How To Create A Client Avatar That Builds A Profitable Business
I know, I know. I can practically hear you groaning at the mention of those two little words!
‘Client avatar’ is a term you have probably heard a lot.
And, if you had been in business for any length of time, you will no doubt have created multiple versions of your ideal client avatar already. But, how do you work out what type of client you should be basing this avatar on in the first place?
Well, you want to base it on a client that will enable you to build a profitable business, but also one that you can fall and stay in love with.
Otherwise, why are you in business in the first place?
So, how do you create this seemingly mythical ideal client avatar?
Well, I've been doing this for quite a while now and I've identified the three key characteristics that you want to include when creating the kind of client avatar that will help your business grow.
Let me explain what they are…
The Importance Of Nailing Your Client Avatar
This is not your first rodeo, you know that client avatars are super important for marketing your business. As you already know, they help you get really targeted in your messaging.
That way, when your ideal client sees any of your marketing material, instantly they say, "yes you are talking to me".
In other words, they connect and resonate with you.
But, that is not the only benefit of a well crafted avatar. It can also be really helpful for establishing the key pain points of your prospective clients, allowing you to design services to really meet their needs.
Finally, an avatar is also super helpful for helping you identify the real value of the services you provide to your clients.
So, it's important that you've got a really clear idea of who your ideal client is.
But, how do you choose which of those ideal clients you are going to base this avatar on?
Creating A Profitable Client Avatar
Marketing 101 is to create your avatar drawing on the characteristics of one of your existing clients. That makes sense, as you already have an intimate knowledge of them. However, trying to figure out which of those clients you should base your avatar on can be a bit of a challenge!
This whole exercise is completed to ensure you end up with a business that is super profitable, that you love working in, and are working with people that you love to serve.
So, you don’t want to invest all that time and energy on the wrong person!
Luckily, I’ve got you covered! There are three characteristics that you want to look for when trying to figure out who to base your ideal client avatar on...
The first criteria is an easy one. You want to base your avatar on the clients that you love working with.
This kind of seems like a no brainer, but it's a really easy one to miss.
There is no point in building a business model around clients you really don't enjoy working with, right? Surrounding yourself with dud clients is a sure-fire way to create burnout and resentment, plus lose all the mojo for your business!
So number one is, have a think about the clients you just love working with. The ones that get you up in the morning, excited to work and talk with, and most of all, excited to support and serve.
Who are they?
Write them down as we want to find more of them!
Once you have considered who you love working with, it is time to look at criteria number two, those that you get the best results with.
You can deliver the same service, the same approach, and the same methods to multiple clients in the same industry. But, some clients are going to take what you've taught them and fly. They are going to do amazing things and get amazing results.
Somebody else might take the exact same thing and simply not do anything with it (or not as much with it, anyway). And it can be a little bit hard to figure out why that is.
Really, it’s because they are just not in a place to actually take what you've taught them or done for them and take it to the next level. But, it still feels baffling that seemingly similar clients can generate vastly different results.
If you look closely enough though, there will be a clear reason.
So, when building your avatar, you want to identify the characteristics that differentiate those clients who you get amazing results with, from those clients that got either no results or mediocre results.
Could it be that they are more established in their business, they are a more practical personality, or that they are at a certain age or stage of life?
Once you have established the characteristics of the clients you get amazing results with, put them straight into your avatar.
Now that we have established who you love to work with and who you can get amazing results for, it’s time to look at criteria number 3. This is a really important criteria when it comes to the profitability of your business.
It’s thinking about the kind of clients, whether they're individuals or organisations, that value what you do enough to pay you what you're worth.
When doing the avatar thing, a lot of people will tick off the first two criteria easily. But, they kind of forget (or choose to ignore) the third. But, the third criteria is the one that is really important for having a profitable, scalable long-term business.
Now, when I talk about value in this sense, I am not talking about which people you think can afford you. That is a whole different kettle of fish!
I am talking about those individuals or organisations that are in a place to value you and to also value themselves enough to invest in your services.
It's also helpful to identify those individuals or organisations that are in a position to get a real return on their investment with your business as well.
Some people will just not be in that place yet. In time, you can build services that help to address the needs of these kinds of clients.
But for your core services, you want to identify those individuals or organisations that are in a place to value what you do enough to pay you what you're worth.
What About The Non-Ideal Clients?
Creating a client avatar and using it in your marketing means that you have a greater chance of attracting the kind of people you want to work with towards your business.
However, just because you are creating this client avatar, it doesn’t mean that you should suddenly stop working with people who don't quite fit within the three main criteria.
Obviously you don’t want to fill your books with the dud clients we mentioned above! But, if someone is a good fit for you and you want to work with them, then work with them. That's absolutely fine.
Ideal client avatars simply help you to focus your energy and marketing on attracting more clients that meet your criteria.
So, the end result is that the bulk of your clients are people who you love working with, who you get the best results with, and who value what you do enough to pay you what you're worth.
Getting Started On Creating An Avatar That Works
Even if you have completed this exercise in the past, I would encourage you to complete it again with the three criteria in mind.
If you have been in business for a while, think about those clients that you've worked with that tick the three boxes. Pay particular attention to the characteristics that differentiate them from the clients that don't tick the boxes.
Build your client avatar around those.
If you are just starting out in business, then you might not have the past client base to draw on for inspiration. But, that doesn’t mean you can't complete this task. Rather, just think about who you believe those clients might be.
Remember that avatars are a bit of a hypothesis. So, start with what you think is true, then test it and revise it as you go along.
Avatars Are A Pricing Tool
Client avatars are usually classed as a marketing tool. But in reality, they are an ‘everything’ tool, including a pricing tool.