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The UFMB Guide to Finding Your Ideal Client
Episode 422nd June 2021 • Unf*ck My Business • Unfuck My Business
00:00:00 00:47:36

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"Who are the people you are put on this earth to serve?"

The UFMB crew takes on the challenge of putting a finger on what...and who an ideal client is. Tap in to find out what critical questions you should be asking of yourself and your business in order to zoom in on the people that you can really knock it out of the park for.


In this episode: Robyn Sayles, Chris "Jinx" Jenkins, Kathleen Seide, Shea Jeffers

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Below is a rough transcript for your convenience. It’s not perfect because we want to spend our time unfucking your business, not unfucking this transcript.

Transcripts

Kathleen Seide:

Hey, this is Kathleen. And when I'm not unfucking businesses here on the podcast, I'm unfucking real estate over at whystpete.com. My company is Sidey Realty and we are excited to sponsor this episode.

Intro:

Hey, witches and wizards. This is Erin Foggoa from wild, which creative and you're listening to Unfuck My Business No bullshit advice for business owners who want to be resilient as fuck. Grab your ones and get ready. This content is pure magic.

Robyn Sayles:

Welcome back everybody. To another episode of Unfuck My Business. I am one of your hosts, Robin Sayles. And today I am joined by Kathleen Seidey. Say Hello.

Kathleen Seide:

Hello, hello.

Robyn Sayles:

And the incomparable Jinks,

Chris 'Jinx' Jenkins:

I suppose that's true.

Robyn Sayles:

And last but not least Shea.

Shea Jeffers:

Good Greetings.

Robyn Sayles:

Hello everybody. So today we're talking about something that. Our community has specifically asked us to dive a little deeper into, and that is the concept and process of defining your ideal client.

And I think the word defining is important. You should have an ideal client. Something that is not necessarily taught in a MBA school is how to define who that ideal client is. There's a bit of learning along the way. There's a bit of figuring it out as you go along. And I think this is different. I want to state right up front that this is different necessarily than like a common concept of target demographic.

You can have a target demographic for a specific advertising model, but I think we're getting down to the heart of like, Who are the people that you are literally put on this earth to serve. So when we talk about ideal client, we're talking about that. We're talking about the people who are on Google right now, searching for exactly who you are and what you have to offer.

And you are literally the best person. Your business is literally the best to be able to serve these particular individuals. It's not the broader client base, some very narrow and specific subset of your clients who are going to get the most from working with you specifically. And that takes a little effort to figure that out.

So we're going to talk about that effort today. I do want to say that you have to do this before you start spending money. So, let me clue you in on something that happens quite frequently. I work with a lot of visual marketers, web designers, things of that nature, and they hate nothing more than when you come to them and say," I need a logo." " I need a website." ... but you have no idea who that logo is designed to attract, who that website is designed to bring in, and what the journey should be like for the people. Once they get to that website, you are driving your marketing department and your designers crazy by not knowing who you're talking to.

And so before you spend any money, we need to figure out who you're talking to and why, who that ideal client is. A lot of times, I know Shea and, Kathleen, we've each talked about this. People come to us with specific questions. "Do I need this social media?" " Where should I do that?" "What kind of color should that be?"

And we know that if you've done the work on who your ideal client is, you don't have to ask those questions. Am I right? So what are some of the ones, Shea specifically, what are some of the ones that when people ask you those questions, you know, they don't know who they're talking to.

Shea Jeffers:

There's a, there's a list that we can like, just keep on rolling, like a scrolling list. Like a star wars starting screen. It's always starts with the social media. It's... you know, "Where should I be?" "What time should I post?" That's a great one. "What time should I post." ...I don't know. When are your people awake?

1. Are your people American?

2. What part of the country are they in?

You know, like all these little things, it's like those simple questions you would know, because if you did it and never got a basis and you paid attention to when they reacted or how they reacted, you'll have a good idea.

Robyn Sayles:

Absolutely. Kathleen Warner, some of the questions you hear that are key indicators that people don't know who their ideal clients are?

