If you’re confused about who your target audience is, you’re probably not marketing to them well enough because you’re not speaking their language. It really helps you to have a clear idea of who your ideal customer is, so that you can understand how to talk to them. This is why you need to develop an ideal customer avatar (also known as an ideal client profile). Because defining your customer in this context really helps you to have a killer marketing strategy.
So in this article I’m going to take you through exactly how to develop this and how to use it. As simple as that. But if you want to get this info without reading the whole blog post below, you can check out this video: https://youtu.be/ABzCTKkNLJ4
Here’s a preview:
Just before we start trying to figure out how to identify your ideal client. I want to mention that I’ve put together a template worksheet that will help guide you through this process, and it’s the same one I’ll be using for this blog. So make sure you grab that HERE.
There are two simple pages to the worksheet. The first is about information gathering. We’re going to do our best to pull this information out about our ideal customers.
And then once you have that information you move to the second page which you’ll use to shape the person you’re speaking to.
So, let’s get started by looking at some information on Google Analytics to pinpoint this user.
We’re going to spend all our time on Google Analytics today in the audience tab. That’s the second tab here just under real time.
Age & Gender
Head to the demographics submenu. We can use the overview here to get some generic information about our ideal customer. If you really want to dig down on what the traffic patterns are like for these different age groups or if there’s a difference in activity for gender, etc, you can use the Age and Gender submenus for that information.
And that’s extremely interesting, but just a bit too granular for this stage.
So you can see that there are two big pieces of information. The first one is the age range displayed in a bar chart. You want to identify the top one or the top two age demographics from the chart. If it’s close, pick two. If there’s a clear winner, go with the winner. In this situation, 25 to 34 is a clear runaway, so we’ll update the template with that.
And then you can make the same determination when looking at male versus female – we want to know which one’s the winner. Now, it’s obviously much easier to achieve a 50/50 split when it comes to this particular metric. So if you do have that result, it’s worth considering creating an avatar for each. We’ll discuss that in more detail a bit further down the page. For now, we can see that males more often visit these sites, so we’ll update the template with that info.
Staying in the audiences tab, we’re going to scroll down to Geo>Location. This will show us what countries are sending the most traffic to your site. Now, is this 100% accurate? As with anything online, no it isn’t. For instance, I live in Belgium but I’m an American. Google Analytics would assume I’m Belgian because I’m visiting your site from a Belgian address. Obviously that wouldn’t be accurate, but there’s such a small percentage of the population whose nationality is different from their location, that it wouldn’t be really worth digging into too much (unless that’s the niche you’re targeting).
Now, before we go further, I think it’s important to point out that this information (and all information on Google Analytics) is date dependent. So if you want to be extremely accurate with this information, and especially on your location data, you should look at it based on several different date ranges. I suggest that you look at all-time, the last 6 months, the last 90 days, the last 28 days, and the last seven days, because then you can have a clear idea of the trend. And if your messaging has changed over that time, you can figure that out as well by looking at this range.
Now, you’ll see this report has two sections – a map and a list of countries. The map is colored, and the blue gets darker as the number of visitors from that country increases. In this instance, you can see that the US is the darkest thing on the map.
And this is backed up by the numbers in the countries list further down the page. With this information, we have a pretty good idea that we can say our ideal client is probably from the United States. So we can update the nationality accordingly.
The language is just above the nationality submenu. Now, if you expect to simply see languages like “English” and “Spanish” listed here, then this report is not necessarily going to make sense at first glance. That’s because it actually gets more granular than that. For instance – en-us is English from the US. While en-gb is British English.
Why do they break it down that way? Well, just put yourself in a position where, as an American you’re speaking to a British native (or the opposite if you prefer). It’s kind of a little bit off. You can feel that something is not quite culturally consistent with what you’re used to. There’s certain language that’s used that seems off, the affect might strike you as odd, spelling may be different, etc. So it’s important because, when writing to an audience, you need to speak on their level. So if you’re an American and you’re seeing that you have a huge amount of traffic coming from Great Britain, then it’s going to be important for you to adapt your language to that audience.
