Creating an Ideal-Customer Profile
A question every contractor asks occasionally is, "Who do I really want to work for?" The answer drives your marketing efforts, your work styles, your partnerships, and potentially the growth of your customer base.
My question for you is, have you ever taken the time to determine who your company’s ideal customer is? In other words, the people your company is tailor-made to serve in order to create the best client/contractor relationships?
Maybe you haven’t; it’s tricky to define the exact client you want to work for when growing a business. Usually we take on the first customers to raise their hands and any other job we can find, simply because we need the work.
Of course, this gives us work, projects, and clients—but for consistent business growth, it’s not really the best method. We will often end up with more “problem clients” or jobs, when we are not selective with our client choices. We want to do what is best for each client and also what is best for our contracting company.
The alternative to this issue is to decide who you really want to serve. In your business, who is your ideal customer?
Isn’t Everyone My Ideal Customer?
I was once active in the Business Network International organization, the world’s largest professional networking program. BNI’s whole purpose is to offer professional referrals, and to help you refer other members. The best way to give a good referral is to know exactly what type of customer it is that they are looking for. If a member in your referral network has done a good job of describing their ideal client, then you may know a specific person fitting that description you can then refer for a job.
One of our members was finding it very difficult to narrow down what his ideal client looked like. He said, “everyone is my ideal customer, because anyone can pay for my services.”
Think about it; when you take the time to narrow down who your ideal customer is, it clarifies things in your brain. If you know exactly who you want to talk to, you’ll be able to speak their language. If you know exactly what their needs are, you’ll be able to directly help them. If you know exactly where they’re located, you’ll able to present your marketing to directly attract them.
Serving your ideal customer makes you provide better services because you’ll be working with the kind of clients you really connect with.
Who Is My Ideal Customer?
So, let’s talk about how to determine who your ideal customer is.
Some of this comes with experience. The more work you do, the more you will naturally find out who you like working for. But, even if you are relatively new, you can still do this exercise to think through who you want to be serving.
I recommend that you take time to sit down and actually put names to these ideal customers. Something like, “Bill and Jane.” Or whatever best fits your ideal customer in your mind.
Define Each Category of Your Ideal Customer:
- What is their age?
- Household income?
- Where are they located?
- What neighborhood do they live in?
- Are they homeowners? For how long?
- Do they have children? How many?
- Do they want a remodel? A custom home?
Here’s an Example:
They’re Bill and Jane. They’re in their mid-forties, because that’s the age group you want to work with. They’re a two-income household, and they’ve owned their home for ten years. They’re looking to remodel. They live in the specific neighborhood where you want to work. They have some children. Be sure and think about the children’s ages, and what they’re interested in as well. All these things add up to create a profile of your ideal customer.
Customize Your Marketing to Target Your Ideal Customer.
Your social media posts, your captions, your website—each of these actions should speak directly to this client. They have needs; market your business as the perfect way to fulfill those needs.
When your ideal customer sees your company set up to meet their needs, they’ll know you’re the one to hire. Of course, the more jobs you get from this ideal-customer profile, the more testimonials and reviews you’ll get from people just like them. Eventually, if you continue to target your ideal customer, dozens more ideal customers will see you and hire you.
As a contractor, don’t just work for anyone. Decide who you want to work for and put your business in front of them. The best business ventures happen when the contractor and client can perfectly meet each other’s needs.
Thank you for joining me today. If you have any further questions or comments, please join the conversation in the comments below.
Related Read: Turn Demanding Customers From Irritants to Assets