A Huge Mistake! Lessons in Customer Avatars
Back in February (seems like a lifetime ago!), I was at a Training Summit in Denver and I bumped into Ryan Deiss, CEO of DigitalMarketer. We had a great chat about my book I don’t work Fridays and, as you’d expect from any expert in their field, he shared some valuable insight.
Like many of you, Jacki and I have done various DigitalMarketer courses over the years, but we decided to go a step further and invest in becoming a DigitalMarketer Certified Partner. We always look for learning, love marketing, and our passion is to help small businesses grow and succeed, so this seemed a natural fit.
With any (decent) certification, there’s a lot of investment in time and focus (which the lockdown has provided plenty of) and we recently rolled out the 90 Days Build, Optimise and Accelerate Training Program to our first group. The focus last week was the Customer Avatar- I can almost hear some of the virtual sighs when I mention these two words, because Customer Avatar is something that everyone has heard of and touched upon at some point, BUT very few have actually nailed it. They may have understood who their target market is (i.e. schools or accountants) but they’ve never got under the skin of each of their client avatars (notice the plural here – yes, you have more than one, but most businesses treat them all as one).
And it’s here that I come onto to my main point for this week: it may sound obvious that you need to work on your Customer Avatar, and it’s likely you’ve filled out a piece of paper after a webinar or course, but the fact is most business owners are so focussed on WHAT they’re selling, that they forget to think about WHO they’re selling to.
The other challenge with business owners, is that we’re easily distracted by shiny new things, so invest in paid traffic, social media, analytics, video production…the list goes on. Each of these comes with its own set of skills but knowing how to identify your ideal customer is one of the few skills that applies to EVERY single marketing discipline.
These are the 7 biggest mistakes business owners are making right now when it comes to their Customer Avatar:
#1. You may know some of the goals and values that are important to your ideal clients, but do you know which of these are relevant to your products/services?
#2. You’ll have thought many times about where your client avatar hangs out, but what are the niche conferences, books, blogs etc. that ONLY your ideal customer is attracted to? For example, if you’re in the golf products market -you wouldn’t want to assign Tiger Woods as a guru. Tiger is someone golfers are familiar with… however, so is everyone else! Instead, choose a more niche golfer like Justin Rose because the average non-golfer won’t know who he is—but your customer avatar will.
#3. It’s likely you know the usual demographics such as job title, gender, age etc. but have you ever pretended you’re sitting across the table from them and written down the words you would say to them in a normal conversation? If you don’t truly bring them to life, they’ll simply remain as a list of facts.
#4. You may well know some of the struggles your ideal clients have, but have you listed out their pain points they’re experiencing every day, and linked it up to how you help solve them?
#5. Many businesses obsess with why someone would buy from them, but few think about reasons why their ideal customer might choose NOT to buy their products, so neglect to address any objections in their marketing.
I’ve saved the two biggest mistakes for last:
#6. Most businesses stop at a single customer avatar. Your business almost certainly has more than one ideal buyer, so you need to build multiple avatars representing the different segments of your market.
#7. This is a process that your entire business needs to be involved in – think about how much knowledge your customer service team has about your clients as they interact day in, day out. Everyone and everything needs to be able to speak directly to your various avatars – it’s not just a one-off exercise that stays in a notebook.
You may have the best product or service in the world, but if you’re trying to sell it into the wrong person, then you’re never going to hit your numbers.
PS here’s what a few business owners thought of our recent training:
“The training that Martin provided is simply extremely relevant to our business’s needs right now!” – Rebecca
“You guys always make things practical and implementable.” – David
PPS if you’re interested in growing your sales and expanding your brand, using proven systems and best-in class training, ping me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.