Why Knowing Your Ideal Customers Is Important

The Idea of an “Ideal Customer”.

One of the most important parts of any business is knowing your ideal customer. It’s not enough to just have customers, but it is crucial that you have customers who are interested in what you have to offer. The more specific and niche your product or service is, the easier it will be for you to find these people—and once you do, they will become fiercely loyal fans who continue buying from you over and over again.

Knowing Your Ideal Customer is the 1st Step to Success.

Understanding your ideal customer will help you make better decisions when it comes to marketing and selling. If you know who they are, what they care about, their challenges and what they value, then it’s easy to see how this knowledge can be used to grow your business.

Think about it this way: If you’re speaking with someone who isn’t interested in listening, then that conversation isn’t going anywhere. Even if you have something important to say or offer them—like a free sample of something—they won’t care until all the groundwork has been laid for them first. If someone doesn’t understand who their ideal audience is or why it matters so much, then it’s unlikely that person will take action today or tomorrow (or ever).


Demographics Aren’t Evertything!

You definitely need to know your ideal customer demographics. This means knowing basic information like their age, gender, location and income level. But it’s not enough just to know these things about your customers—you need to understand what makes them tick on an emotional level as well.

To do this, you can look at psychographics (those who make up the “personality” of your customers). Psychographic data includes things like personality traits and values, lifestyle preferences and behaviors. It can tell you more about why someone buys from you than just a demographic profile ever could: for example, by looking at psychographics you might find out that your ideal customer is an introvert who loves cooking or someone who lives in an urban setting but still loves the great outdoors. You can then use this very niche & personal information to speak directly to individuals and make them feel your vision & passion from within.


When We Say “Ideal Customer” We Need to Dig Deep.

When you start to get a really good description of your ideal customer, you will actually envision an image of your ideal customer—someone who looks like you and thinks like you. But that’s not enough. Your ideal audience is more than just demographics.

Your goal is to find out how to speak directly to the people who are most likely to buy from you, but even if someone seems like they should be part of your target market (say, because they have characteristics that align with one of your target markets), they might not be interested in what you’re offering.


An Ideal Customer…

Is a real person (obviously, but bots do exist).

They have a personality, they have a story, they may or may not have a job, they have a life of their own. They may also be married or single, have children or live with roommates in an apartment complex or in the suburbs and their favorite color could be red or green or blue. An ideal audience member is someone who has problems that your product or service can solve for them, as well as being somebody that you & your brand feel connected enough to that you’d want to spend time talking with them about solving those problems.


An Ideal Customer Also…

  • Is a good fit for your company culture. The first step in finding the right people to target is identifying the sort of customers you want. If they don’t match up with the company’s values or culture, they are unlikely to be an effective “fit” for your business and may even be a negative influence on its reputation.
  • Has a need for your product or service. People who aren’t interested in what you’re offering won’t become customers. The best way to uncover unmet needs is through market research like surveys and interviews.
  • Has a budget for your product or service. Obviously, this one depends on what it is: someone can have all kinds of money but no interest in buying something from you; conversely, someone might be broke but still willing to buy something from you if it works out well enough at scale! So while this factor isn’t always necessary—especially if there are other factors working in favor of having them as customers—it can definitely help narrow down who exactly needs what kind of thing before taking action towards any resulting goals (like getting new clients).


Last, but Not Least…

An ideal customer is someone who feels like he or she is not getting what they need from their current options and is looking for a solution to that problem. If you can find and speak to these people, you’ll be miles ahead of your competitors.

What is an IAP?

So, let’s talk about the term IAP. What IAP stands for is “ideal audience person.” It’s a person who is likely to buy your product or service and get the most value from it. They are your ideal customer or audience.

To find out who your IAPs are, ask yourself these questions:

  • Why would they want this? What problem does this solve for them?
  • What stage in their life are they in? Are they married with children or just starting a family? Are they retired and looking for ways to make their golden years more enjoyable, productive and meaningful? Or do they have no kids at home but still want something fulfilling to do during their free time?


