Updated: Jan 30
As a small business owner, your website is one of your most valuable marketing tools... If you target the right people! Today, we're talking about avatars.
No, not that one! 🤣 Ideal client avatars and why you should create one for your website.
We're continuing our series about getting your small business ready to launch or refresh your website. If you missed the last video, be sure to check it out HERE. We talked about WHY you need a website for your business. Today we're going to be talking about WHO is coming to your site.
Once you know why you're setting up your website and what your goals are, you can focus on who your target audience is - this could be the same or slightly different than your regular business or social media audience. For example, if, say, you have a YouTube channel with tutorials for multiple programs, but you create a digital product that's templates for one of those particular programs then you may have a website with a subset of that total audience.
Let's talk briefly about the importance of doing this ideal client exercise, and then we'll get into the nitty-gritty of how you would actually do it. One of the reasons this exercise is so important is that it helps you target and focus your marketing and your message to the people who are most likely to want to work with or buy from you. It also allows you to connect with your audience more authentically and build that Know Like, and Trust factor that is so important in relational marketing.
If you do this right, your audience will think that you are reading their minds. You can meet them where they're at and solve their problems with your offer.
There's a couple of ways to start out this ideal client exercise. It really depends on the audience that you have as well as the audience that you want. If you have some current clients, do an honest assessment with your team - solopreneurs, ask a trusted friend for help with this one! Do you want to keep working with the same type of client or do you want to develop a new avatar?
If you don't have any clients yet, or if you're looking to develop a new avatar, here are a few questions that you can use to get started. Thinking from the perspective of your ideal client avatar:
· What are their top priorities or interests?
· What are they passionate about?
· What are some of their biggest pain points?
· What keeps them up at night?
Let's take a look at what it really feels like to walk through these exercises with a client. My sister loves to crochet and we thought it would be fun to walk through this as if a small yarn shop was reaching out to her as a client.
Going to the first question of what are your top priorities or interests as a client of a yarn shop, here's what we came up with. My sister, as a client, would look for customer service and responsiveness. She also would be looking for a yarn shop that was local. She likes people that dye their own or have access to good inventory or stock brands that she knows and likes. She said basically a lot of yarn shops have similar items, but they do something called a yarn tour. If she goes to a new place she likes to go to all of the different yarn shops in the area. I don't know if that's just specific to this industry, but I thought that was kind of fun and unique.
This is the type of thing that a yarn shop owner could use and utilize on their website. They would want to highlight their excellent customer service, their hours, and possibly have a form to show how responsive they are. They also want to have a good website with inventory on the stock and the brands that they have available.
Moving on to the next question in our ideal client exercise, I asked my sister as a yarn shop client, what are you passionate about? She said that one of the things she's passionate about is being creative and finding lots of new patterns and designs to try. She would hope that the yarn shop would have classes and workshops available to support this, have samples out of things that they could try or be inspired by, again, also looking for local connections as a yarn shop owner. This again is something that you could utilize on your website, having an event calendar, being able to display some of the samples and things that you have available in your shop.
The next question that we would ask in our ideal client exercise is what are your biggest pain points? My sister said that some of her biggest pain points with regard to her yarn hobby are not being able to find the right yarn that she's looking for, whether that's color or the weight or the specific brand. Of course, price is going to be a big pain point as in many businesses. And the other thing that was kind of surprising to me was that she finds a lot of yarn shops to be kind of intimidating or overwhelming, especially for people who are coming into this a little bit new. That is definitely something that could be addressed from a yarn shop owner’s perspective. There's not a lot they could do to compete on price, but if they have something that they’re having a sale on or something like that, it can definitely be put on their website, and again, inventory being available to search would be amazing. If they have something that they can highlight regarding the friendliness of their staff or something that highlights how helpful they are and welcoming, that would definitely be something that they would want to advertise on their website as well.
The last question that we talked about in this ideal client exercise is what keeps them up at night. Meaning, if you address this challenge that they have, they would really feel like "you are inside my head, this business gets me. I am going to be loyal to this business." In talking with my sister, this one was very interesting and I didn't really know exactly what she was talking about, because I'm not a knitter 😉, but I imagine if the yarn shop heard these, they would totally get it! And it would be something that would be totally relatable between the business and the clients.
My sister talked about dropped stitches, something called swatching, weaving, and ends. And then the idea of trying to figure all this stuff out on their own, as a new person coming into knitting, crocheting, that kind of stuff. My idea for a yarn shop owner would be doing some blogging about some of these things. I asked my sister, “if you were checking out a new yarn shop and you saw that they had done a post on swatching, would you feel like that business totally got you and related and would you feel like you could trust them?” and she said, she definitely would feel more connected to that business.
That's just another way that a small business can connect with their ideal clients. It may seem counterintuitive to make your audience smaller, but when you narrow it down to your ideal client avatar and focus your marketing efforts there, you'll be reaching the people who truly value what you're offering. And you'll convert more of your website visitors into leads and sales.
Be sure to come back next week for part three of this series, where I’ll be talking about the VOICE of your brand. If you want to get a jumpstart on prepping for your website lunch, be sure to grab my website prep checklist HERE.
Let me know in the comments, do you have an ideal client avatar already or will you be doing this exercise?