Lewis' Posts - Lewis' Blog
We have discussed this topic before but I believe it is so important and so ignored that it is worth bringing up once again.
Most of us know that we need to focus our marketing and sales attention on our best customers. Unfortunately, too many of us have not taken the time to identify what those customers look like. Therefore, we plug away daily at tossing out trial balloons to see where they land. And that is no way to run a business.
Instead, we should take the time to first understand ourselves, who we are, who wants to work with us, who wants to buy from us, and why. Usually, those most interested in us will be our best customers. But they shouldn't have to stumble upon us. We should identify them and then communicate messages that let them know we exist and that we are a great solution provider for them. Whether we sell products, services or both, we need to determine what it is we sell and who wants it.
The first step is to understand that seldom do we operate in a vacuum. It is unlikely that our products and services are so unique, that we represent a buyer's sole choice. Therefore, we have to reach out to our ideal customer and become the buyer's first choice. To do that, we first define our solutions, dissect their value for the customer, and then identify the customer most likely to buy those solutions. What do they look like and how do we reach them?
For today, let's focus on what they look like? Here are the questions needing answered:
1. Where do they do business?
2. Why do they do business in those places?
3. What is their annual revenue?
4. How many employees to they have?
5. What kind of solutions do they need?
6. How do they choose those solutions?
7. Why would they want to do business with us?
8. What drives and motivates them?
9. Who are their customers? What do they look like?
10. What professional organizations do they belong to?
11. How do they reach their customers?
12. What single thing about them makes them different from their competitors?
13. How can my business solutions make them better?
These are the starter questions. The deeper the understanding that you gain about your customers, the better chance you have of developing a relationship with them. Everyday small businesses receive marketing messages. The only chance you have of getting your best customers to read and respond to your messages is if you know what makes your customers who they are, and you write messages that show you understand their challenges and that you are about their needs, not yours.