I ask business owners, “Who is a good customer for you?” I find that more than half answer some form of either “Everyone” or “Everyone who wants to buy what I provide.” Disappointing.

If your answer is the same, your marketing activities are equally broad. And ineffective.

A more effective method is target marketing. To do that, you need an avatar.

An avatar is an icon or figure representing a particular person. You might have heard this term used in video games as a specific character the player makes for themself. The result is a recognizable figure, one you can identify and know-how and where to find.

The avatar consists of two parts, demographic and psychographic information. Demographics include statistical information like income, occupation, location, gender, ethnicity, and age. Psychographics classifies people by their beliefs, attitudes, and aspirations and expressed in opinions, behaviors, attitudes, activities, values, and interests.

Instead of a general description of a marketplace (e.g., need for leadership training), an avatar is a description of a specific person (e.g., college graduate, mid-30s, ambitious, management trainee or first-level manager, active in networking, works in professional services industry, enjoys speaking before people).

Or if you are B2B, an avatar can be a specific type of company (e.g., 50 to 150 employees, non-retail, white-collar, fewer than 3 locations, HR department, practices employee training, promotes from within, has revenues of $5m or more, snowballing, CEO and President are different people).

Often the best place to start creating your avatar is taking your best or most successful customer’s profile.

Now that you have an avatar ask yourself things about them like…

• How did you meet them?
• Where did you meet them?
• Where do they work/live?
• What problem did they have that you solved?
• What were the circumstances that caused their problem?
• Why did they buy from you?
• Why do they keep buying from you?
• Where do they go for information?
• Where do they shop?

An avatar becomes a person or business that you can easily recognize and find. And your message becomes more compelling and relevant. Your marketing is more personal, allowing your prospects to see themselves in the message.

Best of all. Your return on investment (ROI) will be higher because you are focusing on who will buy, not who will take your call.

Start the new year using your avatar to grow your business. By the way, if you are thinking of expanding your SEO or social media investments, an avatar is a critical first step.

Blessings for a great holiday season.

Keith

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