Many business owners “think” they know the answer when asked “Who are your customers”, but I find that many times they really don’t know. If they do know they don’t completely “know” their customers.
We think about this generically but for marketing purposes and to be better prepared to service your customer base we need to dig a little deeper as to who our customer really is.
Lets look at a couple scenario’s to give us a better idea of what I’m talking about. If we were to ask Joe Plumber “Who are your customers” he may say well anyone that has plumbing problems. While in fact that “might” be true, Joe may want to think a little deeper or he’s selling himself short.
If we think a bit more about Joe’s customers we could say that not only those with problems need his service but what about people renovating their home and want to upgrade their master bath or even add a 2nd bathroom to the house. So now Joe’s customers are people with problems AND people renovating/remodeling see we’ve already doubled Joe’s business.
Drawing out that thought a bit more we could include new home construction,we could also add to it by thinking about commercial and small business plumbing needs for both new and old plumbing. We could even think about outdoor services for Pool plumbing or sprinkler systems and on and on.
You can see how we could easily think of more and more “people” that are Joe’s customers. But look at this in a slightly different way. We should think about “WHO” are Joe’s customers in the sense of what they do for a living; average age rage; income levels; likes dislikes; etc. etc.
Why is this important? Well if we know the answers to these questions we can get better results on our marketing. What advertisements to run and where to run them and what kind of ads to run. With that information we could even think about what kind of words they use and how they search for services. For example are they an older generation that prefers to look at the classifieds in the newspaper? Or a younger crowd that hops on their mobile device and uses social media to find plumbers in their area.
You could even then start thinking about promotion ideas, for example if you’re trying to reach first time home owners maybe leave a flyer for a free or discount pipe inspection at the pediatricians office where young parents will be sitting waiting for the doctor. Or ask to leave coupons for installation/inspections of sprinkler systems at the counter of local plant nurseries.
We need to think outside the box or just think a little bit more about the people that use our services so that we can better communicate with them. This is true for ANY business. Think about the type of people that visit your websites what types of things appeal to them color wise, image wise etc.
Something I like to do is run a survey or survey’s you can find out where people are “stuck” or maybe what they plan to do in the future. I like to do these as simple open ended questions. Something like “What’s the single biggest challenge you have with finding a plumber?” or “If you could ask your plumber one question about what to look for before buying a house what would it be?”
You would be surprised by the answers you get but by asking a single question you’re not scaring them away with to many questions, and if it is set up where they have to enter a response instead of just checking a box next to the answers you can see the wording they use not to mention a ton of valuable data.
In addition you’ve also now built a list of people that are looking for your services, not only that but they’re also helping you create FAQ’s for website and marketing. So now I ask YOU, who are your customers? Take a moment right now and right down who that might be using the example above.