Last 2 posts I have been talking about the benefits of identifying who’s not your customer to ensure a better focus.
Once you know whom you don’t want to target consciously, you can actually build your messaging to ensure you make it clear for whom its not applicable and therefore your Ideal Customer recognises that the message is Only for her.
Whether its in the advertisements or in the email messaging that you build you can consciously list out all the people you don’t want to target. A positive way of doing this from the real estate market could be – “where millionaires reside” – which clearly tells people that if you are not a millionaire you can’t afford the homes.
There are clubs which mention the minimum criteria for joining the club. This way they ensure that they don’t waste time with wannabe’s.
In case of technology and B2B companies – you can decide to target companies who don’t use cloud and eliminate all companies who use cloud by doing messaging – “offer for first time cloud users only”.
By identifying “whos not your customer”, you don’t need to have negative connotations to it. Its just a method to ensure you can get your messaging for your specific niche very strongly aligned to the niche.
Try using this for building your messaging and let me know your results in the comments section below.
Till next time then.
Yesterday I spoke about why having a “Whos’s not your customer” can help put a check from you getting de-focussed from your Ideal Customer / segment / niche.
Who’s not your customer can be seen from different angles – lets explore that in a little more detail.
If you are in the technology space in B2B then it could be – all customers who still use physical IVRs cannot be my customers or all customers where the CIO reports into the CFO cannot be my customers or all customers who don’t use “cloud” cannot be my customer.
Inspite of being in the technology domain you could have non-technology disqualifiers as well – like the CIO reporting to the CFO or if the customer does not have a specialised program for diversity companies. Another disqualifier could be all companies who ask for a credit period of more than 30 days. Depending on the kind of business you are in you can choose the people you don’t want to work with.
Depending on the business you are in these , these disqualifiers help you fine tune your company’s ICP even more. So suppose you are a small company in IT services. As part of the the ICP you realise that you would like to work with multi billion dollar enterprises. However these companies might have payment terms which are 90 days credit. Now even if you were able to get this kind of a customer you may realise that you cannot sustain that kind of credit terms and your business suffers.
In this case it would be a better idea to identify multi billion dollar companies who have payment terms of less than 30 days only as your ideal customer. This way you don’t waste your energy.
As I mentioned yesterday – sometimes when looking at just the positive side of the ICP can defocus you. By identifying the people whom you cannot do business with, whether based on technical or non-technical criteria can dramatically improve your chances of success.
I would like to see your comments if this idea helps you as well.
Till next time then.
This statement is as or even more important than identifying who’s your ideal customer.
Reason being when we are trying to identify the single target market , where this ideal customer exists, we always get emotional. It happens all the time with me as well, I always think that maybe with just a small tweak, I would also have a larger ICP market.
That’s where the problem starts, we do the first tweak, then the second and soon we have a large target market to focus on. Your brain feels comfortable with this because it sees a larger number so a higher possibility of success. The brain works on the mechanism that even a small portion of a large pie is better. However the chance of not being able to any portion of the large pie is a very strong reality.
To avoid this situation seducing you to look at larger numbers, its always a good idea to identify who would be a bad customer for you. This helps eliminate the add-on numbers to your ICP.
Its always always a good idea to look at a very small section of the market, learn from it, dominate it before expanding into others.
Till next time then…..eliminate all the people who would not be good customers.
Trying to create a new market is very “sexy”. All the marketing books and case studies will talk about the heroics of creating a new market where nothing existed and how those companies took abnormal profits.
What doesn’t get spoken in these case studies is the number of companies who fell by the wayside in trying to create a new market.
I have had my share of misadventures in trying to create a new market where there was none.
I have found that its always better to check a market where there are existing players and then find a niche in that market. If there are other players already, it means there’s money for that product or service . It means people accept that kind of a product or service.
If people already accept a certain kind of product then its easier to upgrade them to a more powerful version or more expensive version or sometimes to a simpler version. The basic concept of your product or service is known, so you only have to convince on the nuances that you offer.
Here you can be first with the nuance that you are bringing to the table and occupy that position in the minds of the customer.
Till next time then.