Researching your customer profiles
Knowing where to start customer profiles/avatars can produce blank stares. I know I was clueless when I started, I studied lots of websites that explained what a profile was and the information that you needed to created one, but it still left me a little bit baffled. They had great profiles/avatars templates, but I couldn’t understand where did they get the information from. I thought to myself If I made it up, then I’m still only marketing to myself. I finally learnt how to do it properly, it takes real research and it isn’t a quick process when done correctly. The good news is that it isn’t difficult and nearly everything that you need is online.
Where to start
We all know our niche, and we are aware of our ideal customer from the last exercise. Most of us would consider ourselves to be our ideal customer which is why the first profile that you created was based on you. I always start with myself which I define in great detail. Well why not, I am my perfect customer, I’ve spent money in my niche, I’m passionate, and I know a lot about my niche.
Create two customer profiles
Earlier we did an exercise where we looked into your influencers. You can create a profile based on someone who is a real enthusiast of one of your influencers who has achieved success because of that Influencer. They are usually the one commenting a lot, bragging, excited, testimonials, etc.
Another great profile to create is an amalgamation of random followers of your influencer and build them into one person. Look at all the questions being asked, problems, likes, dislikes, actually spend time looking into their online profiles, their age, occupations, etc. and build up a profile.
I also do a profile of someone or a few people who I have connected with in my niche and build a profile around them. This book was inspired by three people I knew that were really interested in making money online but didn’t know where to start. They all happened to be of the same age group, same goals, they had similar interest, etc. so I created a profile combining the three of them.
You need real people to create an accurate customer profile otherwise all the information that you are gathering is not real. What’s great about this research is that people love to share online almost all of their career, private and personal business.
Tools & Resources
Before we go into more detail for each section of the profile It is important to understand where to find the information.
Facebook – join Facebook groups in your niche, become friends with the going to people’s pages and generally learning what you can about them, read what they have to say, identify their pain points, etc. You generally need to have the questions you want answering in mind when looking into them.
Facebook Insight Tool – you will need a free Facebook advertising account, and at least one fan page created. Set up your first Ad and enter your card details. Do not run any ads but you will now have access to Facebook Insights. You can actually find out how many people are interested in certain topics, interest, demographics, hobbies, etc. it’s a great tool but not the easiest if you have never used it.
Twitter – use a website like Twazzup or Buzzsumo, put in a word around your niche and look to see what people are saying in your niche, take a look at their profiles or their follower’s profiles to see what they are tweeting about. Read about them and look at their websites or other social media pages.
Magazine Media Kits/advertising Info – go to https://www.magazines.com and find magazines in your niche, then google them and look for their media cards or audience profiles, etc. They explain their customer profile in depth. They break down details about their audience numbers which will give you a good idea about your audience, customers ages, income, genders, marital status, employment status, education, etc.
You Gov – go to http://bit.ly/yougovlite and search a person, brand or interest in your niche. You can switch between UK, USA & German results. You will see the average demographics, entertainment, food, lifestyle, personality etc. Its great for filling out customer profiles.
Linkedin/forums – look in groups and forums to see what questions people are asking, what problems are they having, who is answering the questions, who are the influencers in the group. “Do NOT comment at this stage, you are just gathering information at this stage, later when we are doing traffic building techniques you want to be strategic with your comments and advice that generate traffic or revenue.”
Websites – review websites in your niche look at the number of followers they have on different social networks, which one provides the most popular information.
Q&A sites – like Yahoo questions, Reddit, Quora, etc. these are sites where people are continuously looking for solutions to problems.
Google – Google questions in your niche and look at who is providing answers, learn everything you can about that person.
Other Social Networks – Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram, etc. Search the social networks and look for goals, pain points, desires, age groups, etc. in your niche.
Taking all the information that you found and putting it into a one-page customer profile will become valuable throughout your whole process and puts you way ahead of your competitors. Knowing your audience makes your blogging life easier, clearer and more enjoyable.
Note the tiniest of detail when writing your profiles, like favourite sports, tv shows they are talking about, pets the majority have, type of car they drive, style of clothes, brands that keep being mentioned, etc. When you are writing blog posts you can really connect with your audience if you are mentioning things that they are familiar with and share similarities. You can always look back at your profiles for inspiration.
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