One of the most fundamental basics of running a super successful online business is knowing who your ideal customer is. When I speak to people on the phone who say their ideal client is “anyone really”, I get excited because this says to me that they have not been through the ideal client exercise recently and that gives me a great opportunity to show them how important it is.
For instance, say you are an accountant and your ideal client is anyone. That’s great. So if Tesco’s head office rang you and asked you to manage all of their accounts, you’d be able to take that on, right? If not, then maybe your ideal client is not ANYONE then. Maybe it’s more specific than that.
Knowing whom you want to work with is critical, and it starts with knowing who you are.
For instance, if you are a vegetarian who feels strongly about animal cruelty, then you are not going to want to work for a sausage making company. Are you?
So the first stage in understanding your ideal client is to understand yourself.
Think about what you and your business stand for, what is important to you and how does that translate to your customers. If you are a heart-centered, gentle person who believes in moving slowly and considering all the options before you make a decision, then I would imagine that you wouldn’t want to work with type A serious go-getters who take risks and act quickly on their intuition.
Don’t ever say you can work for anyone.
You didn’t get into running your own business to work for clients who have lifestyles or businesses that you don’t agree with. You got into running your own business so that you could enjoy what you do, love your life and generally feel happier and more fulfilled than you did when you worked for someone else.
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Imagine you are a health and fitness coach and you say you can work with women of “all ages, from 18 to 60”. I can guarantee you that you will not be able to have one marketing message that speaks to an 18 year old and a 60 year old in the same way. Yes, both women may want to improve their health and fitness but each will have different reasons for doing so and each will have widely different challenges.
Once you have a really clear understanding of who your ideal client is, then you will be able to speak to them using words and language that they will relate to, and you will be on your way to forging a relationship with them.
To make this task easier, you only need to figure out 1 ideal client. It is so much easier to talk to and help one person than a dozen at the same time so start with your 1 perfect customer. You want to be so clear in the way that you speak to your ideal client that they read your blog posts, Facebook updates, Instagram captions and say “Oh my god, she is talking to me, she knows me. She understands me.”
You do not want to be bland but you want to be 100% speaking to the people you want to attract into your business. You want people who are not your ideal client to read your stuff and move on. To take no action.
So are you really clear on your ideal client? Or are you still trying to attract everybody and actually attracting nobody?