Have you ever asked yourself this question; who are my customers? And if you have, how deep did you go to find out who they are or what they want and like? Exploring your target audience is an essential marketing path to follow rather than focusing on everyone and ending up with little to no sales. So how do you identify and understand your target audience? The best answer or most effective solution is creating an ideal customer avatar.
A customer avatar is also referred to as a marketing persona, buyer persona, or a customer profile.
And it is a perfect representation of your target audience.
This is a customer you expect to be interested in your products or services and make a purchasing decision.
A customer avatar is fictional
However, the presentation allows you to understand your ideal clients’ needs, wants, and challenges.
The good thing from all this is that you will know better how to fulfill everything they need and want while finding solutions to their challenges through your products, services, or customer satisfaction.
Remember that a customer avatar is not a group of clients but an individual who represents the rest.
Every business should have a buyer persona, whether big, small, established, or new — it is the key to successful marketing and improved sales.
Most start-ups have a tight budget, and they can benefit more from a customer avatar since they are focusing on specific people as ideal customers.
Who do you expect to see walking towards your business today?
It is time you discover your customer avatar and enhance your marketing strategies.
If you are still wondering why you need to do this or how you will do it, we got you on this one.
Be ready to outline all essential details about your ideal customer on the customer avatar using this ultimate guideline.
Building a customer avatar
Now that you already know what a customer avatar is, I have some good news for you; it is very easy to develop one as long as you ask the right questions — research is key.
Some people may argue that you can simply use statistics rather than building the avatar.
The huge difference between stats and avatar is that statistics will provide you with information for a huge audience.
In contrast, an avatar focuses on a single individual and hence better decision making.
Can you build multiple avatars?
This is a question that many entrepreneurs are struggling with, but the fact is that you can have more than one avatars, which is perfectly fine.
However, you must be very careful with multiple avatars.
If you have more than 20 or 50 customer avatars, it will be challenging and complicated to create a marketing campaign that satisfies every avatar.
You will lose focus and probably spend a lot of money trying to fulfill all these people’s needs.
Ask yourself this question; have I saturated any of these markets or audiences represented by the multiple avatars?
If you feel that you are doing good, then it is okay — otherwise, it is time you go more in-depth with your research to ensure that you have a maximum of 2 or 3 ideal customer avatars.
Wasted efforts and time trying to impress and attract a wide net of customers is not worth it.
You can only get a greater success rate with marketing if you have a well-defined target audience.
I am sure you can agree with me on creating a customer avatar, and the only downside is that it requires a fair amount of time to complete.
However, you can divide the whole process into small steps for it to be less overwhelming.
You can also get a customer avatar template from the internet to make it easy for you during preparation.
Now, if you are ready, here are the steps you should follow to make sure you get it right and achieve a successful sales and marketing experience.
Avatar target audience
Who forms part of your target audience?
Where are they found?
This is the part where you start doing research.
Your ideal audience could be your current customers.
If you have their contact information such as email addresses or telephone numbers, send them a survey asking relevant questions about your company and industry at large.
They will provide you with their honest insights on the questions raised.
If your business is a startup or does not have a perfect customer yet to ask the questions, this is where you opt for a different type of survey.
You can search for the right answers through Q&A sites, third-party reports, social media conversations, competitors’ sites, sales and marketing teams, and customer service teams.
Also, you have to be very careful and avoid being biased in every decision because it is not about you but the customers and what they need.
You can also rely on:
- Online survey tools such as SurveyMonkey, Polldaddy, or Ask Your Target Market to get insights using similar questions
- Social media analytics, email analytics, and Google analytics whereby you gather information about your website visitors, fans, and followers
- Google search console to help you understand the challenges your potential customers are facing, leading them to your website or posts
- Industry Blogs and forums to understand what other players are saying or the current issues affecting the industry
- Influencers in the industry. They could be your perfect customer avatars or a good representative of the same. Their followers could be your target audience, as well.
Gathering the right information from the right people is key to creating an ideal customer avatar, and you should put more effort into this step before you can proceed to the next one.
Ideal client avatar
You must have done your homework well, and you feel that you are satisfied with the information you got from your research.
It is now a perfect time to create your customer avatar — it means putting the details you have gathered in the previous step into an avatar worksheet.
Choose a customer avatar template that best suits your interest and business goals.
We must have stated earlier that this avatar is a fictional character but since he is an essential part of your business and marketing operations, give him a name.
If you want to go all the way to make it feel actual or human, add a photo as well — I would add a shot myself.
That was fun but now start writing your avatar’s story or avatars’ if you have more than one.
Start by preparing a collate of theme information and list the persona’s details under each theme on the avatar worksheet.
Usually, an ideal buyer persona has four or five themes arranged properly in a precise and powerful format.
Here are the main sections that your persona worksheet should contain.
This is usually the first section on the avatar worksheet detailing personal information about your ideal customer.
In this case, here are some of the details that you should add to this section:
This may seem like lame data when it comes to marketing goals, but it serves as a better description of your ideal customer rather than just knowing he exists on the list.
Also, sometimes you may want to narrow down your target options for specific marketing campaigns — this part will come in handy.
Every customer avatar template must contain this information.
- The age
- The gender
- Marital status
- Number of children and their ages
- Residence or where they live
- Level of education
- Occupation and job position
- Monthly and yearly incomes
2. Source of information:
This section tells you where your ideal customers get their daily information.