How to Find Your IAP?

To find your ideal audience, you’ll need to do customer research. There are several ways to do this:

  • Use a customer profiling template like the one we’ve provided below.
  • Use a customer discovery tool like Survey Monkey or Typeform.
  • Use a customer acquisition tool like AdWords or Facebook Ads Manager.
  • Use a customer retention tool like Customer.io or Intercom.
  • And of course, utilize Shillbirds services to help you find & retain your ideal customers


Ask the People You Already Know!

The first step to identifying your ideal audience is to look at the customers you already have. What are they like? How do they behave? Are they similar to one another, or are there differences between them?

The answers to these questions can help you identify a group of people who share some commonalities (like age, gender, or location) and whose needs align with your product/service offerings. This can be helpful when it comes time to reach out on social media. Creating engaging content that resonates with the interests and lifestyles of your IAP is a great way to build relationships with potential prospects.


How Did They Find You?

When you are speaking with a customer, it’s important to know how they found you. Were they searching for a product like yours? Did your website pop up in their social media feed? Did someone else refer them to you? Understanding this will help give insight into what information needs to be shared with the customer and where your efforts are best directed.

It’s also beneficial to understand where your potential customers have been spending time online before coming across your brand. This can lead to some valuable information about what kinds of posts or content resonate well with them, as well as how they prefer receiving that content (text vs video or email vs Twitter). Technical analytics are an invaluable resource for not only tracking which type of content performs best at what times and where users are finding your content, but that’s not all. Thorough analytics that are properly utilized can reveal critical details about who exactly is consuming your content and what type of people continue coming back for more from you. If you are questioning the effectiveness of analytics or are unsure what they are or where to start, you may want to take a look at our article on “Social Media Analytics” and find out whether or not they are worth the effort for you.


What Would Compel Them to Use You?

How do you know what your customers want?

  • What do they need?
  • How can you help them with their pain points?
  • What are their values and beliefs?
  • Do they have a goal, aspiration or dream that you can help them achieve?


People React to Emotions; Not Things.

People don’t buy products. They buy emotions.

People don’t buy a solution to every problem they have; they buy solutions that make them feel good.

The most successful brands in the world—Apple, Coca-Cola, Nike—have all understood this fundamental fact and crafted their business strategies accordingly: positioning their products as solutions to deep-rooted emotional needs that resonate with consumers’ personalities, lifestyles and values.


Who Should Be Your Customer?

Next, you want to look at people who aren’t yet customers but probably should be, based on their needs and desires. These are the people who have a similar profile as your ideal customer but haven’t yet made the decision to buy from you. They’re further down the sales funnel than those who have already purchased from you, so they may not have as much information about your product or service.

To find these potential new customers, think about where else they might be spending their time online:

  • If you’ve created content that addresses their needs and interests, search engines will show them when they search for similar keywords (even without including your exact keyword).
  • Social media groups like those on LinkedIn or Facebook can help put you in front of people who share similar interests with those who are currently purchasing from you or your competitors. Look for groups where current buyers congregate around topics related to yours; this will give you an idea of what types of questions these individuals ask each other and what their level of knowledge is—and if there’s any room for improvement!


To learn exactly how you can turn your ideal customer into a paying customer take a look at this article we published on How to Generate Quality Leads.


Identifying Your IAP Will Allow You to Connect with Them Deeply.

Ultimately, knowing exactly who your ideal customer is will help you craft better messages for them, which will help you reach them more effectively. Knowing who they are has also been shown to make businesses more profitable. As such, it’s important not just that your customers know who you are & what you do, but that you know who they are as well—perhaps better than they know themselves.

It’s Not Rocket Science!

In conclusion, knowing your ideal customer is vital to your success as a business. It helps you connect with them, build trust and loyalty, and grow your business. The more you know about them—their demographics, psychographics, needs & wants—the easier it will be for you to reach out and serve them better than anyone else can.