If you’re a service-based business owner seeking clients, you know your marketing starts with the question:
“Who’s my ideal target audience? What do they want?
“I’m targeting a new audience. I’ve been working with clients who need help managing their money. Now I’m working with money coaches.”
“I’m struggling to create new products that will make my ideal clients scream, ‘I’ve absolutely got to have this!'”
“Just starting to work with a new marketing consultant and the first thing they asked was, “Who’s your ideal client and what motivates the mto buy?”
Can’t answer these questions? You might as well not bother writing out your sales letter, landing page, or lead magnet. You won’t be reaching your ideal clients…and you may not reach anyone at all.
But finding your clients can feel like searching for a lump of coal on a cold, dark night. How do you learn what they want? How do you start talking to them?
Most business owners do one of two things.
(1) The demographic descriptor: “newly-divorced 40-something women who need to manage their money.”
A good start…but where will your emotional copywriting come from?
(2) The avatar: “Jenny, a newly divorced 45-year-old, college graduate English major. Loves shopping, personal trainer and fine wine. Now overwhelmed as she realizes her husband has gone and she has no idea how she’ll continue her life of luxury.”
An even better start…but how will you enter into a dialogue to respond to Jenny?
To get clients to say yes, examine their baggage.
Clients come to you with baggage. So your first step is to dig into their backstory and find the baggage they’ve been carrying on the journey.
Your client’s backstory has 3 parts.
(1) What’s their pain or problem?
(2) What obstacle keeps them from solving this problem on their own?
(3) What have they tried up to now?
Jenny – the financially overwhelmed divorcee – has the following components in her story:
(1) Problem: How can she manage her money to give her the lifestyle she wants?
(2) Obstacle: She has no idea how to invest. In fact, it’s been awhile since she balanced a checking account. And she doesn’t know what she needs to learn or where to start.
(3) What she’s tried: Her cousin told her to pick a few index funds. (She didn’t know what that meant.) Her colleague recommended a financial advisor whose fee seemed outrageous (and made snide comments about how she might not have enough wealth to qualify as his clients). Her friend at the gym recommended you.
Jenny’s baggage isn’t just her problem: it’s her history. Knowing she’s tried to work with a snobby financial planner tells you a lot about what’s really keeping her from saying yes.
Let’s face it… a client relationship is like any other relationship. People arrive with baggage, good or bad. Your relationship develops only when you pay attention to the baggage.
Once you find a backstory that’s shared by many people in your market, you find your story to match their story. And now you’re ready to hit the road. You’ve got the basis for a dialogue.
You’re much more productive because you target your best clients directly. You speak their language. You respond to the conversation in their heads — including the comments they’re not likely to share right away.
Working with a client backstory can also be fun! We’ve just scratched the surface here. You just need to know a few things:
— how successful marketers use their client’s backstory to write copy, create offers and even build a successful brand
— how to get inside their heads as you research the client’s backstory
— how to flesh out this template to gain greater marketing impact
Now you can take delivery of my popular course – Gain The Client Advantage By Finding Their Backstory. Just $47 – and you’ll get $10 off when you apply the coupon CLIENTADV10.
WHY I CREATED THIS PROGRAM
My name is Cathy Goodwin. I’ve been helping clients grow their businesses for over a decade, as a copywriter, branding consultant and strategist.
Like many of my clients, I struggled to identify an avatar or ideal client. I answered the questions. Who are they? Where do they live? What’s going on in their business?
I created avatars that seemed really solid. But somehow my copy didn’t reach my clients.
But when I wrote copy for other business owners, my copy nailed the message and hit a bunch of home runs. What was the difference?
When I worked with clients, we reviewed their target audience’s back story. We asked impertinent questions (well, not directly, but we did!). We delved into their history – not just their current need. And we brushed away all the extras that made for a good story but didn’t move prospective buyers along the path.
Since I’ve been working with stories, I’ve become more attuned to the way people describe their experiences…to themselves as well as to others.
I’ve learned the importance of choosing the right story for you and your marketing.
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