Considering the experience that your prospects and clients have with your business is a very good lens to use when you’re deciding where to invest in sales and marketing. We call this the Ideal Client Experience. This process is two-fold:
- Ideal Client Profile: Ensuring the Ideal Client is clearly defined
- Mapping out your Ideal Client Experience: Looking at the entire experience that an Ideal Client has with your business.
Ideal Client Profile
Most clients that we work with have a good idea who their ideal client is. Ideal clients are those that can take advantage of everything you have to offer.
As we work through the workshop process, clients often realize that their definition of an ideal client may be too broad. This makes it very difficult to create effective messaging and content that will connect with your ideal clients and also very challenging to get on their radar. Here are a couple of helpful resources about your ideal client profile:
When the ideal client is further refined, the value proposition can often be improved. We recently worked with a financial services company on a Revenue Growth Plan. When we worked through clarifying their Ideal Client Profile, they had the lightbulb moment that our clients often experience.
Initially, they wanted to hire a marketing person to get more leads. Going through our process helped them realize that the quickest way to achieve revenue growth (which is their overall goal) was to expand their share of wallet with their existing clients. Interestingly, this shift in thinking helped them decide to leverage existing educational resources for their clients to better serve them.
In the end, the value proposition to their clients is improved, enabling them to sell more to their current client base instead of hiring a marketing person right out of the gate to generate more leads. The next step is to make an investment in a marketing person to leverage this enhanced value proposition. The result? More QUALIFIED leads that are aligned with their Ideal Client Profile.
A tight value proposition targeted at a well-defined ideal client is a must before executing on a marketing strategy whether you are using an agency or doing your own marketing.
Mapping Out Your Ideal Client Experience
Taking the time to map out the experience that your ideal client has with your business is a very valuable exercise. That experience begins when your ideal prospect has a problem that you might be able to help with and ends when they are enjoying all of your products and services. Here are a couple of considerations to keep in mind when mapping out this experience:
- Ensure you think about it from the lens of your client and not from your internal sales or delivery process. Thinking about how clients feel in each stage, the friction that they might experience, is a great framework for improvement. This lens allows you to be more objective in considering a sales and marketing direction. It often brings operations into the equation as well as they obviously have a significant role in maximizing the client experience.
- Do not have any pre-dispositions as to where you can make the biggest impact. More on why below.
More often than not, businesses come to us thinking they need more top-funnel marketing leads to drive revenue growth. 2 thought-starter questions on this topic:
- How many of your clients actually fit your Ideal Client Profile (Read: They can take advantage of everything you offer)?
- What percentage of your ideal clients actually are enjoying all of the products and services that you offer? Follow up question: Why is your number so low?
Like the financial services company mentioned above, looking at the ideal client experience also helps prioritize where you can make the biggest impact the soonest. In addition, one significant advantage of looking at the ideal client experience to support your investment in sales and marketing is that it becomes a lot easier to measure than traditional marketing spend.