?”
Start focusing on your target market or ideal customers today. You don’t have the time or resources to waste.