I’m going to be super honest with you here, this is one of the toughest parts of starting and building a business.
Us humans are programmed with some kind of deep seated FOMO (fear of missing out) in many walks of life, particularly us girls!
So nine times out of ten the market we target is way too broad.
We worry that by niching down we will alienate or miss out on other potential people who may also like our product or service.
The challenge with going too broad with our target market is that we simply cannot please all of the people all of the time and you will spend an awful lot of money trying to find out who your actual buyers are.
However, you also don’t want to be so niched that the potential market size isn’t big enough for you to make any money!
So we need to find a balance between say, ‘women over 20’ and ’25 year old college leavers, with black hair, brown eyes who studied microbiology.’
I’m clearly being facetious but you get my meaning right?
You must also always bear in mind, the marketplace is extremely competitive in many niches these days and so the more you can define and own your niche and try to completely monopolize that market segment, the faster you can expand and diversify as you grow.
I’m not saying that eventually you can’t target multiple market segments but to give yourself a fighting a chance when you get started, get defined.
You’ll also find, the clearer you are about who you’re talking too the easier it will be for you to create a brand that resonates with that person.
Your communication will be on point, you’ll be speaking directly to them and you’ll know the kind of posts to publish on social media, the kind of articles to write or ads to create, because you’ll have such a clear idea about who it is you’re talking to.
Believe me this exercise will save you hours of blank screen syndrome and frustration!
Here’s an example of an avatar I did for my business;
Kate is 48 years old, from the Midwest with two children aged 16 & 19. The 19 year old has left home and is at college.
Kate is a respected Office Manager on a decent wage but as the kids have grown she has a hankering for building her own business. She’s been tinkering with a blog and a social media account for the last couple of years and has even built an email list of around 500 people, but she’s a bit lost and not sure what to do or where to go next.
Secretly she’s pretty darn good at making jewelry and is always selling pieces to her friends. She lays awake at night wondering if she could turn that into a business and how it could become something that has a positive impact while being profitable.
Kate’s not ready to disappear into the obscurity of middle age but fearful of a lack of both time & energy to put into a new venture.
Kate would love to start traveling with her husband in the next few years and therefore wants to get something off the ground she can do on the move and also so they can travel in relative style. (She can totally see herself backpacking across India, as long as the hotels have spas & air-conditioning).
Plus she wonders if traveling might help her with her dream of finding beautiful jewelry pieces to add to her collection while helping people in developing countries at the same time.
Kate wouldn’t call herself a domestic goddess, but likes to look after herself & her family with good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle.
Kate loves to read (both fiction & non fiction), is a museum goer, enjoys yoga (although would love to be better at it), likes to learn and stretch herself and catch up with the girls for Friday night wines.
She’s actively involved in charitable affairs and helped out at the school garage sales & discos when the kids were younger. She has ambitions to have an impact in the world but has some secret fears that she’s past it and perhaps left it a bit too late to start again.
With an eclectic taste in music spanning from Fleetwood Mac to 80’s disco to Bruno Mars, she knows she is responsible for her outcomes and is an action taker at heart.
She loves Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, Brene Brown, Bridget Jones Diary and believes strongly in female empowerment.
She worries about her spreading waistline, competing with youngsters online, her aging parents and her almost grown up kids. But after years of looking after others it’s her time and she wants complete financial independence & freedom while investing her time in something she’s passionate about, that could potentially have a positive impact & allows her to travel.
Imagine I’m sitting down to create some content and I really have no idea who my target market is. I have no idea who I’m creating content for and therefore cannot hone my message.
Imagine again I sit down with Kate.
Do you think it’s much easier for me to address her fears, her dreams, her apprehension, her lifestyle?
To be sure it is!
Also how many Kate’s do you think there might be in the world? Women who have reached middle age, kids growing or grown up. Time for a new opportunity, chasing a passion project etc etc. Yes! Lots. A solid potential market size.
Can you build a business without a customer avatar? 100%. I have done it a couple of times over. However, it will take more time and money as you kind of throw things at the wall to see which one will stick.
Creating your own avatar will ensure straight out of the gate you know exactly what your message is and who you’re talking too.
So let’s get started.
Creating Your Customer Avatar
Based on your values from Day 1, and your business ideas from Day 2, start to think about your ideal customer, the person you would love to serve, the kind of person you’d have no hesitation getting on a call with to talk to about your products.
Now imagine you’re sitting in Starbucks or your favorite coffee house with this person describing your products to them.
Remember this is your person. You make their life up for them.
Who are they?
What’s their name, age, marital status etc?
Do they have kids?
What’s their family situation?
Where are they from?
What do they do?
What’s their job?
What’s their financial situation?
What are their hobbies, activities?
What do they dream about, what are they scared of?
What keeps them up at night, what gets them excited?
What music do they like?
What movies or books are they into?
What do they secretly worry about?
What’s one of their core values?
What motivates them?
Get specific here, the more you can intimately know this person, the greater your level of communication and ability to resonate with the right people.
Please don’t worry that you’re going to be alienating people when you focus in.
It’s the clarity that’s key here.
The clearer you are, the easier it will be for you to take action. The more action you take the more people you will attract.
Just because I’m targeting Kate does not mean that I will not attract older people, some younger, men, Ozzies, Brits etc. So many people will resonate with Kate & her fears & desires and my messages will be that much clearer.
So get as detailed as you can.
Digital Marketer have a great ‘Customer Avatar’ Worksheet to help you go through this task methodically.
Then when you’re ready, print off a pic from google of what the person looks like in your mind.
Then next time you sit down to create content, or source a product or create an ad on facebook, you can imagine you are sitting across from the very person you’re creating it for.
This exercise will help you immensely so do please take the time to do this and put it somewhere you can look at when you need to.
Whoop Whoop! Day 3 is under your belt my friend. 😎