Know your Ideal Client Avatar
Every business owner needs to know in detail their ideal client avatar. Having this in place is like having a GPS. It guides your marketing, ensures efficient resource allocation, and enhanced customer experience.
To demonstrate this, let’s talk about the “Share a Coke” campaign…
They changed the “traditional” wrapping around the Coke bottle to say ‘Share a Coke with…’ and a popular name.
Essentially, Coke encouraged people to buy a bottle of Coke for their loved ones, with their names written on it. Clever!
#ShareACoke became the number one global trending topic. It resulted in over 1 billion impressions. The campaign won seven awards and raised sales by 2.5% after a decade of decline.
This campaign, which went global and was seen in 70 countries, became known as one of the most successful marketing stunts of the decade.
But why do you think the campaign was so successful?
For one, they hit the nail on the head by targeting their buyer persona, or client avatar.
You see, the main target audience for Coke, (and the campaign) was teenagers and mature college-going students from the age group of 13-25.
Most of these youngsters pass their time in the college canteen, restaurants, and cafes. They also love the sweet taste of Coca-Cola soft drinks with fast foods.
Coke launched the campaign to target these young people who are the most active users of social networking websites and would love to share selfies with a bottle having their name.
The campaign worked so well that they were able to replicate the campaign in many other countries.
From this story, it’s evident that when you narrow down your target audience, your chances of success increase.
That’s why it’s so important to know your client avatar…
Who Is a Client Avatar?
A client avatar or buyer persona is a profile of the perfect customer or client. It is a representation of your ideal client/customer.
When you’re distilling your client avatar down, you’ll go into the specifics of who they are, their behaviours, patterns, income and buying habits.
Important to note, a business may have more than one client avatar in the event that they wish to reach many ‘personas.’
The Importance of Knowing Your Ideal Client Avatar
Here are 4 reasons why every business owner needs to narrow down their ideal client avatar:
1. Laser Focus Your Marketing Efforts
Let’s be real…
Marketing is pretty much pointless if you target everyone. Your marketing must speak to a specific target audience whom you expect to buy your products from you.
Remember, good marketing is about the right message, hitting the right person at the right time. Understanding your avatar is the first step.
When it comes to marketing, what works in one demographic may not necessarily work in another. Even if it does, it won’t work as well. That’s the essence of a client avatar. You narrow down to specific individuals and even give them names.
It gives you a chance to communicate to the specific people you consider your ideal clients.
2. Save Your Advertising Money
From the jump, Coca Cola knew that they were targeting young teenagers and young adults. Their entire campaign was built around that, knowing that it would be easier to convince a young person to buy a coke bottle with their friend’s name and gift it to them.
Had the same campaign been applied to adults, it would probably not have landed as hard. But, because they knew who they were targeting, they only spent money to reach the young teenagers and adults.
Advertising can be a gamble if you don’t know exactly who you’re targeting.
You’ll spend so much time and money focussing on a really wide audience.
You have to know that your product or service is not for everyone. It’s for very specific people. And your advertising should only focus on those people, otherwise your coins will go to waste. That’s why you need to know your ideal client avatar.
3. Communicate Effectively With Your Target Audience
The way that you communicate with adults is different from the way you do with kids.
And not just that…
The way you communicate with adults living in Oxfordshire is not the same way you would with adults living in New York City.
When you know exactly who your ideal client is, you can communicate with them, on their level.
During an interview, one of the masterminds of the “Share a coke” campaign said, “Our research showed that while teens and young adults loved that Coca-Cola was big and iconic, many felt we were not talking to them at eye level. By putting first names on the packs, we were speaking to our fans at eye level.”
4. Retain Visitors and Encourage Them To Convert Into Customers
When you are speaking to someone at their level, it’s a lot easier to retain them. They are able to relate with your brand and pay attention to you.
If you can speak the ‘language’ that your target audience is interested in, you are able to retain visitors longer and encourage them to convert into customers.
Think about TV shows, radio shows, or even musicians who have a solid fan base. It’s all because they’re relatable to their audience. People can connect with the things they say and the way they do things on a personal level.
How To Know Your Ideal Client Avatar
1. Demographics – Who Is Your Avatar?
The first step to knowing your avatar is answering the question “Who is the person or that you’ve most enjoyed working with or you’d most like to work with?”
If someone calls you by name, you’re much more likely to pay attention to them. That’s why the #ShareaCoke campaign worked so well.
