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Are you focusing on the right people?

image to support article: focus your marketing

As we all emerge from lockdown, you need to focus

If money is tight, you cannot afford to scattergun your marketing activity. If you do, it will be ineffective. Even if you have got some money spare, why waste it?  To get the best return on investment from the time and money you have available, it has to be focused.

Who should you focus on?

If I were a psychologist, I’d say: who do you want to focus on?  But I’m not, so I won’t. The best people to focus your marketing on are:

  1. People who are similar to your current clients.
  2. People in a similar geographic area to you

Easiest to impress

As we all emerge from lockdown and money is tight, we want to get the best we can for our money. Your target audience will be acting in a very similar way, so they will be looking for suppliers they believe can deliver on their promises. If you can show them you’ve delivered for a number of clients who are very similar to them, they will be much more inclined to believe you can do the same for them. Of course, you will need the evidence to back up your claims – more on that later.

Easiest to get to

If you are selling a service, chances are you will have to go to the prospect at some point very soon. Either as part of the sales process (maintaining social distance rules, of course) or to deliver part, or all, of the service. People who are close to you take less time and less money to get to. Far better to travel 10-20 miles than 2-300!

Of course, you can still do much of the sales process remotely. Phone, email and your preferred flavour of video conferencing will enable you to make sales, but lockdown won’t last forever (we hope), so those closest to you will be easier to account manage going forward too.

Once you start making sales, you can either add additional target audiences or increase geographical coverage, because you will have the budgets to do so.

Of course, you can always leave that boring stuff to us. Call us on 020 8634 5911 for any enquiries.

From Ideal Client to Target Audience

Moving from Ideal Client to Target Audience

Last week’s blog defined an Ideal Client and the fact that having a solid definition of who (it is always a who) is your Ideal Client helps you to focus your marketing and be more effective. Now let’s look at what happens when you market to this highly focused group.

Let’s define your target audience as HR Directors of UK companies in Information Technology.

Let’s imagine your service helps HR Directors to assess the skills and attitude of developers via an online portal. Although there are lots of developers out there, finding one with the right mix of skills is not easy. Your reason for targeting companies with HR Directors is purely size.  These companies probably recruit developers regularly as they look to grow their development team or simply replace those that leave.
LinkedInAccording to LinkedIn, there are currently 532 in the UK-based HR Directors of IT companies.

You have developed a series of key messages that talk of how you can help these HR Directors. You have a convincing set of evidence which proves you can walk the walk. Your marketing programme aims directly at these 532 (or more) HR Directors of UK-based IT companies.

Let’s now look at who else your key messages are likely to resonate with:

 

UK HR Directors

Depending upon just how your application is written, I am sure that every other HR Director in the country also worries about recruiting the right people with the right skills and attitude.

Maybe you’ve done some work for companies who aren’t in the IT sector and could use that evidence to talk to other HR Directors if they get in touch.

There are 4,066 HR Directors in the UK.

UK HR Managers

Companies that don’t put enough credence into the HR role may only have a HR Manager, or they may be a little smaller than your Ideal Client. They still have issues in recruiting good staff and your application may be able to help them.

There are 58,932 HR Managers in the UK

So far we haven’t even left the UK and the marketing programme you develop to focus on just 532 people may resonate with a further 63,000 people.

Your outbound marketing will be aimed specifically at your core audience, but the supporting content marketing and inbound activity is highly likely to generate 78 enquiries from within this audience of 63,000.

Would you turn them away?

Richard Branson is not your Ideal Client. Who is?

Richard Branson is not your Ideal ClientIf you could have anyone in the world buy your product or services, who would it be?

If I asked this question to 100 people, chances are 30%+ would say Richard Branson (or another very rich person). Another 30-40% would say “as many people as possible”. 10-15% would say “I don’t know really”, with just a small percentage of people being able to give a good description of an ideal client. They may even name someone.

Let’s address the Richard Branson issue first:

  • Richard Branson is the figurehead for the Virgin group of companies but spends most of his time on not for profit activities.
  • He has management teams within every company to buy new products and services and so is highly unlikely to be the decision maker.
  • I don’t believe he is the sort of person who will tell his senior team that they “have to buy” something. He may introduce you.

Richard, if you do read this, I’d love your opinion!

Anyway, back to your Ideal Client.

Your network is a good source of opportunities and leads for your business. Do you think that if you gave them a good description (or even a name) of your Ideal Client, it would help them to find more, or better, leads for you?

Next week’s blog will talk more about how you move from Ideal Client to Target Audience, but let me touch on it just a little now.

Having an Ideal Client doesn’t mean that they are the only people you want to sell to. If you want to talk to, for example, HR Directors of large SMEs in London, I bet they face very similar issues to HR Directors of large SMEs in Birmingham or Brighton. I bet these people within small Enterprise level businesses also have the same issues. Would you turn them away? Didn’t think so..

 Your Ideal Client is:

  1. The decision maker within the type of company you want to sell into.
  2. This company will have a real need for what you sell, and
  3. You will be able to clearly show them how you provide a solution to a problem within their business.
  4. This company will be in your geographic area (whatever that may be).
  5. They are likely to be in an industry sector where you have a great deal of experience, unless you are entering a new market.

Having an Ideal Client enables you to focus. It means you can identify their pains/needs/issues/wants and develop the messages you need to communicate how your solution can help them. It helps you to engage with the people most likely to buy from you.

Just in case you’re wondering, this is mine:

The Owner/Managing Director of a technology business that is committed to growth and who doesn’t have a senior Marketing Manager/Director in the business. They will be based within 20 miles of my office in Croydon and have been trading for at least three years.

Having said this, I have clients in Manchester. I have clients who sell holidays and coaching and have worked with retailers of gardening equipment and veterinary services. Just because my marketing is focused on my Ideal Client, it doesn’t mean it will not resonate with others and encourage them to get in touch.

 

I hope this helps.

What does your ideal client look like?

I know I’ve written about this before but I thought I would add a little more as it has arisen a number of times recently in conversation with prospects and clients.

In order to effectively market your services you need an accurate description of your ideal client(s). If you target multiple audiences, simply do this for each audience.

A basic description would consist of eight points:

  1. Name
  2. Job Title
  3. Company Name
  4. Company Size – revenue and staff count
  5. Office address
  6. Incorporation date
  7. What do they sell?
  8. Who do they sell it to?

When I say this to some people they ask why do they need to be so specific; why the name? For me it helps to picture the person when developing a marketing strategy to target your ideal client. Obviously you aren’t looking to only talk to one specific company, but there will be a good number of companies with very similar profiles.

If you enjoy networking, whether online or in person, knowing the job title will help you choose the best events or discussion groups to attend or take part in.  The same goes for what they sell and who they sell to. If you are a regular member of networking groups such as BNI, the job title, company name and industry sector will help your fellow members to make better referrals.

The job title, company size and incorporation date will help you identify what’s important to them and the issues they face and how you can help them.