Once you list this info, you will know where to advertise more and the language to use to keep them interested — it is a fantastic marketing trick.
Therefore, fill these details into the avatar worksheet.
- Favorite books
- Conferences attended
- Websites visited more
- Favorite magazines
- Favorite social media platforms
- Gurus admired in the industry
Goals and values
This is the second section and can also be referred to as the avatar’s wants since it outlines the things that your ideal clients want to achieve or see happening in his life or business.
His wants are his goals, and if you can help him achieve them, then your marketing efforts can be quite seamless and fruitful.
This wouldn’t be the case when you do not understand the needs of your customers.
However, fulfilling their wants must match with their values — no need to use black tricks because your marketing success will not last long enough.
In this case, include these details to create your customer avatar:
- Personal wants or goals
- The family wants or goals
- Business goals (for entrepreneurs)
- Esteemed values
This section on the avatar worksheet outlines the ideal customer’s challenges, problems, fears, and pain points.
How does this information reinforce your marketing efforts?
It is simple; you get an idea and reason to create a new line of product or service to solve the problems faced by the avatar.
Secondly, it can help you create ads that directly speak to the avatar’s challenge, striking a promise or a deal to rely on your product — hence, solve their problems.
Always focus on information that relates to the services or products you are offering.
- Pain points experienced
Motives and purchasing decision
This is a critical section on the avatar worksheet, and the sad part is that most people ignore it.
It outlines the reasons why your avatar might choose to buy from you and the deal-breakers.
For instance, if you know that an avatar values timely delivery more than anything else, your marketing campaigns will include an assurance of quick and accurate delivery.
Also, if you know that your customer service has always been a deal-breaker, you will do better to enhance client handling and satisfaction.
Another important aspect is the role the avatar plays in making a purchasing decision — can he make a final decision, or it requires approval from someone else?
- Motivations to purchase
- Deal breakers or Objections to purchase
- The role played in purchasing decision
Takeaways on creating a customer avatar
- Pay attention to negative personas; they will play a huge role in dealing with your business shortcomings.
- Try repeating the process, and the good thing is that the second time will be very close to perfection, and if you can get one more avatar, the better.
- Ensure that you are not biased in analyzing the information gathered, even if some of the details might be hurting.
- Finally, reflect and focus more on finding solutions for your ideal customers. It will enhance your marketing efforts and hence the overall performance of your business.
Why do you need a customer avatar?
In a nutshell, you need to create a customer avatar to help you know the person you are trying to sell your products or services to.
He is an ideal client who is willing to spend money buying from you, come back for more.
And refer other people to come to buy from you.
The only challenge here was getting to know this person, but it is no longer a problem if you can follow this guideline.
1. You don’t need to target everyone anymore
How hard has it been trying to work with everyone in the market?
While I do not want to be a bearer of bad news, it never works with everyone.
You will keep on wasting a lot of time and money with your general marketing campaigns.
If you can build an ideal marketing persona, you are focusing on a small segment of the market that you can fully satisfy because you know everything about them.
Your business cannot satisfy everyone, and it is high time you accept and stop trying to!
Focus that effort on a smaller group, and once you saturate that market, you can keep on creating more avatars that relate to your business better.
2. Improved marketing operations
Most businesses are always looking for ways to improve and change their marketing campaigns and messages.
While this is good for marketing, why are they not getting results?
The answer is because they are focusing on the wrong aspect first.
Once you complete the customer avatar worksheet, it becomes effortless to develop these ad messages and marketing campaigns.
You already know where your ideal clients get information, what they want, and the challenges they are facing.
How hard can it be to deliver your adverts or any other message to them with these details?
It is a matter of relevance, and you now know what to say and how to make them take the right action.
3. Save money and time
Most entrepreneurs cannot conduct marketing campaigns now and then.
The worst part is when you do and never get the intended results.
Unfortunately, this happens a lot with most businesses.
Efficiency is crucial when it comes to marketing and if you want to stop throwing money and wasting time on things that do not work.
Stop ignoring that customer avatar template you have been holding for ages.
The right customer avatar template will ensure that you are focusing all your efforts on the right areas.
For instance, if your avatar does not use social media platforms, why are you wasting time and money advertising on social media?
Well, you wouldn’t know this without a customer avatar.
You can never go wrong when focused on the right target market.
4. It is straightforward to build a customer avatar
You may have never thought of finding who your ideal customers are because you are afraid to start.
Here is the good news, even if it will take time to complete, it is easy.
Also, there are numerous customer avatar templates on the internet, and they can help you get started.
Your marketing and sales success are right on the other side of your fear of creating a customer avatar.
Your first attempt to find your ideal clients for your business will help you gather and find similar information in the future, even without looking for it.
The bottom line
An ideal customer avatar is everything for all businesses.
The main question is, how do you expect to persuade someone to buy from you, if you do not know them at all .
You can’t even tell if it is right for them or not.
It is high time you start targeting right with your customers, marketing campaigns, and ad messages.
If the target is correct, then it will hit directly to the right spot.
Apart from marketing, a customer avatar will also improve other business aspects, such as product development and customer experience or satisfaction.
Now, with this guide, you already know how to build that perfect customer avatar and the reasons why every business needs it.
My only final question is, what are you waiting for to create your customer avatar?