The Importance of Identifying Your Ideal Customer

In our current economic climate, it’s crucial for business owners to keep their customers loyal.  Surprisingly…..the one question that most businesses can’t answer is who their ideal customer is.  Some questions include – Who do you enjoy serving and who is your main target?   You should include the exact criteria of your ideal customer and develop ways to continue targeting this group.  It’s important that all your marketing material targets this type of customer and uses the appropriate messaging.   Another reason it’s important to pinpoint your ideal customer is to stop focusing on the customers that you don’t want.  Some customers end up costing you money in the end.  Companies should conduct a customer analysis annually with the help of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software.  This type of software can help you figure out your customer equity or what your top customers are worth to your business.

In the agency world, there are two types of customers – one type can create havoc and continue making changes to advertising and PR copy that ends up costing the agency money and time.  The second type of customer respects the agency’s time and more than likely has a marketing and business plan with clearly states goals and objectives.  For an agency owner, the ideal customer would be one that has a business and marketing plan laid out.  Each type of business will have different criteria for their ideal customer.  There is no cookie cutter formula for successfully identifying your ideal customer.  However, there are similar questions that you can ask:

  • What is the age, gender, education, location of my ideal customer?
  • What other products do they purchase that relate to mine?
  • What is their favorite form of communication?  Online, print, TV, etc.
  • How did they find your business?
  • What is important to them when selecting a vendor?
  • What do they think of the quality and value of your product?
  • What books do they read?
  • How long have they been a customer?

Once you can answer these questions, you are on your way to determining your ideal customer.   The most important part of the process is making sure you discover the main pain points of your customers.  You need to know the main problems, needs, and wants of your beloved customers.  The goal is to continuing solving their problems and coming up with the most cost-effective solutions.   This takes marketing research and really understanding the needs of your customers.  It also involved researching your competitors to see if they have similar products/services and can become at threat in the future.  Once you have the knowledge of who your ideal customer is…then you can propel into the future and build your business with the right customers.

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About Monique Merhige

Infusion Direct Marketing's founder Monique Merhige has over 15 years of marketing communications experience with technology companies ranging from small service firms and equipment manufacturers to a 1.5 Billion dollar division of Motorola. Monique is an Adjunct Professor of Marketing at Dowling College in Oakdale and Brookhaven. She holds a Bachelor Degree in Marketing and an MBA in General Management.

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