Who’s Your Ideal Client?
Let’s talk about the magic 3 words to include in your Ideal Client Descriptor to boost your sales. We ‘re on Step 5 of how to create a compelling and clear message for your business. Step 5 is answering these questions:
“Who are you talking to?”
“Who is your ideal client?”
Watch the video or read the article below. Links to Steps 1 – 4 are in the PS below.
Start Out General and Move to Specific
When you start out in your business, your ideal client may be general – like a life coach who says she works with people in transition.
Then, as you do more of your work, you realize whom you attract and who resonates with what you do and who you enjoy working with. You can get more narrow in your specifications of who you work with – like, a life coach may say, “I work with women between 30 and 40 who want to create a meaningful relationship in their life. They want to stop the speed dating, and they want to have a meaningful relationship.” That gets more and more specific. That’s a good thing.
You can get too specific, but there’s a sweet spot with specificity. As I’ve said before, it doesn’t mean you can’t work with other people, but your ideal client is who you are talking to when you’re talking about your business.
The first question to answer is, “Who are you attracting and who do you like working with?”
What Themes Emerge?
The second thing to look for is themes. You can talk about demographics, which is gender, age, race, ethnicity, where people are from. I know some coaches who were originally Russian, and they work with a lot of Russian people because they speak the same language, and they have a lot it common from their culture.
Maybe a nationality is part of your ideal client descriptor. Maybe it’s an age range and career path like mine, “I work with women between 35 and 65 who have their own service-based business, and who want to learn to market and sell authentically so they have more clients and make more money, and make a bigger impact.” That’s one way to do it.
Another approach is psychographic. It could be people in transition or someone who’s being downsized from a corporate job and needs to figure out what they’re going to do next if they don’t want to go back into corporate work.
It could be a mom with small children who needs to learn how to take time for herself, or have quick recipes, or figure out how to have group education for her home-schooled children. Those are all aspects of life that maybe you address because maybe you have that experience or you have that desire to help those people.
Then, there are the more thematic qualities. In my case, I used to do mental peak performance work with athletes. I worked with all sorts of people, but athletes were one of the groups that I worked with and really enjoyed.
At one point I realized that I wanted to work with business people because I know that world so much better than I know the athletics world. It was also a better fit, in terms of how people perceived me.
I looked at the characteristics of the athletes I worked with, and they were driven to excellence. They wanted to play their best game, do their best, and really continue to improve how they did their sport.
I realized I could I could transfer that quality to my Ideal Client Descriptor to say, “I work with business women who are driven to excellence in their business.”
It doesn’t mean they’re so driven that they never take time off, but they are always wanting to improve, to get better, to have a better business – a business that serves them and serves others.
The Magic 3 Words to Include
These three words are fantastic to put into your descriptor.
Here’s why: If they’re not on your Ideal Client Descriptor list, it’s going to be so much harder to make a sale.
The first word is “ready”.
Are they ready?
Do they know they have a problem?
Do they have something they want to accomplish?
Are they fed up with where they are – like women who want meaningful relationships and are sick of having a lot of first dates and no second dates?
Are they ready?
Do they know, or can they admit when you’re talking to them, “Yes, this is something that is a problem, and something I want to solve now”?
It’s very important that they are ready.
The second word is “willing”.
Are they willing to take change on?
If you’ve worked with people very long, you know that some people just are not willing to make the change. It can be painful to watch, and it’s painful to try to influence them – if they’re not going to choose it.
The ideal client, in my book, would be saying, “Yes, I know this is an issue. Yes, I want some help. Yes, I'm willing to do the work and pay you the money that it’s going to take for me to work with you to make this change.”
The third word is “able”. Are they able?
This includes, “Do they have the financial resources to invest in working with you?”
If they don’t, are there other resources that you could offer them?
Do you have free reports on your website?
If your heart is to serve women, for instance, who are getting out of abusive relationships, they are probably not going to have the financial resources to pay your full fee.
Do you do pro bono work?
Do you offer a class at the women’s shelter?
Do you offer free reports, as I said before?
Do you offer something through a church, or do you have a day a month when you do pro bono work?
I know a lot of professionals do pro bono work because they want to serve – and they also know they have to have a sustainable business.
I offer a free workshop every month called Abundance with Adele that I invite women in business to attend. They are looking for business and sales advice for their small business. I always add energy work as well because it’s so important for peak performance. It’s my offering to the community and helps me understand what my ideal clients want while helping those who attend get some answers and solutions to their issues.
Is your ideal client ready, willing, and able? Those are three words that I think you could put on your Ideal Client Descriptor to great effect.
That’s Step 5: “Who’s your ideal client?”
This week, think about who you like working with and who really benefits from your work, and write your ideal client descriptor list.
It could be the demographics – which are the statistics about them: their age, their gender, where they live, their ethnicity.
It could be psychographics: a woman in her 50s who’s becoming an empty-nester and wants to figure out what’s next in her life. That would be a psychographic.
Then, there’s the thematic: Are they ready, willing, and able – and whatever other themes you see that are in common, that your ideal clients have in common.
PS Here are the links to the other videos in this Clear and Compelling Message series: