Ideal customers are a dream. They are successful with your product or service, they don’t take lots of extra work to make them successful, and because they aren’t under pressure at their side, you don’t get them calling you at 5pm on a Friday needing something urgent for Monday.
We believe that ideal clients are the key to business success, they stay with you, reducing reliance on new business. They refer your services to others, and will generally advocate your service. This is why when we have identified an ideal customer, we call them your FANs, your Future Advocate Network.
How do we find more of these?
Sales, Client Services, Marketing, Finance, CRM or Sales Ops should all input to tell us who our ideal customers are.
- Sales tell you who is easiest to sell to.
- Client services tell us who needs the least support, and who is the most successful with your product.
- Marketers have insight. Which content received the most engagement, which pain points are resonating.
- Finance tell us which customers generate the most income.
- Sales Ops / CRM can tell us about conversion rates, sales cycle and close data.
Choose your ideal client companies based on industry, size, location, growth (or department growth) and any other specifics that come through from current ideal clients.
For some targeting there may be certain behaviours or trigger events to look out for
- Other technologies that work well with your product – e.g. we have a client whose technology is already integrated with Salesforce. Although their product works with any CRM, why target anything else when Salesforce users will give him the quickest go lives / income in..?
- Decision maker new in role – for buying cycles that happen primarily when people are new to a company
- For us at P121, we look out for people already active on LinkedIn as we know that a) they will believe in what we do and b) they are more likely to be successful if they are updating their profile
This list could go on and on with examples, it is a case of finding the things specific to your ideal client’s company.
Let’s look at your Stakeholders in your ideal companies.
- Which stakeholders have the most influence? Who holds the budgets?
- Who did you engage with first?
- Of deals lost, who was the blocker? Did you have relationships with anyone who didn’t impact the decision?
For each buyer persona, map out their challenges, objectives, goals, their involvement in the buying process, and where they go for information.
Each stakeholder should receive content tailored to their challenges and how they like to receive their information. This should feed into your Account Based Marketing. (Read my article on whether your business should use Account Based Marketing)
- Outline the problems that are faced by people just like them, your FAN. – The ‘WHY?’
- Then, have your FAN review how they are doing against this backdrop problem. – ‘Is it right for me?’
- Your FAN needs to have a taste of the solution – how you’ve helped others just like them – ‘Who else have you helped?’
After demonstrating this through a mix of marketing content and sales conversations, your FAN will trust you can help them.
The time to check if the FAN is a good fit isn’t once they have signed up, or are ready to have a meeting with you, it is right back at the start, during the selection process.
All the time spent nurturing your FAN has long-term value…. And if they don’t buy from you now, you stay connected, updated and grow your trust, as one day they may well buy from you.
Be good to your FANs, and you will always have a pipeline of people who will work with you one day. When they do, your staff will enjoy working with them, you’ll increase referrals, upsells, cross-sells – and your bottom line.
If you would like us to look at how big your universe of FANs is, then drop me a line, [email protected]