— March 26, 2019
Many people tell me they experience a rush of FOMO when they try to identify their ideal customer.
FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) is one of the big reasons people get stuck when they try to identify their ideal customer. They say,
“If we concentrate on attracting just one type of customer, aren’t we leaving out entire groups of people who want and need what we sell?”
The magic of the process, however, is that it forces you to identify your most ideal customers. The people who immediately see value in what you offer and who are willing and able to pay you for it.
Such as people who buy more than one item at a time and come back for more. And, people who are happy to pay full price. And, people who tell other people about your business.
Here are 4 circumstances where your business may actually have more than one ideal customer profile:
1. Your business serves customers in more than one geographic area
Example: Licenders, which is one of Be Visible’s clients. Licenders operates six lice removal salons in the NYC metro area: three in Manhattan, one in Brooklyn, one in Long Island, and one in Connecticut. During a careful analysis, the owner Adie Horowitz and I discovered that her ideal customers in all the locations shared many of the same characteristics, such as age and marital status, but the suburban moms had some very different concerns and needs than the city moms.
Therefore, we created two ideal customer profiles for Licenders – one urban and one suburban.
2. You need gatekeepers to listen to you before you can get to the final decision maker
Example: Another Be Visible client is a company that helps orthopedic and cardiology practices manage the agonizing task of fulfilling insurance company requests for medical records.
The road to the final decisionmaker, who is usually a CFO, starts with the practice manager. The practice manager feels the pain every day, while the CFO is focused primarily on the bottom line, and often is not aware that there is a problem.
That led me to create two different ideal customer profiles for this business, too.
3. Your business offers more than one distinctly different product or service
Example: Be Visible client, Operational Performance Success (OPS), is a perfect example of this. When a company undergoes a merger or acquisition, OPS comes in and implements processes that streamline systems and improve morale. The founder of OPS usually works with decisionmakers at the C-Suite level.
OPS also offers a signature product called The Employee Retention Toolkit. The toolkit is a solution for companies looking to retain their most valuable talent, particularly during times of low unemployment (like now) when it’s difficult to recruit employees. HR departments make decisions about products like these.
Therefore, we created two ideal customer profiles for OPS.
4. Your business offers different versions of a core service for different types of customers
Example: I offer two versions of my course, Attract Your Ideal Customer.
The first version is designed for established businesses poised for growth. They’re ready to trash their boring website and marketing copy and replace it with fresh messaging designed to help them reach their goals. They are busy people who need one-on-one help. They need it fast. And are willing to make a significant investment to get it.
The second version is a virtual course that appeals to new business owners. They have been struggling to tell their business story in a way that anyone will listen (much less their ideal customers). A big draw for this program is the group setting because the isolation of being a new entrepreneur can be quite daunting.
If identifying your ideal customer keeps getting put on the back burner, go ahead and give it another shot. As sales guru Brian Tracy said in Entrepreneur Magazine,
“The ability to find a customer, sell your product or service to that customer, and satisfy the customer so that he buys from you again should be the central focus of all entrepreneurial activity. The greater clarity you have about your ideal customer, the more focused and effective your marketing efforts will be.”
Now, stop procrastinating and dig in. Identifying your ideal customer is one of the best things you can do for your business. (Need some help? Download a Free Ideal Customer Workbook here.)