Why everyone is not your customer — revisited

Nearly five years ago (time does indeed fly), I wrote a blog titled “Everyone is not your customer”. Since then I find myself making that same point at least once a month. So it appears some things do bear repeating. 

Everyone is not your customer.

I run an SME too, so I know when you pour your heart and soul into what you’re doing it’s hard to conceive that people might not give a damn. Get over it. Because for every organisation, there is a chunk of humanity who don’t, who won’t ever, give a damn, no matter what you do.

Finding the someones who are your customers can take any number of paths but usually starts with them caring on some level about the same thing you do. Don’t try to please everyone.

Look at any robust and resilient brand out there. These organisations all share a crystal clear knowledge of what they care about and who their customer is. A good first step is figuring out the something to stand for that you care about. Is it low prices, luxury, cool design, the environment, organic products, being Australian made?

This is where the brand formula comes in handy. Your organisational identity of purpose and values, multiplied by the promises you make, divided by the experience you deliver, results in your brand. Working through these elements will help to nail what that something is and just as importantly who out there will desire it.

To learn more about how to share what you care about click here.

Do you know who your customer is? Yes, wonderful, you can get back to the 1001 things on your to-do list. No. Stop everything and figure it out. I mean it. Right now. Because for every day you don’t know, you are wasting resources trying to get the attention of the wrong people.

Do they live in the city or the country? What do they like to do? How old are they? Are they married, single, have kids? Are they male or female or both? Are they little kids or teenagers? Are they party animals or homebodies? Do they live in a house or an apartment or a commune? Do they have a car or ride a bike?

Keep asking questions until you have a picture. You’ll also need to adjust as you learn more about them. But you’ve got to look, collect information, get to know them using surveys. Track what, when and how often they interact with you. Talk to your team who are on the frontlines — they will have tidbits galore to tell you.

And once you know who the collective ‘they’ are, you can break them up into groups, because even if you don’t have the inclination to go the whole “segment of one” route, a little segmentation goes a long way. Now you can tweak the experience to hit their particular sweet spot — from how you sell, to what you sell and how you talk about it. Loyalty goes up. Hassles go down.

Repeat after me: everyone is not my customer. Now, get started.

See you next week.

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