Our 5-step guide to figuring it out.
By David Dodd, National Key Account Manager, Prime Creative Media
Marketing Manager: “Hey Boss, who is our ideal client?”
Business Owner: “One with lots of money.”
It was the 19th Century when the first display ads popped up in British newspapers, mostly advertising bogus health remedies to an affluent middle-class. You can imagine a marketing manager developing an ad with rich hypochondriacs in mind.
Two hundred years later, the need to identify prospective customers hasn’t changed. Engaging with them, however, is a lot more difficult than placing an ad in the newspaper. With so many mediums available, you need to know exactly who you are selling to, so that you can find and engage with them. We offer this five-step guide to identifying your ideal customer.
Step 1 – Pick your best client
Most businesses have a best client. A company that not only invests a lot of money with them with a generous margin, but is an absolute pleasure to deal with. It’s a great relationship, where both parties feel like they are winning.
Step 2 – Do a case study
Case studies, or client testimonials, are often only seen as a marketing tool to advertise the benefits of a business. Having written thousands of these over the years, we at Prime Creative Media have found that the smartest operators take on board the insights from this work to better understand their value in the marketplace.
Step 3 – Identify the ‘pain points’
If your client is spending money with you, it’s because you are solving a problem for them, a pain point, that they couldn’t solve elsewhere. The relationship works, because the solution you provide is perfect for them. Use insights from the case study, and some frank conversations with the client, to work out exactly what is the greatest value you are offering them.
Step 4 – Profile the client
Use those pain points to characterise the company into a profile. For instance, do those pain points come from the business operating in a certain industry? Or from being a certain size? Or holding a certain market position? Profile the characteristics that make them such an ideal client.
Step 5 – Write a list
Use the profile you’ve created as a template to identify a list of similar organisations. A first step will be to look at your client’s top competitors. The template you’ve created, however, will be helpful in thinking outside of the box in identifying prospective customers you might not have considered before.