You need an ideal client or customer. I know you would love to just sell to every person alive, but it does not work that way. In order to sell something you must convince someone that the product or service is right for her. If she does not feel a strong need or desire for it, chances are slim that she will buy it, in spite of how much you might want her to buy it.
I’ve learned that being specific is the best way to approach it. Help someone see why they need it and then they will pay for it. I believe it was Michael Hyatt who said people WANT to buy. They want to be convinced to buy. They are not going to buy unless they are convinced they need it. And you cannot convince everyone to buy from you with one pitch because everyone is looking for different things. They have different goals and ambitions. They have different problems to fix. So
But if you will focus on a target audience, narrow your search parameters, you will find that others who are not as interested will still see some benefit and you may actually gain a larger customer/client base.
It’s easy to say and difficult to do. I have worked on this for weeks and still feel like I am not there. Take the time now, get this right, and you will be happy about it later. Want to learn a few ways to define your audience better? Let’s learn together! Here are 3 ways I have worked to clarify my audience.
1. “What am I trying to do?”
I believe in asking this question over and over. I have asked and answered it at least 10 times. If you don’t know what you are trying to do, you will not know who you are trying to impact.
You need to remember that you are not selling a product. You are selling an experience, or a solution, or a change for the better. As Theodore Levitt famously said “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole.” You are selling solutions. But, to go further with this analogy, Scott McKelvey wrote an interesting article telling us we need to go further with our thinking. His point was simply that NO ONE wants a hole. We want a result. We want a picture hung on a wall, or some shelving put up.
And if I could take that even further, I don’t want shelves on my wall. I want decoration, or a place to put pictures of my family. I want a place to put important things.
Or maybe I want a hole so that I can see into my wall without tearing it apart.
You find those things by asking the question many times, “What am I trying to do?” Or more simply: WHY? Ask it and then ask it based on that answer. Dig deeper and find more clarity.
You can’t possibly know what everyone is going to do with your product or service, that’s why you can either do lots of research and really dig into the lives of others, or you can ask yourself. Asking YOURSELF will show some answers. You can speculate, but if you just answer honestly, you will find more clarity. And as unique as you are, there are probably millions of other people in the world with similar desires and motives as you. Clarity will help reach them.
Just don’t settle for asking the question only once.
2. Create an “avatar”.
Some people have suggested inventing a “personality” that fits you audience. This can be a very informative exercise. One day I decided to try it and wrote about 4 pages of material. I invented a
character! Now I am trying to use that character in writing a daily blog for the television program I am working for as I market our work. I was amazed at how easily it came. Maybe it’s just a reflection of me, but I don’t think it is completely. The important part of that is when you get very specific about a customer or client avatar, there will be perhaps millions of people who have similarities.
For someone to connect they do not need to be 100% the same. They just need to find similar characteristics. And if you can help your avatar, you can sell to those like it.
Jay Abraham was once asked in an interview how he can write to large audiences and still make it personal without being too generic. His answer was, “Because I never write to large audiences of people. I only write to one person.” When you write or produce content or even create products, create for only one person, and others will be able to benefit from it as well.
3. List your abilities, interests, and limitations.
There are only so many things you can and should do in a business. Find what works best, but also consider your limitations and interests. If you have a skill that you hate performing, it might not be the best thing to work toward. maybe you just need an attitude adjustment or to see the value in it, but if you can’t get behind it, stay away from it.
You also need to understand your limitations. I love basketball, but I stink at it. I wrote about that here. Find your strengths and use them. Learn to work around your limitations, and you will help clarify who you CAN help–which seems to me to be at least as important as who you WANT to help.
Clarity is important. Focus on one at a time, and build your business in a stable manner. That’s where you will find your repeat customers and the power to grow.