Your customer should be at the center of your business and your marketing messages. If you take the time to identify your customer and create a customer profile (also called an avatar) that embodies your ideal customers or clients, you can create more directed messages that speak to that specific customer group.
The customer identification process is fairly simple. First, consider basic demographic information, such as whether your customer is a man or a woman, whether he or she has children, and his or her household income. It's best to start with this demographic information because you can usually gain some of this by either surveying your current customers or by gathering data about them using your web analytics or other analytics tools. If you have not launched your business, it's actually even easier. You can research the overall industry data and select which segment(s) of the market you'd like to target with your brand and create your business around that market segment.
Once you have this simple profile, you can begin to add psychographic information as well. What does your customer do for a living? What does she do in her spare time? Identify the traits of your potential customers that make them want to interact with your brand or make a purchase from your business. Identify parallel traits that make them want to interact with other, similar or competing brands.
Finally, consider the geographic location of your customer. This is often forgotten, but very important. Your marketing messages will be different if you are targeting customers in a single local community, in large cities throughout the US or other Western nations, or around the world. The more cities and regions you target, the more you need to know about world culture. Fortune 500 companies spend millions of dollars learning about local culture before they expand into new regions. Most small business owners do not have those resources, but you can learn about the market and about what your customers expect from you wherever you do business.
Use the each of these elements (demographics, psychographics, and geographic location) to create a complete profile for your customer that identifies who she is, where she shops, what brand of sneakers she might wear, and where she gets her information. This profile will help you create relatable messages for your customers.
Still not sure how to create a customer profile? Take our Identify Your Customer mini course where we walk you through the process step-by-step.