In order to solve problems for your customers, you need to know who they are. You need to get very specific in who they are in order to have a better chance of converting a sale.
There are TONS of people to market to in the world but only a select group who will actually purchase from you. So ask yourself these questions about your ideal customer and if you don’t know the answers, you’ll want to find as many as you can.
In the industry, this exercise is called defining your Avatar, which is a fancy word for your typical buyer. Below are some questions to ask your customers if your business is Business to Consumer sales.
- Gender – Are they male or female?
- Age range – Be as specific as you can. Generally, what is the average age range of your followers and your customers?
- Where do they live? Country, State, Time zone?
- Where do they hang out in their spare time?
- Do they have kids or grandkids?
- Do they have a hobby? If yes, what is it and where do they shop for supplies?
- Married, Single or Engaged?
- Widowed or Divorced?
- Spouse or partner?
- Where do they use their mobile phone the most? In doctor offices? In bed at night? Waiting in carpool line?
- How do they relax?
- Do they take vacations? If yes, where?
- Where do they like to shop?
- Where do they hang out online? What social media?
- Do they have pets? If so, what dogs or cats?
- Are they computer savvy?
- Do they have a multiple income family or single?
- Do they own a car or ride the bus?
- Do they own a home or rent?
- Are they college-educated?
- Do they volunteer? If so, where is their passion
- Do they belong to a country club, golf club, tennis club?
- What magazines do they like to read? I like to use these same magazines to get ad copy for ads, topics of discussion, find pain points as well as home decor and color trends.
- What books do they read? Fifty Shades of Gray, Suspense or Self Help
- What movies do they like to watch? Action, Sci-Fi, Romance, Comedy
- How do they describe themselves? Christian? White Collar? Homemaker?
- Where do they shop? Khols? Nordstrom? Local? Amazon?
- What does your ideal customer relax?
- What other items do they purchase and where?
- What do they search for on Google or YouTube? Where people search for answers to their problems.
- Do they buy on Google Shopping, Etsy, Amazon, Ebay?
- What websites do they visit?
- What would they describe as the most important thing in their life?
- Do they attend conferences? If so, which ones?
- Do they cook, do take out or go out to eat?
- Are they active or couch potatoes?
- When do they typically do most of their buying?
- What does a typical day in the life of your ideal customer look like? Wake at 5 AM for a 9-5 job? Wake at 7 AM for a stay at home mom? Retired? Try to step through the whole day imagining what they see, do, smell, actions they take etc.
Finally, why does your ideal customer even buy your product? What benefit are they looking for? I promise it’s not what you assume. Example, a wreath customer of mine IS looking for a new fall wreath for their door but having the new wreath is not the benefit. The benefit is always emotional. They want a warm inviting home to come home to after a long hard day or maybe they desire to have the best-looking door on the block or maybe they are busy momming and would like to have at least one piece of their life look normal (their curb appeal).
The best or worst thing about this exercise is that it will be different for every maker, no matter what you make. If we have a group full of wreath makers, some of the answers to the questions above could be the same but a lot won’t be. Example, a person who buys an inexpensive deco mesh wreath is not the same person who would buy an expensive silk flower wreath.
HOW to Get these Answers?
There are several ways to get these answers. One place to start is to research some of your past customers. If you have a regular customer who has purchased more than once from you, start there. Look up their shipping address on Google maps (take note of the location of the home, home style, surrounding area, cars in the drive, kids playground equipment, curb appeal or yard, etc.).
Facebook is one of the largest data collectors online. For each person who joins Facebook, they allow Facebook to gather data on them. Therefore, you can search on your Facebook Page insights and I’ve gone as far as looking up past customers on Facebook to find information. Most of the time can see what movies they like (which says a lot about a person), what books they read, what groups they are in, what they share, do they have kids, they age, etc.
Ask your top 10-15 customers to complete a survey. This type of market research has been done for many years by corporations. Create a free Google form and ask them 10 – 20 questions. If you can get them on the phone, even better.
WHY Know Your Ideal Customer?
When you know who your ideal customer is, you’ll learn how to market to them more effectively. You’ll learn where and when to market. How to word your emails or facebook posts, Etsy listings, etc. Where to target Facebook ads and what to say in your Facebook lives or YouTube videos.
More importantly, you’ll learn their struggles, challenges and pain points and be able to use your skills to solve them in the way of products to sell.
Questions to ask Busines to Business sales
- What other products or services do they sell?
- Where are they located? Seaside, Urban, Rural
- How long have they been in business?
- Why are they buying?
- When do they do their buying?
- How often do they buy?
- What are their challenges you can solve?
- What do they expect?
- What makes them feel successful?
- What size is their company?
- How many employees?
- How long in biz?
- What is their purchasing medium? website, in person, over phone, brick and mortar
- What is their budget?
- What is their monthly, yearly, quarterly sales goals?
- What is their current customer conversion rate?
- What is their lifetime value of a customer?
- What values and beliefs define their brand?
- How do prospects find thier products?
- What is their biggest customer challenges?
- What makes their business unique in the market?
- Who are their three biggest competitors?
- What do they want their company to be known for in the market?
- How do their customers perceive their company and brands vs. their competitors?
- What (non-obvious) characteristics do their best customers have in common?