Having a specific customer persona starts with providing a name. You’ll even want a photo or cartoon likeness to go along with the avatar so you can picture them. You’ll need to be able to ask yourself:
What would Dan the Designer want to hear in this message?
Where is Penelope the Programmer spending time online this week?
How does Carl the Copywriter perceive our product?
Naming your client avatar makes them feel more real and relatable. Instead of thinking about abstract demographics, you’re creating a character with thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.
This humanization makes it easier to empathize with their needs and challenges.
Once you’ve given your client avatar a name, they need to have a specific age.
Giving them an age will help you to contextualise their life stage and experiences.
This can lead you to knowing their possible interests and what they spend time doing. The answer to these questions should in some way give clarity as to why they would be interested in your product.
If you’re targeting young adults, you may want to use a more casual friendly tone. If it’s mature adults, then formal language would in many instances work better.
Is the person that’s going to buy from you most likely a girl or a guy?
Knowing their gender helps you develop a more nuanced and accurate representation of your target audience.
It’s important to note because their goals and objectives (may) be different. It also allows you to embrace diversity and inclusivity in your marketing efforts.
d) Marital Status
Your marital status affects your buying behaviour, and in more ways than you would imagine.
A study found that married consumers are highly influenced than unmarried consumers as far as in the influence of purchase decision over buying behaviour.
Knowing this, you need to determine whether you’ll be targeting married, single, divorced, separated, or widowed people.
Including your client avatar’s marital status can be the difference between an effective marketing strategy and an ineffective one..
A person’s nature of work can give you insight into how much money they make, what their preferences are, and what their buying habits are.
Is your product targeting customers with white collar jobs? Is it targeting teachers, mechanics, chefs, marketers, or lawyers? And why is it targeting the people it’s targeting?
Find out how you can rewire your marketing efforts to be suitable to people within the occupations that you’re targeting.
Here are two things to include in this stage and why:
A job title provides valuable insights into your target audience’s professional context and needs. It indicates the types of products that would be most relevant.
Additionally, it gives insight into decision-making authority. Knowing whether the ideal client avatar has purchasing power can help you to align your marketing efforts.
Income, just like a job title, indicates the purchasing power of your customer persona. It shows, at least approximately, whether your product fits in with their budget.
You have to make sure that your product pricing is in align with the target audience’s spending capacity. The only way to do so, is to critically think about your client avatar.
If you look into it, people living within a certain area tend to have similar preferences, desires, fears, etc…
In some countries, where a person lives tells you a lot about their social class and this can help you to know what products they’re likely to be interested in.
Different locations have distinct cultural norms, values, and preferences. Knowing the location of your client avatar helps you tailor your messaging and offerings to align with their cultural context.
g) Social Media and Other Sources of Information
What kind of social media sites is your client avatar into? At what time are they very active online?
Write out the magazines, websites, and books that they’re into. What are the main topics that they acquaint themselves with?
This information is great to create and develop a marketing strategy because then you can give them the information on the platforms they spend the most time on..
2. Identify Their Challenges
Why would your customers buy from you? What problems are you solving for them?
This is an essential question to answer. What makes you better than your competitors, and why would clients come to you instead of them?
Based on the demographics we’ve talked about above, it’s easy to predict the kind of challenges that your customers may face.
For example, if you’re in the fitness industry, some of the challenges that your customers may face are lack of enough exercise or customised programmes that suit their fitness needs and goals.
Knowing their possible challenges will help you to know how to craft your communications and marketing strategies.
Here are some possible challenges:
Time Management Challenges
Your client avatar could be juggling multiple responsibilities and trying to prioritise tasks. Maybe, they can’t find enough time for personal interests and hobbies.
In your customer persona work, you highlight this challenge and how you will use it in your marketing strategy to speak to your intended audience.
Another possible challenge for your client would be keeping up with technological advancements. It could be digital privacy and security concerns, or information overload and digital overwhelm.
Health and Wellbeing Challenges
Your ideal client avatar may be stressed and burnt out. They may be having a difficult time balancing work and life. Or, it could be that they can’t access quality healthcare.
Personal Development Challenges
These are challenges related to self-confidence, self-doubt, impostor syndrome, and even achieving goals. This feeds into all other aspects of their lives, including career or business development.
Your ideal client avatar could also be facing challenges related to economic fluctuations and market uncertainties, inflation and rising living costs.
It is up to you to curate your messaging to touch these challenges and promise to solve them.