Kathleen Seide:

Oh, questions like. So I talked to a lot of real estate agents. They'll be asking what publications they should be posting ads in, where they should be engaging, how, how they can connect to people. Should I be on Facebook? Should I be on, you know, like you said, all the social media. Also a lot of questions around, what kind of ads to pay for on Facebook and Instagram and all of that Google ads, that sort of stuff. How much should my budget be? Like? Well, I don't know how many people are you trying to speak to. Right. Like how, how big is your audience and where are they? And honestly, the more specific you can get about it, the less it costs. So that's a huge bonus. And maybe you don't need to pay for those ads. Maybe you can do content marketing that speaks to them directly. That will come up in their Google feed automatically because they're searching for those questions and you can be right there.

Robyn Sayles:

Bingo. Cool. I want to come back around to that whole answering questions that people are searching for. So we're going to come back around to that in a second, before we do jinx from a web development software development perspective, are there questions that people ask you that are red flags, you know, that they don't know who their ideal audience woof,

Chris 'Jinx' Jenkins:

you know, one of the biggest things that I struggle with sometimes in working with web development clients is that they try to build the website that they want and not the website that their audience needs.

And so I literally have to sort of argue with them and try to talk them out of this really, really bad approach. You know, the whole was that, you know, comedy show and they're like, "Put a bird on it." These people, they have this idea that they just need to put a bird on it. And whatever that means, you know, for their particular. Business and they're not focused on the fact that this is not a tool for them. It's not a vanity picture that you're going to put on the wall. It's something that has to reach the people that you're actually trying to reach. So, you know, when people come in and start asking about like really specific features, instead of talking about their high-level strategy and their conversion goals and all the rest of that, that's a good sign. They don't know what they actually need.

Robyn Sayles:

I love it. I love the Portlandia reference and I think that speaks to something that's really. Critical. And that we've all seen countless examples of which is there are tons of people out there who are going to tell you, you need to do this and you need to have that.

You need to have this kind of content. You need to have this kind of website and here's the latest trend. And here's a funnel that you can use. All you have to do is swap out your company names, you know, in the thing. And. Everyone needs Facebook ads. And here's how you can make the most out of Facebook ads.

What if your audience literally isn't on Facebook? That's not going to do any good. And so there are tons of companies and individuals out there who will tell you, you need this and you should do that. And none of it means a hill of beans. If you don't know how to apply it to your ideal clients, and then.

Yeah. I mean, this is the heart. So many of these questions that I'm hearing from you guys come back to this one central concept of People think it's in addition to... it's an add on... or it's the thing that's going to solve all the problems. Like, "oh, if I just get my website to do this, then the customers will find me." Well, not if it doesn't speak to the customers who need to find you...

This isn't an add on it should be the heart of your brand. It should be the heart of your business is understanding exactly who you're talking to a recurring theme in all of your answers is that people see this as a tool. They see identifying ideal client and target market as an aftereffect. If I just have the right Facebook ad, or if I just have the right fancy thing or the right type of website, then my clients will find me.

It's not fucking field of dreams, y'all. That's not how this works. "If you build it, they will come" Does. Not. Work.

Because they won't come. If they don't know you exist, if you're not super clear about who the they is, that should be coming to your field of dreams. Right? This is not an add on this should be the heart of your business.

This should be fundamental to how you build your business plan, how you test viability for your product or service. Is really, truly understanding who you're serving and why and what your value is in that overall experience and or transaction. So let's get into talking about the, how so I think we've made it pretty clear that you gotta identify who you're talking to.

You have to figure out who your ideal client is, but let's talk a bit about the, how. And I'd like for you all to share your personal experiences. So tell me how you determined who your ideal client was. How did you figure out which Elaine was appropriate for your business? So I'm going to start with Kathleen.

Kathleen, talk me through your ideal client identification in process.

Kathleen Seide:

Well, we were operating our real estate brokerage for years before the concept of buyer persona crossed my plate. And when it did, it was like this mind blowing, like, "Holy shit! This is what's been missing. I've been doing all this stuff and basically throwing spaghetti on the wall and seeing what sticks."

