I have come up with a simple 3-step process to develop online marketing strategies for my clients. I call it my 3 Cs of Social Media: Customer, Content, Capabilities. If you’ve been subscribed for a while or have seen me speak before, you’ve probably heard that. I want to dive a little deeper into each over the next few posts because I really want you to create a strategy that works for your business.

I recently surveyed my audience and asked the question: how do you feel you are doing with your social media, and not one person said they felt they were doing a great job on their own. I’m here to help.

I know that online marketing can be confusing and overwhelming especially with all the different platforms and tools available. We are going to break it down so you can be very focused on what you are doing online in a way that doesn’t take all of your time and gets you REAL results – translation: actual sales.

Ideal Customer Profile SearchSound too good to be true? It’s not. But let’s take it one step at a time and start with the first C: your Customer. We can’t do any marketing if we don’t hone in on who our ideal customer is. There are a number of processes to determine this, and if you were going to school for an MBA, entire classes would be devoted to market research. Here’s the thing: I’m all about actionable intelligence. I don’t want to talk in theories; I want to give you strategies you can implement TODAY. I actually do this stuff every day for my clients – hundreds of them with millions of dollars in revenue.

In fact, I just did a web search on “ideal customer profile” and there were over 19 million results (see image) – talk about confusing!

So let’s go through a little exercise. We need to answer two big questions:

1)  Who are your best customers?

2)  Where are they online? (hint: They may not be on social media.)

Take a minute right now (if you want, you can download the ideal customer profile worksheet) and write down those qualities and characteristics of your ideal customer. Look at your existing customers. Not every customer is your ideal customer. Who are the customers you are most happy with, most successful with, most profitable? This is definitely not everyone in the world. Some possible factors to consider (based on your business)

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Location
  • Stage of life
  • B2C – Interests and hobbies that align with your product
  • B2B – type of business (independent, franchise)
  • B2B – Niche (restaurant, retailers, service providers, CPAs)

Narrowing down some of these general factors will bring you to more specific ones like:

  • B2C:  lifestyle and music preferences
  • B2B: where are they looking for their customers

And the big one: what is their pain that you solve?

That should help you determine the next big question which is where are they online? This is the first piece of the puzzle. Where are they likely to be when you want them to take action – buy from you, subscribe to your newsletter, whatever that major call to action is? If you are a retail business targeting young professionals who are out and about when you want them to take action, then mobile and online review sites are going to play a big part in your strategy. There is no right answer here as long as the platform matches your customer.  Go ahead and download the ideal customer profile worksheet and jot down the characteristics of your ideal customer.

If it helps, here’s a glimpse of my ideal client profile for my high-level one-on-one marketing strategy services:

  • Independent Business Owner
  • In business 2 years or more
  • Wants to harness the power of the Internet to grow their business
  • Not afraid of social media or technology
  • BONUS: likes wine or golf (because then we can hang out)

Let me know about your ideal customer in the comments.

The next post in this series is about developing online content with a focus on customer testimonials.