3. Determine Their goals
Ask yourself this important question – What would your avatar want to achieve? And how can you help them achieve it?
Understand that your target audience will only buy from you if you make their lives easier.
Your product needs to be able to give the customers value, which makes them want to buy from you. And your marketing and communication efforts should outrightly bring out this value.
Here are two reasons why you can’t afford to skip this step:
Knowing your client avatar’s goals helps you align your offerings with what they are trying to achieve. This relevance increases the likelihood that they will see value in what you provide.
Understanding your ideal client avatar goals can help you to develop your product. You can create features and functionalities that contribute to helping your clients achieve their desired outcomes.
4. Identify Their Pain Points
There’s a really interesting phenomenon in marketing which was recently described by Erica Mackay, (The Marketing Detective).
She says that there are two types of pain points: The nail in the foot and the pebble in the shoe.
The Nail in the Foot
The nail in the foot causes immediate pain which she’d do anything to get rid of. If someone approaches her when she’s in that much pain with something to get rid of the pain, she’ll probably buy it immediately.
The Pebble in the Shoe
Then there’s the pebble in the shoe. When there’s a pebble in your shoe, you can withstand the discomfort for hours before it finally gets to you. It’s just a slight annoyance.
The easiest pain point to market to is the nail-in-the-foot pain point.
With this the customer is in serious pain, they are hopping around looking desperately for a solution and will reach for whoever comes to mind first.
Alternatively, the pebble on the shoe pain point can be a gold mine for some businesses.
Identify both pain points that your business offers solutions to, and stay consistent to get to both the person with a pebble in the shoe and the person who has been bitten by the stinging nettle.
5. Recognise Their Values
People purchase products that are in line with their values.
A customer value is the perception of what a product or service is worth to a customer versus the possible alternatives.
In this step, you’ll need to outline what values your ideal client has.
An example is the solution that a product or service provides, not only to the buyer but to their organisation as well. Values are also monetary, time, energy, and emotional costs which consumers consider in making a purchase.
Here are two reasons why recognising your ideal client avatar values is so important:
Values are deeply rooted beliefs that drive people’s decisions. If you align your messaging and offering with their values, they are likely to connect with you emotionally and ultimately buy from you.
People buy from people who they know, like, and trust. If you can build an emotional connection with your target audience, you speed up this process.
Have you ever met someone and instantly connected with them? It’s probably because you perceived a sense of shared identity.
Maybe you share similar values, or it could be a similar experience.
That’s the kind of connection you want to have with your client avatar. It fosters a sense of belonging, making the customers feel like they are part of a like-minded community.
6. Pinpoint Any Possible Objections
In the game of business, we have to be realistic.
And when you’re stating the possible objections, you need to be REAL with yourself.
Why wouldn’t your ideal customer buy from you? It could be that your product is too expensive, or that they need a lot more convincing. It could also be that they are keen on working with your competitors.
By identifying these possible objections, you can pre-determine how to answer the hard questions from possible customers.
Your ideal client avatar may think that your product is beyond their budget. Remember, money means different things to different people.
At the same income level, some people are simply more willing to spend money on certain things that others aren’t
For some people, no matter how wealthy and comfortable they are, they are just risk averse. They are scared of committing to things and not seeing the Return on Investment.
You have to be prepared for this customer persona, and know how you will deal with them when the objections arise.
Lack of Trust
Some clients have had bad experiences in the past with similar products, and this makes them hesitant to buy. They are unsure about the quality of the product.
When dealing with this objection, you have to know your product as well as possible. To convince someone to trust you and buy from you, you have to be convinced of it yourself.
Your Ideal Client Avatar – Our Conclusion
In conclusion, you need to get down to the details of who your ideal customer is. These are the 4 reasons why you need to know your client avatar:
- Laser Focus Your Marketing Efforts
- Save Advertising Money
- Communicate Effectively With Your Target Audience
- Retain Visitors and Encourage Them To Convert Into Customers
How do you know your avatar? Follow these 6 simple steps:
- Fill in Their Demographic Information
- Identify Their Challenges
- Determine Their goals
- Identify Their Pain Points
- Recognise Their Values
- Pinpoint Any Possible Objections
If you don’t already have a client avatar, then it’s definitely time for you to get to work. Download our FREE client avatar workshop and get started on narrowing down your client avatar. Download here.
We’re always up for a conversation. Get in touch with us for free if you’ve got any questions or need any clarification.