Choosing Your Customers and How to Discover Your Ideal Customer Type
Have you ever been dismayed or annoyed by one of your customers?
Did you ever look at your customer base and get a little frustrated by the type of customers that you have?
If you could, would you change them all to a certain type of customer?
Here’s some news for you.
It’s all your fault, you know. Your customers are your customers because you chose them.
You chose them with marketing, you chose them with lead generation, and you chose them with a decision. Those decisions could be ruining your business.
Here’s why your customers make or break your business.
Your business exists to provide a service or product to your customers. That’s its entire purpose… almost. It’s also there to give you an exciting business, a great income and a better way of living… better than a J O B, right?
But here’s the problem with running a business: if you take on anyone as a customer you have a job. If you welcome sales from anyone then you’re not building ‘your’ business. If you just do what your customers want, you’re building a business for them and not for you.
This all sounds rather harsh but think about why you started your business. You probably set it up with a passion from some area of expertise and then started working with excited clients in that area. And then, over time, you accepted many types of customer and started doing things to please them, rather than you, adding to your long list of options.
Being driven by your customers is not the way to build your ideal and best business. Not one bit. And it’s also not going to help you give the best you can to your best customers, either.
Your customers shape you and your business… so why not chose the right ones?
As Seth Godin once said: “Choose your customers, choose your future”.
Selecting the right customer ensures that your business goes the way that you want it to and it’s totally possible to do this.
With customer profiling, lead generation, marketing and a good sales pipeline software – you can and will have the right customer base.
There are a few steps to making sure that you have the right customer base and continue to build it.
1) Define your customer – who are they?
So many businesses fail to do this. Not understanding who your ideal customer is will put you on the path to accepting anyone. Not considering whether or not a lead is the right lead for you will mean you’re working for everyone and anyone instead of concentrating on finding the customers that truly add to your business.
You have to have a clear idea of who your customers are. Your ideal customer needs profiling.
Let’s call him Paul.
- What does Paul look like? (And we’re not talking aesthetics here.)
- What problem does Paul have that you can fix?
- What is it about Paul that makes him an ideal customer for you?
- How does Paul make your business better?
- Why is Paul your ideal customer?
This is just a starting point, and you can and should delve much further into this. You should get so clear on who they are that you can spot them in the street! This article gives a bit more background into developing customer personas.
Simply going to your best customer and asking these sorts of questions will help you. You’ll presumably want a good paying, easy to deal with, interested and passionate customer who not only makes your job of dealing with them easier, but will also help you to be better at what you do.
Spend time getting this right and don’t be afraid to say no to people who don’t fit this profile. You may have many profiles for different areas of the business, but just make sure they all add to your, your business and the future goals of it. There’s no use trying to sell vegan food to meat lovers.
2) Find where they hang out
We’re not talking stalking here – we’re talking marketing and lead generation. Once you have your customer profile you can use it to find your perfect match. When you understand who your customer is you can find where they hang out.
- Where does Paul hang out online and in real life?
- What interests Paul? Can you create content that helps him?
- What does Paul read? Can you be on those pages?
- Does Paul network? Can you join his club?
- What social media does Paul use and what does he say or get involved in?
- Does Paul listen to podcasts or the radio? Where can you be so Paul sees you?
A lot of marketing now is very content-led and helping Paul to success and showing that you understand his problem should now be easier… now that you know who he is!
A great tip here would be to talk to your current ‘best’ customers and find out why they chose you. Why are your best customers buying from you? How did they find you and where? Maybe you can find more of them by simply understanding and repeating the process that led them to you.
3) Lead generation – where do your best customers come from?
Do you know? Do you even ask them? Understanding this gives you great marketing and lead generation power and knowledge. When you can pinpoint the exact place your customers come from you can simply do more of it, improve it, and attract the right sorts of customers.
You’ll need a good sales pipeline software to track your leads and see which channels are working for you.
- How much effort are you spending on each channel of marketing?
- How easy is it to convert a lead to a customer on each strategy?
- Are you spending more money on one channel but converting few?
- What can you do, if anything, to improve the lesser-performing areas?
Are you using your lead generation channels as well or as affectively as you can? Are you attracting Paul or Peter? Maybe Peter is a good customer to have too, but costs you more and earns you less? This leads us onto segmentation.
4) Segmentations – set up different actions for different types of customers.
You’ll certainly have more than one ideal customer. Don’t be everything to everyone but do have a business that accepts different types and offers those types different processes and actions.
Paul spends more on average then Peter so he requires a little more follow up and he hangs out in more expensive places. The lead generation for Paul is more timely and costly but when you convert him it’s a good return on investment.
Peter pays you less but due to the smaller cost he converts quicker… but of course you’ll need a lot of Peters in your business to make as much money as a few Pauls!
Segmenting your lead generation and your customers into different profiles helps you to see what works, what doesn’t, and also attract and communicate with them more effectively. Lead generation isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ activity.
5) Use a CRM to follow up and nurture your leads.
Using a CRM like SalesRadar gives you a simple and easy to view sales pipeline. You’ll be able to see where your customers come from and how well they convert. And you’ll also be able to improve the more important revenue stream.
Having a clear sales pipeline means that you’ll not only know where your Pauls come from but how much it’s costing you, how effective it is, and whether or not you need to do more or less of a certain marketing or lead generation activity.
As an added bonus, SalesRadar also has a really simple Radar that gives you access to millions of business across the globe. You can search by keyword, location, with radius targeting or search your existing customers. This gives you the ultimate way to find Paul and help you to add to your lead generation.
Now that you know what Peter is you’ll be able to see him and add him to your lead generation process. Having a CRM makes is visual and trackable.
Customer profiling also makes finding your ideal customers more like finding Wally… only easier. When you know what you’re looking for it all falls into place.
You can and should have the right customers for you…
Choosing your customers is possible and should be mandatory. If you want to build and run a successful business then you need to profile your ideal customer, work out where they hang out, find them, market to them and add them to your sales funnel and pipeline.
You CAN have the ideal customers and a business you love… you just have to know your Paul from your Peter!
Try SalesRadar for FREE right now and you’ll see how easy it is to find your perfect customers and track how you interact with them. Get your customer profiling set up and working for you – and don’t be afraid to say no at the appropriate times.
Sometimes it’s not you – it’s them!
Good luck and contact us if you need any help at all. If you’re our Peter we’ll certainly help you out ;).