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Who Is Your Ideal Customer? Follow These 5 Steps To Find Out

Do you own a mature business? Or, are you just getting started? If you want to grow it’s crucial that you’re totally clear about who is your ideal customer.

Who’s your ideal customer? An individual who immediately sees value in what you offer and is willing and able to pay you for it. It’s that simple.

Here’s another reason why you should nail down the identity of your ideal customer: people tend to hang out with people who have similar interests and lifestyles. When your happy customers tell their friends or colleagues about you, it’s like you have a free sales force out there working for you.

The more you serve your most ideal customers, the more referrals you’ll receive.

But figuring out who your ideal customer really is can be mystifying.

I’m an expert on ideal customer identification, and my entire business is built around helping businesses with this often frustrating exercise. If you haven’t gone through the process, or if you’re ready to re-define your ideal customer, the 5 steps below will help.

[The following is a quick and dirty version of the deep dive exercises I conduct with my private clients.]

1. Scan your customer list and choose one customer you would love to clone. Tip: This person happily paid your full fee, was thrilled with what she gained from your product or service, and sent you referrals afterward.

2. List every characteristic that you can think of which describes this customer — demographics, lifestyle, and psychographics. Tip: What did he or she want more than anything in the world when it comes to what you offer?

3. Write down how that customer found you. Was it from a referral? Through your website? At a networking event? Tip: Whatever it was, do more of it!

5. Print out a photograph of your ideal customer and pin it up where you can see it while you’re working at your computer. Tip: Make believe that you’re having a conversation with that person whenever you create marketing such as blog posts, website content, and emails.

If you’re launching a new business, I’ll bet you have a pretty good idea about the identity of your ideal customer. In fact, your ideal customer may be you! Many successful companies were launched because some enterprising person identified a need that wasn’t being met for him or her.

Go through the same process as above but pretend you’re Dr. Frankenstein! Create a prototype of the person who will see immense value in what you offer and will be willing and able to pay you for it. Do your best to be precise.

Listen, folks, I know this for a fact. Being totally clear about who is your ideal customer has a long-term positive impact on every aspect of your business. It’s the secret sauce to create websites that connect, blogs that are found, engaging social media posts, and a brilliant elevator speech.

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