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Do you really know your customers?

 

Think about the biggest player (or biggest competitor) right now in your industry and think about how they communicate.  Does their messaging remain consistent and appear to be laser targeted?

 

How about their product offering?  Is it super specific on point every time? There is a bunch of noise on the internet about “knowing” your customer.

 

Where do you think you will be one year from now if you continue to use characteristics like this:

  • Gender
  • Job Title
  • Location
  • Income
  • Social Status
  • Economic
  • Who they like or follow on social

Those characteristics may be OK if you are running an ad and need to do some segmentation. But if you really want to know about your customer, here are the things that you SHOULD be focusing on:

  • Identity
  • Beliefs
  • Values
  • Fears
  • Frustrations
  • Motivations

What characteristic do you believe is most important to know about your customer?

 

How I found out my messaging was TERRIBLE

 

I have always been a believer in e-mail marketing and leading with value

 

In almost all of my companies and business interests (either as a mentor, coach, investor or executive) we employ a very robust system of communication that ensure the company stays front of mind with existing and potential customers. E-mail systems are great about assessing metrics like open rates and click through rates, but they really don’t tell a great story when someone “Previews” an e-mail, quickly deleting it with a swipe of a finger

 

But, I found out the absolute painful way that our messaging and insight into our customer was way off….

 

…..and it cost me a significant amount of money

 

The company that I learned this in was a Value Added Reseller of a pretty cool technology.  The sales system was pretty robust and the value proposition was pretty clear. We hypothesized the customer would benefit from a 2 day on site training program that would allow them to dive deeper into the equipment

 

So, we spent about 20k developing the courseware, training the instructors and developing material. Where we went way wrong was not actually ASKING the customer what they wanted, or doing the work on discovering what their pain points were

 

As I, like many entrepreneurs, found out the hard way- the thing that the customer WANTED wasn't the same thing as what I thought the customer needed. It was an expensive lesson, but a lesson learned nonetheless.

 

Now, instead of spending a single dollar on any product development I make sure that we focus on knowing and defining our Struggling Avatar for our ideal client

 

How clear are you on what motivates your customers?

The 1 key shift I made that resulted in $36,000 of sales in one week

 

E-mail after E-mail after E-mail, there are literally hundreds of e-mails that I don’t even open in a single day

 

Most of them go to spam anyway and if not I probably delete half of what makes it to my inbox without reading it anyway. We all generally know that the subject line of the e-mail is very important, but then what?

 

Most e-mails start right off going into the value of their product or service instead of providing the “What’s In It For Me(WIIFM)?” for their customers. As you’ll soon discover, once we made the investment of truly understanding our Struggling Avatar and having a plan to communicate with them. Here’s the process that we undertook to fully define what motivates our customer and now every single e-mail that goes out is answering a specific value that the ideal client has

 

On a single piece of paper we put the model of the ideal customer in the middle. Then, we drew lines to circles representing the following categories:

 

  • Loves
  • Fears
  • Hates
  • Excites
  • Motivates

 

Next, we brainstormed for each category what 6-10 items were the most likely for each area which gave is almost a hundred different ideas about what motivated the client. From there, we defined the characteristics that had the highest impact on the way they conducted business.

 

And finally, we narrowed it down to the top 5 values

 

So how did I make 36k in one week?  With a simple email sequence- 5 days in a row that talked FIRST about each of those values, and THEN connected them to a specific benefit of the product.  A simple call to action led them to a landing page.

 

So the shift was very simply investing some time into truly knowing what was most important for our customers and speaking to THEM instead of telling them about US.

 

How well do you know your customers?

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