Who is your ideal customer?
This may seem like an easy question. Most people, without hesitation, would answer something like:
“Females from 18 to 80.”
“Families with kids.”
Do you see yourself in those answers? Have you ever used something like that yourself?
While in some ways it may be true, if that is what you are focusing on, you’ll have a much harder time building your business.
Niching is about getting specific. Very specific. To the point you can describe someone in detail, and go on and on about whom they are.
“My ideal customer is a female from 40 to 60. She has worked extensively in a variety of industries, but has now decided to go it alone and set up her own company. She is building a creative company as an artist and author, and loves her new business, yet has no idea where to start when it comes to marketing. She has a website, but it isn’t giving her traction. She reads several business magazines, attends two conventions a year, and reads various online publications for support and advice. She’s never had a business coach, yet now realizes she needs help if she’s going to take her business to the next level. She doesn’t want a hand-holder coach; instead she’s looking for someone to build a plan and help her put it together over time.”
See the difference between a description like this over some of the others mentioned above?
And because I now can “see” my ideal client, and can market to her even more succinctly, I have a much greater chance of finding more just like her. Where there is one, there are many, both in your local community, and all over the world.
Have any doubts? Lets look at an example.
Let’s say a dentist is targeting local families. “Any family within a 20 mile radius of my office.”
Sounds like a great start. But what separates you from all other dentists within that 20 mile radius? Why should I choose you over Dr Smith? Or Dr Jones?
Now lets say you focus in on single working moms. You know they are busy. You know they are trying to juggle everything, and always have way more on their to-do list than they have time in the day.
So you start marketing specifically to them. Open Wednesday mornings at 6 am to stop by before school and work. And you’re open on Thursday evenings until 9 to squeeze in appointments after a busy day. Your marketing can be very specific, and say things directly to a single working mom.
Think you would see a rise in your clients? You bet. And think they would refer you to their friends – even friends who are happily married, and maybe even a few stay at home moms too? Yep.
They key is you are very specific about who you are targeting, and it allows you to think clearer about how you will reach out to them.
This is an example of a local business, but it gets even easier if you have a business where your client can exist anywhere in the world.
The key is knowing exactly who they are. Rinse, and repeat.