Today I am going to be talking your Customer Avatar. This is VERY different than the Customer Demographics for your business and confuses business owners all the time!
Using Customer Demographics for marketing made sense when I was startup entrepreneur. This was in the early 2000s and Google had not even hit anyone's radar yet. And they surely made sense in the 1980s when my parents had a bookstore in Meadville PA!
So why did customer demographics work before and don't work now?
There were SO many fewer options back in the day. You could advertise on ABC, NBC or CBS. There might have been a Top 40s radio station and a country music radio station and most towns had one newspaper.
Back then having broad strokes like income and age and household location made a difference.
And then the world changed. The number of websites, TV channels and online radio stations exploded. We got the iPhone and apps. Netflix and Hulu and recording TV shows to watch for later became the thing to do.
And attention on traditional media stopped working (at least unless you are a huge corporation with super deep pockets).
What Is A Customer Avatar?
So what exactly is a Customer Avatar? It is developing a profile for your ideal customer. By doing this exercise you will have a super clear picture in your head of who would be the optimal purchaser of your product or service.
John Lee Dumas of Entrepreneur on Fire has helped to make Customer Avatars more mainstream. Before he ever recorded his first podcast he knew that he was making them for “Jimmy”. Jimmy was a guy with a job and a long commute who wanted to be an entrepreneur. He had time each day to listen to a podcast on his slog to work, was in his 30s and had a wife and kids to support.
By knowing WHO he was targeting, John Lee was able to make a show that would appeal to EXACTLY that person.
Your Customer Avatar should be a representation of your perfect customer. You should consider things like:
- Their name (male or female)
- Do they have kids
- How old are they?
- Who are their favorite historical people?
- What social networks do they use?
- What books do they read?
- What is their worldview?
- What kind of car do they drive?
- What are their hobbies?
My Customer Avatar for Marketing Artfully is a woman (Chris) who has a business that she is passionate about, but is struggling to figure some things out. She is actually successful (and many people think she is doing great) but she knows that there are some gaps in her knowledge. She is also time challenged because of her work, maybe kids, spouse, and outside interests.
She wants to learn SPECIFIC things about marketing on her timeline without all the marketing bullshit most people in my industry throw at her. She loves my stuff because it is a little inspirational, very practical and and super targeted to her industry (Real Estate, Ecommerce or Writing).
She loves learning about marketing but also likes “meeting” some of the people that I follow like Liz Gilbert (Big Magic) and the Scavenger Life Podcast. She doesn't really love marketing the way that I do, instead she counts on me to tell her things that she should be aware of and looks to me to know which tools and courses she should buy to actually learn something instead of wasting her money.
Why Does This Matter In Marketing?
So what do I do with this information? How would it help YOUR business to know these things?
- First off it helps me to know where to advertise! I can market on Pinterest and Facebook and use my time wisely by writing blog posts like this one you are reading.
- I can make products that will help her and that she (and other women business owners like her) will buy.
- I can find products to recommend that she will be able to use in her business and which will help her (and I can make affiliate income from).
Sometimes people ask me how I make money and I say it is sort of like magic. I get coaching client leads even though I don't advertise for them because my perfect customer calls me and says, “I think I need to talk to you!”
I sell my digital products because I can write ad copy that will appeal to her needs and help her grow her business!
I get affilate checks in the mail and hear the PayPal button ring because I have recommended or sold something that will appeal to her.
What About Everyone Else?
One of the scariest things about doing your Customer Avatar is the thought that there are SO many other people out there that you COULD help. Thinking of niching down to a small group of people feels like eliminating a huge chunk of buyers because they won't like your stuff anymore.
So let's really think about this…. I listen to the Entrepreneur On Fire podcast. I am not Jimmy but John's content is amazing and I get a lot out hearing other people's entrepreneur stories.
I have men clients. I KNOW! Who would have thought that they could get through all the pink and lady pictures, but they do. They care more about the concepts that I talk about than the fact that all my examples are female focused.
You deserve to have a business full of people you like working with and selling to! Doing an avatar will let you laser focus your efforts on finding people to work with who will make doing business FUN!
How To Develop YOUR Customer Avatar
My marketing bestie and I sat down and recorded 6 videos about how to target your perfect customer and create your Customer Avatar. This is probably one of the most impactful things you can do for your business so we made sure that it was affordable for all of our “peeps”!
You get ALL of the information that you need to fill your business with customers you love! Not just videos but a worksheet, book and even examples of completed sheets that you can use to help make your “perfect customer”!
Nice things they say… “I thought I already knew how to identify a target market but this worksheet and video really opened my eyes up to details I hadn't thought of. Exactly what I needed to improve my my research and products. Thank you!” Rachel