And a lot of the stuff I was doing was getting results, but it was getting results that were very frustrating to me. Some of the people that, that our content really resonated with were very difficult to work with. So it was really rewarding for them, but not also for me. So when the concept of buyer persona came into that, we sat down and defined a few ideal customers.

Like, and the way that works is you actually, you know, let's put a name to this person and like go through what their day looks like. When you wake up, do you have coffee or tea? Do you sleep in, do you work from home? Do you not?

Who is this person? And why do they care about what we have to give? And after going through that, we got really, really clear about how to connect with them.

So we defined four buyer personas. And doing that everything else became easy because at the core of how your business operates and what you're doing, all of those questions are answered really quickly. How do we want to speak?

What kind of language do we want to use? Do we want to be casual? Do we want to be formal? Do we... all of that gets really clear when you know who you're doing business with and why they love you. So I sat down and looked at all of our customers at that point. You know, I'm a, I'm a data nerd and I had everybody in spreadsheets and tables and all that stuff. And I went through and looked at the best interactions that we had. I took those and then categorize them a little bit further to see who they were. And what did we love about them? What did they love about us? And I actually sat down with some of those individuals and, and did, basically a survey, you know, just most of them had become friends because I loved them that much. And so I was able to sit down with them and talk things through and get a really clear understanding about it. And that completely changed the way we did everything in the business and in our marketing.

Robyn Sayles:

I love it. Data tells a story. So look at your data. It can tell you who your ideal client is.

If you already have clients to go through and look at. And it doesn't have to be, let's just clarify too. You don't have to have spreadsheets like Kathleen, it doesn't have to be formal data. You have data, even if it's physical pieces of paper in folders. In order to make it data, you just have to consolidate it into a group of information that you can look at.

That sounds like a whole other episode, but yes. Data tells a story and it can tell us a lot about who we like to work with and who likes to work with us and, and how to create more of those opportunities. Shay, I want to come to you next. How did you define your ideal client?

Shea Jeffers:

There's a mixture of two things, you know, I'm always starting with a U so fine.

It's all going to well to know who that client group is. That group of brand ambassadors and brand heroes that are really supportive of your organization, but you may not click specifically with each and every single one of them, as well as you can. Sometimes you need to look back a little bit and look over your own personal history of your business and how you have been operating your business and see where exactly you have been the most successful.

There's data there. And there's, there's a story there that you have been overlooking and not seeing and not paying attention to because you've just been doing it naturally.

So part of this finding your ideal client is also finding who you vibe with naturally, and then taking what you did with Kathleen's step and then zooming in even more to narrow it down.

Robyn Sayles:

So, what was that process like for you? Because I know your business has taken a little bit of a pivot last couple of years.

Shea Jeffers:

Well, I, I ha I had to take a few months and really think about what I've been doing for the past few years, what I've been doing for the past decade. Like what has really been a consistent piece of that?

A consistent piece of that was stepping into a business and organization and orienting myself in their waters. And it is sitting back and really taking the time to assess your strengths.

Robyn Sayles:

Jinx I'm coming at you next. How were you able to determine what the lane is and who you're serving at your organization?

Chris 'Jinx' Jenkins:

Well, there's, there's three questions that we like to ask and that we did ask when sort of identifying our ideal customers and those three questions are

"Who do I like working with?"

"Who can I benefit the most with the offering that I have?"

And "Who's the most profitable?"

... and all three of those questions work together.

They're really, really fucking important because

A. If you're going to be working on big projects with people that take a lot of time, then you should like the people that you're working with now, you may not agree with them a hundred percent on everything, you know, whatever the case may be, but you should at least enjoy working with them. Having a client that you hate is just a bad fucking time.

B. Who can you benefit the most? I don't ever want to work on a project where the client is like not absolutely thrilled at what the end result is. Right. I want every project to be a critical success. And so I I'm very picky about the projects that I take, because I want to make sure that it's something that I can just absolutely knock it out of the park for them and, and help them.

