One of the first marketing exercises I had to go through when I was setting up my coaching business was to define the profile of my ideal client. And I was quite resistant to this exercise. Why can’t I coach everyone? Why should I restrict myself to a certain target group? Isn’t this limiting my potential target audience?
But those of you that have been in practice for some time know very well that there are clients that you love working with and clients that can be a real pain.
So how can you attract more of the clients that you love working with? This will make your work more fun and fulfilling and eventually your business more profitable. To be able to attract more of your ideal clients you need to have a clear understanding of who they are.
We went through the same exercise with Helen, one of my veterinary clients. She developed a simple profile of her ideal client. She described her ideal client in terms of demographics—age, sex, family composition, earnings and geographic location – and psychographics – character, values and philosophy.
She also described her client’s needs and pain points. By understanding what her client’s issues are, she has a better understanding of whether or not her services provide a solution. Because every problem her customer has is an opportunity for her to provide the solution
She also determined where her ideal client works, where she networks, what websites she visits, what social media she is using, whether she is reading emails, newsletters, blogs, etc and where and how she can connect with her.
Helen came to realize that her initial lack of understanding of her target client made her marketing message too generic and less powerful. When she described her ideal client in great detail she was able to refine her message in order to speak directly to her client’s heart and mind. She was also able to develop a strategic marketing plan in order to target and to connect with her client though the channels that the client is using.
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