Last week I talked about why it’s important to create a client persona for your business. If you missed the post on why you need a client persona, go back and read it in case you’re not sure if you really need one.
But today I want to share some ways that you can narrow down a client persona in a way that will really help your business.
When you’re creating a client persona the easiest place to start is with their physical profile. Envision what your ideal client physically looks like and start writing it down. You’ll include everything from his or her gender to age to hair color. Think about how you see your ideal client and write down every small nugget of information that you can find.
- Here’s a hint from my upcoming client mini-course: write each letter of the alphabet on a piece of paper and try to come up with an attribute for each letter.
Some of you might be wanting to skip this step because you’re thinking either that you’re stereotyping your clients or that physical attributes don’t matter, but I want to ask you to stop and think about this for a second. How will you know if the people who you include in images related to your brand are people who your ideal client identifies with if you don’t know what your client looks like? People, whether good or bad, like to see themselves reflected in the advertising and marketing for the things that they buy. So, if you’re not sure what your ideal client looks like, you won’t be able to create images that they identify with.
If you feel like you really can’t narrow down the physical attributes of your ideal client into one persona, then consider making no more than three ideal clients and giving each of them physical characteristics. You would assume in this situation that their other attributes are the same and it’s just their physical attributes that differ. When you’re running through ideal client scenarios in your head, you would just envision these few clients as best friends and consider them as a group.
After you have identified the physical attributes of your ideal client, move one to the relational attributes. The types of things you want to identify with these are what your client’s family looks like, who they associate with, and how they interact with other people.
- Another hint from my upcoming client mini-course: write down the numbers 0 through 15 and come up with an attribute for each number (for example, 3 kids or 15 hours of work a week.)
When you’re thinking about the relationships that your ideal client has, don’t forget to think of their relationships outside of their immediate family. This might include their parents, siblings, best friends, acquaintances at their child’s school, or work relationships. You’re thinking through all of these things to help you build a more rounded picture of your ideal client.
Another area of your ideal client that you want to consider is their location. Where they live in the country will determine not only their climate and seasons but also what kind of topics are generally discussed and what extra’s like sports or activities they are involved in.
- My hint from my upcoming client mini-course for this set of attributes is to draw 5-10 concentric circles and describe the locations of your client in each of those circles moving further and further away from your client.
You not only want to focus on your client’s physical location, but also their online location when you’re thinking about “location.” Which social media sites does your client frequent and what do they use to check their email? Are they even on some social media sites? All of this information will help you narrow down your marketing strategies as you work to find and connect with your ideal client.
Hopefully these three areas will help you create your client persona in a way that is natural and helpful. I’ve found client persona’s to be one of the most simplifying things that I’ve done in my business. Once I had a very detailed client persona, it became easy to filter every decision based on whether it would appeal to my ideal client or not.
Don’t worry about excluding people when you come up with your client persona! Unless you choose to share the information, no one will ever know what your ideal client looks like. And much of your content will attract not only your ideal client but also those who share some similar attributes.