And then of course the profitability question, I mean, we're in business, right. You know, you've got to be profitable and I've found that there are a lot of businesses and hell I've even been through it in some. Stuff in my own past where you have clients that you're just not really turning much of a margin on you do a lot of work for them.

You spend a lot of time for them, and you're just not making that much money. It's gotta be the combination of all three of those of those things.

Robyn Sayles:

I love that. And thank you for walking us through that. There's two things I want to follow up on there. Number one, the whole concept of not just serving, but like blowing their minds and blowing the thing out of the water.

And so I, I want to reinforce that y'all because when we say ideal client, that's what we're talking about. There's people out there that you can help. And then there's people out there who you will change their world. You will change their business. You will change their life. They will spend the rest of their days talking about, thank God I worked with them.

Otherwise, I wouldn't be where I am right now. And so when we talk about ideal client, we're talking about finding those people, right? The people who aren't just going to be helped by you, but are going to be impacted by you are going to be changed by you and your business. And then we don't always talk about profitability when we talk about ideal client process.

And so I love that jinx brought that into it. I can have the most fun in the world working with these people, but if they don't fucking pay me, guess what? I'm not going to have a business for very much longer. We need people to pay us and we need people to pay us what we're worth. And so profitability is so important. And I want you, as you're going through, as you're listening to this and you're going through and thinking about who your ideal clients are, when you go through the process that Kathleen suggested of like looking at those previous clients and sort of narrowing it down. Who did I enjoy working with, et cetera, et cetera, you also want to look at the ROI of that client.

I had a great experience with an investor who was talking. He was giving a little talk about, you know, if you're thinking about investing or if you're thinking about getting investors, here's some important things to know. And he said something that fundamentally has changed the way I think about the ROI of my clients and my time. So he talked about the concept of you want investors who have plenty of money to invest, who you're not the only thing, they're not relying on you for a return on the investment. So he's like, if I am asking you for a hundred thousand dollars and you're going to give me a hundred thousand dollars out of the million dollars that you have available to invest.

You're going to trust that I know what I'm doing. You're going to give me that a hundred thousand dollars. You're going to let me go and do my thing. I'll give you check-ins, you'll expect a return on that money, but otherwise you're going to stay out of my face and you're just going to let me do what I do, right.

If I ask you for a hundred thousand dollars and it's the only hundred thousand dollars you have to invest, you're going to be the biggest fucking pain in my ass. You're going to call me every week. You're going to email me every other day. You're going to constantly want to know how things are going, where things are at all.

You're going to constantly be worried about that money and about that investment and the ROI just isn't there. I'm going to spend a tremendous amount of time holding your hand through this process. For the same amount of money that I could get from somebody else and spend very little time holding their hand through the process. And so I all think we have, have had some of those clients, or maybe you still have a couple of those clients who are just huge time sucks and huge pain in the asses. I know a lot of entrepreneurs who have their fee and then they have their "PITA" tax that they put on top of their fee and PITA stands for pain in the ass, right?

There are certain clients that always get a PITA tax because they're a pain in our ass and they take up a lot of our time. And if we don't put that PITA tax on there, we are going to like, the scale is tipped in their favor. They're getting way more from us than we're getting back from them.

And so when you are looking at your clients that you currently have, and trying to figure out who can I best serve and who best serves me, look at that ROI. You might have someone who's a pain in the ass, but they're worth it. The ROI is there. Right. And you might want a couple more of those. So I'll tell you a little bit about my ideal clients.

I do have some pains in the asses and they know their pains in the asses. I am good with that. I like challenging individuals and I tend to attract challenging individuals. I attract a lot of people who are what I call misunderstood geniuses. These are people who tend to be polymaths or people who come at whatever it is that they're gifted in from a perspective that people don't understand.

And so when I figured that out, that changed how I market myself completely. I'm not looking for people like me. I am not my ideal client. My ideal client is the person who has been struggling for years to really express what it is that they do or how it is that they do it because people keep trying to put them in boxes that they don't fit in.

