You want more clients.
But you don’t want just any old clients. You want great clients. Clients who understand what you do, value your ability to do it and vitally have the money to pay you what you’re worth.
In short, you want more clients like your best clients.
The problem is really good clients can be hard to come by.
Instead, you meet a lot of prospects that don’t quite cut the mustard. Either they don’t have the budget, the time or in many cases the inclination to move forward.
It’s frustrating and worse a drain on your precious resources.
What you need is better prospects.
And with the right focus, you can get them.
Why the Majority of Biz Gen Fails
When your pipeline isn’t as full as you’d like, the thing you fear most is missing out on a potential opportunity.
So in an attempt to garner the largest number of leads, it’s not uncommon for business owners to construct marketing messages that they feel will appeal to as many people as possible.
Problem is when you try to talk to everybody, you risk engaging no one at all.
Why Successful Marketing Requires a Laser-Like Focus
Trying to market to lots of different people at the same time is like trying to cut a diamond with a hammer and chisel. You may scratch the surface but you’ll never make much of an impact.
Cutting a diamond requires a precision instrument that has the power to penetrate through to its core. Although essentially a projector of light, lasers work because their beam is so focused that it achieves the intensity and energy needed to infiltrate.
It’s the same with your marketing messages. The more focused they are, the more intense they will become and the greater the impression they will make.
That’s not to say that you can’t have more than one audience. What it does mean is that when constructing your sales and marketing messages, you want to concentrate on one audience at a time.
It’s Time to Get Specific
Did I tell you the one about John?
It’s Christmas Eve and he still hasn’t got a present for his wife. Coming home empty handed is not an option. So he charges down to his local shopping centre.
The car park is chocka block but after 15 minutes of driving around in circles he finally finds a space. He rushes into the mall to begin his quest. 2 hours later, exhausted and a little shell shocked he emerges victorious.
But where on earth did he park the car???
If John had a Ferrari his search would be pretty straight forward. After all it would stick out like a sore thumb.
Much to John’s disappointment it isn’t a Ferrari. So to stand any chance of finding his grey Ford Focus quickly, he’s going to need help from the car park staff and he’s going to have to get specific.
Giving the make, model and colour won’t cut it.
He’ll need to describe unique characteristics that will enable the search party to identify his car from the mass of metal in the parking lot.
The more obvious he can make his car, the more likely it will stand out.
Does Your Perfect Prospect Stand Out?
John’s search for his car is not dissimilar to your search for great prospects. Both demand specificity.
When you get specific, you enjoy two important benefits:
- First your network can quickly and easily identify the people they know that fit the bill
- Second you can create sales and marketing content that will help your perfect prospects to identify you as their perfect supplier
The reality is, if you’re not attracting the prospects you need to build your business, chances are you need to get better at describing who want to attract.
How to Profile Your Perfect Prospect
If you want more clients like your best clients, there’s only place to start your search.
Your client list.
Start by writing a list of your clients both past and present and then follow these three steps.
Step 1: Isolate Your Best Clients
What constitutes best will be different to different people. However, it’s likely your best clients will fall into one or more of the following categories and your very best clients will probably fit in more than one.
Create a table and put your clients into one or more of the following categories:
- The clients you enjoy working with the most
- The clients you get the best results for
- The clients who’s problems you love to solve
- The clients with the biggest budgets
- The clients who value what you do and pay you well to do it
Be as honest as you can. The aim of this exercise is to get specific and that means indentifying a select group of clients, not building the biggest list possible.
If an individual client fits into more than one section, you know you’re onto a good thing.
Step 2: Get to Know Your Prospect
Once you’ve identified your best clients, the next step is to get a feel for the actual people you want to attract.
One of the biggest mistakes people make when building a prospect list is to write a list of companies rather than focusing in on people.
Remember people buy people so it’s vital you get to know the people that will make your best clients.
The better you know them, the greater your ability to persuade and influence them.
When thinking about the clients you’ve highlighted in the last step, ask yourself the following questions:
- What is their role?
- What are the responsibilities of their role?
- What are their objectives?
- Why are these objectives important?
- What challenges stand in the way of their achieving their objectives?
- What causes these challenges to occur?
- What are they trying to do overcome these challenges?
- Why isn’t it working?
- What pressure does this put them under?
- Where is this pressure coming from?
- What will happen if they don’t overcome these challenges?
This is one of the most powerful and important exercises you will ever do.
Not only will it enable you to create a precise portrait of your most important prospects but it will also build the foundation for the messages and content that will become the cornerstone of your sales and marketing activity.
Really focus in on the problems your clients had when they first came to you. Don’t make the mistake of confusing their problems with the goals they wanted to achieve.
You are looking for the underlying issue that caused them to seek your services out.
Step 3: Profile the Companies Your Prospects Come From
Now that you know who your best clients are it’s time to build a picture of the companies they come from. Here are the factors you’ll want to bring out:
- Age of company
- Size of company in terms of number of employees
- Size of company in terms of their annual turnover and profits
- Industry sector
By the time you’ve finished these three steps, you’ll know who your best prospects are, what they’re experiencing and where they come from.
Bring Your Prospect to Life
You now want to bring all that information together into a coherent whole.
The best way to do that is to give your prospect a name and tell their story.
Find a picture of a person that represents your perfect prospect. Having a face to go with the name will help remind you of who you want to attract and keep you on target.
Now that you’ve got a good idea of who your perfect prospects are and what they look like, in the next part of our series we’ll show you how to use this information to find them.
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