Understanding Your Target Market: The Blueprint for Creating Your Perfect Customer Avatar

Creating Your Perfect Customer Avatar

Picture this: You just started your own home business and you are SO excited to get your first customer. You post on social media, you create a newsletter, you pin some things on Pinterest. But… it’s crickets. You can’t seem to gain any traction. Why?

It might be because you are targeting the wrong market. Do you know who your ideal customer actually is? Where they hang out? What their problems are, and how you are going to solve them?

This is why creating a customer “avatar,” or a “target market,” or an “ideal customer profile” is so important.

In this post, we’ll go over what a customer avatar is, how you can create the best one for your business, and how it will help you find your perfect clients… and help them find you as well.

The Significance of Customer Avatars

Creating a customer avatar is crucial when starting a new business for several reasons:

  • Targeted Marketing: By understanding your ideal customer’s demographics, psychographics, and behaviors, you can tailor your marketing messages to resonate specifically with them. This targeted approach is more likely to get their attention and generate interest in your products or services. You’ll be able to ask yourself: Would this ______ (blog post, product, email, social media post) appeal to my avatar?
  • Better Use of Your Resources: Knowing who your perfect customer is helps you use your resources more effectively. You can focus your efforts on the channels and strategies that are most likely to reach and engage your target audience, stopping you from wasting your time and money on less effective avenues.
  • Product Development: Understanding your customer avatar allows you to develop products or services that directly meet their needs and preferences. This increases your likelihood of success.
  • Customer Relationships: When you understand your customers on a deeper level, you can build stronger relationships with them. You know their preferences and values, which helps create a positive and lasting connection.
  • Competitive Advantage: A well-defined customer avatar can give you a competitive advantage by allowing you to differentiate your business from competitors. By addressing the unique needs and desires of your target audience, you position yourself as a brand that truly understands and cares about its customers.
  • Effective Decision-Making: When faced with business decisions, having a clear customer avatar serves as a guide. It helps you evaluate options based on how well they align with your target audience’s preferences and needs.

Basically, you want to find the people you want to work with, and (I know this sounds scary, but…) repel those you don’t. When you are able to personalize your message, those who get it, will get it.

Steps to Creating the Perfect Customer Avatar

Great, so how do we figure out our customer avatar? Well, the first step is to research and collect some data. If you already have a business or a social media following, for instance, take a look at who those people are.

If this is a new business, brainstorm who is it you want to help. Be as specific as possible. This step is typically easier if you fit your own market (or a version of you from the past) but it’s not necessary.

Here are some things to consider:

Demographics

  • Age Range
  • Gender
  • Education
  • Job Status
  • Income
  • Family Status (martial status, children, pets, etc)
  • Geographic location (U.S. based, international, etc)
  • Home ownership (Do they rent, own, live with family)

Psychographics

  • Interests and Hobbies:
    • What are they interested in?
    • What do they spend their free time learning about and doing?
    • Examples: Travel, Crafting, Sustainable Living, Fitness Enthusiasts, Foodies, Photography, Gardening, Gaming, Reading, Painting
  • Values:
    • What is important to them?
    • What gives them purpose or meaning?
    • Examples: Environmental Consciousness, Social Justice Advocacy, Family Values, Innovation, Education
  • Beliefs:
    • What beliefs do they have?
    • Do they have a community that shares their beliefs?
    • Examples: Spiritual Beliefs, Minimalism, Equality, Positive Thinking
  • Lifestyle Choices:
    • What priorities do they have?
    • What decisions have they consciously made that impact their life?
    • Examples: Remote Workers, Urban Dwellers, Outdoor Enthusiasts, Digital Nomads, Homebodies
  • Desires and Goals
    • What do want to change about their life?
    • What are their biggest goals
    • Examples: Time Freedom, Financial Freedom, Own a Business, Stop a Bad Habit, Start a Good Habit
  • Behavioral Traits:
    • How do they research products, make purchasing decisions, and interact with brands.
    • How do they stay up-to-date on news and information?
    • What are their favorite apps and websites?
    • What social media platforms do they use?
  • Pain Points, Fears, and Objections
    • What do they struggle with?
    • Why haven’t they made the changes necessary for their goals yet?
    • Examples: Not enough time, overwhelmed, not enough money, will this waste my time or money, do this person really know what they are talking about, can they actually help me succeed, I don’t know how, I don’t know where to start.

Creating a Persona

Once you have gathered and brainstormed all the information above, you should have a pretty good idea of who your customer is. Now, give them a name. No, really.

For instance, my customer avatar is Whitney.

Once you have a name, write up a brief description of this person and their life. Here’s mine:

Whitney is a 34-year-old stay-at-home mom. She has a degree in early childhood education and worked for several years as a preschool teacher.

She now has two boys, ages 3 and 6. She quit teaching after she had her first son.

She wants more out of life. She loves being with her boys and feels so grateful that she has been able to be home with them. But she also feels like she is losing herself. She wants to remember that she was a person before becoming a mom. She is just starting to get back into hobbies and taking time for herself now that she doesn't have to change diapers anymore. She could go back to teaching once her youngest goes to school, but she's not sure she wants to.

Her husband is 36 and works as a corporate manager. Life is busy and money is okay, but it is a little tight.

She's been interested in learning how to start her own business, so she has more flexibility with her time and potential income. But she doesn't know where to start. She is well educated, but not in the areas of business building, social media marketing, or product/service selection.

She's not sure what she can offer yet, but she's starting to dig into lots of ideas to see what sounds right.

She also misses having a community. She has a few close friends, but everyone is busy having kids and moving for work and she doesn't feel as close to them anymore. She spends most of her time at home with her youngest, and she craves adult interaction. She hates to admit it, and she feels a little guilty about it, but if she’s being honest with herself, she feels unfulfilled.

Customer Avatar Persona

See? Honestly, I love Whitney. I just want to give her a big hug and tell her it is going to be okay. 😊

What's Next?

You can go as big and deep as you want with this exercise. Use A.I. to create an image of what your person might look like. Create a Pinterest or mood board with things that remind you of them. Anything to make it super duper clear who it is you are talking to.

And then, start creating products, services, and content for that one person. It’s going to help you to know what to say and how to say it.

In a later blog post, we will go over mapping out the customer journey using this information. But for now, that’s it!

FAQs

What if I have more than one target market or customer avatar?

That’s totally fine! Just repeat the process for each person. Try not to have too many different avatars, however, if you can help it. It makes marketing and product development trickier the more you have.

Doesn’t this limit my business?

Absolutely not. You are most likely still going to find customers with different personas, but by going through this process, it will really help you to focus your efforts on finding the perfect customer for you. When you try to appeal to everyone, you appeal to no one.

Perfect Customer Avatar
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