In this case, en-us is the winner, so we can list that on the worksheet and keep moving.
The last thing we want to grab in Google Analytics is the user’s interests. Now, you may notice that I skipped a few pieces of information. The reason for this is that Family status, education level, and job title are easier to get on Facebook, so we’ll move there for those categories.
To get to the users’ interests, click on the Interests submenu (just above geo). You’ll notice there are four options, but two of them look like they could be “interests” in their purest form. The first is the affinity categories and the other is in-market segments. Effectively, affinity categories are top-of-funnel, so these are people coming into your site fresh – many never having heard of your before.
In-Market segments, on the other hand are for people who are hot, these people are ready to buy. So this is where people are coming from when they are in that stage just before making a purchase.
Now, for purposes of this ideal customer avatar, because we want to bring more people in, we’re going to use the Affinity Categories, because that’s going to help us identify who we’re supposed to be speaking to at that top level. And in that report I see we’ve got shoppers, movie lovers, and technology. So I’m going to just put all three of those in the worksheet.
That’s it for Google Analytics! Let’s move to Facebook.
Facebook Audience Insights
To get the family status, the professions in the education level, we’re going to use Facebook Audience Insights. This is a really powerful tool. It identifies a lot of realy granular information inside Facebook for Facebook users. And since most of the world are Facebook users, it’s a great resource for identifying your target.
And you can use it specifically to get information on visitors to your Facebook Pages.
Now, that assumes that you have a really strong page.
I’ll tell you up front that I don’t have that. So what you’re seeing is just the Facebook general settings, but I’ll explain the differences here in just a moment.
First, to get there, Go to the business settings, click the hamburger menu on the left and scroll down to audience insights. When you open audience insights, you’ll first be asked whether you want to analyze everyone on Facebook or everyone on your page. So I, again, don’t have a very big page. If I were to click on “everybody connected to your page,” it’s not going to show me anything – it’s going to give me literally no data, because it has nothing to show me. So while I would normally advise against it, we’ll choose everyone on Facebook, just so we can get an idea of what this would show you
You’ll notice there’s a blue chart and a grey one. The blue denotes your percentages, and the grey is Facebook’s. So if Facebook’s site-wide demographics, generally speaking, show that females between 25 and 34 make up 23% of their entire audience, but your page shows a representation of 28%, you’re doing better than the Facebook algorithm for that demographic.
Now, understanding that, We’ll get all the information that we need on this front page here. So relationship status, education level, and job title, or all right here. And the top stats we see are that our audience is Married, has been to University, and are, as the top three professions show, in Production, Arts & Entertainment, or Administrative Services. Just put that information and and we’re good to go!
So this is where you tell the story of your ideal client. Build out this person’s name, age, job, marital status, etc. Then, once you have that basic information worked out, tell a story about him. So what does he do when he wakes up in the morning? What’s his job like? How many kids does he have? Is he happy or not? What kind of pains does he have? Does he want a less hectic life? Does he want a different job?
Anything that you might be able to use to identify the actual client when they’re out in the world so that you can talk to them specifically and build more direct sales.
Putting It Together
Now that you’ve developed all that information, you should have a very clear idea of who your ideal client is.
Now it’s time to put it to use.
When you’re advertising, or writing something on social media, or interacting in any way, you need to be talking to that person. Just imagine the person that you just created in your mind, sitting in front of you, what are you going to tell them to sell to them? What does the college kid want to hear? How is that different from what a mom in the suburbs wants to hear?
The pains are different.
The wants are different.
The goals are different.
Everything is different based on the person that’s sitting in front of you. So you need to figure out how to speak to that person so you can tell them what they want to hear.
Final Point – Multiple Avatars
Now, I do also want to say, you can feel free to create several ideal client profiles. Just make sure that you have a hero ideal client profile. This is one that you’re targeting most often. Ancillary ideal clients will help you broaden your market, but the hero is the more important target you have, and will force you to form your marketing strategy around it.