People keep trying to force them to make decisions to be this or that when truly their value lies in the fact that there's this and that. And they come to me because they've already been through other people who say they can help them figure out how to talk about what they do and their process involves having them make a choice or putting them into a box.

It's the same fucking thing that they've been suffering with their whole life. I can't expect you to follow a formula and figure out the unique value proposition for this incredibly unique and complicated individual. So figuring out the value proposition for people like that is fucking hard.

It's really fucking hard. It takes a lot of work. It takes a lot of coaching. It takes a lot of customization and I love it. I am hard wired for this shit, but I also went through that same process of people saying like, oh, well, Robin, you just need to figure out what people's pain points are and how you solve it.

When you're dealing with people who are as complicated as the people that I'm dealing with, that is not an easy thing to figure out, my friend, it took me awhile. It took me a few years, but the difference is now my referral network is vast. I speak a lot of what I teach, which is understanding how to define those complicated individuals and where they are in their business, and where is the best point that I can help them. And I tell everybody, so everybody knows how to send people in my direction because I did the time. And I did the work to figure out how to talk about these people who are difficult to figure out how to talk about as ironic as that is. So there's work there. I think that's a great way to sum up all of our individual journeys is there's no fill in the blank. There's no Venn diagram. There's no magic formula for you to look at and go, oh, there's your ideal client. You, you have to really look. You have to examine who you've worked best with.

You have to examine. Who's even going to need the thing that you're offering and then once you find them, the other things become easier. Where are they? What time are they online? What social media platforms are they at? Where are they hanging out physically? Where can I advertise? All of those things become abundantly obvious once you've really dug in deep and peel back the layers, as Shea said, to figure out who exactly it is that you're talking about. Kathleen.

Kathleen Seide:

One common mistake that I keep coming across. Uh, I see it in myself as I start different ventures and I've had a few different people come to me with questions that basically boiled down to this and it's, they make the mistake of building their business around what they want and the problems that they have that they want to solve.

And it's a huge to, to steal Shea's word. it's a huge black hole, because I know my pain points in hiking.I know what, what I get out of it. I know what I like to share about it, but to create a business around that, I don't know how large that audience is and I need to spend some time out in the community of women hikers to really understand what they're talking about, what they're concerned about, what they're scared about, what they're motivated by as a group and then boil that down to an ideal customer before I build anything to speak to those people. Because if I'm just speaking to myself, I have an audience of one and that doesn't get me anywhere in business.

Robyn Sayles:

I'm so glad you made that point. And I think this is particularly acute for people who are content creators.

So if part of your business is content creation, one of the mistakes that I see over and over again is. The reason why you want to create the content is probably not in alignment with why people want to show up, to consume the content. And so you could really miss your ideal audience if you're pitching to why you are doing the content instead of why people would want to listen to the content.

And so asking those questions and going and doing that market research becomes key. I did some research a couple of years ago on podcasting in particular. But I continue to find that this research into audience behavior is applicable in so many other arenas and it's this people will search for a topic, but they will stay for a host.

Okay. So let me say that again, people will search for a topic, but they will stay for the host.

So, whatever your business is, whatever service or product you're delivering, people are going to search for that service or that product, but they're going to stay because of you. They're going to stay because of the experience of working with you.

They're going to stay because of your personality. They're going to stay because you've emotionally engaged them in some way, shape or form. And so if you don't know what it is that you have to offer and why it would be of a value to your ideal audience, there's no emotional engagement there. And therefore you're not going to find your raving fans.

I know Kathleen, that's something you talk about all the time, turning clients into raving fans, and nobody does it better than Kathleen. Let me tell ya. When she says she becomes their friends. She really truly does. So emotional engagement is key to turning those clients into raving fans.

Jinx. I'm sure when you look at like the average time that people spend on websites or in software, like it's, it's so low and less, we've crafted an experience that makes people want to stay.

And emotional engagement is part of that. If everyone's leaving your website after three seconds, There's no emotional engagement there on that main page to get them to stay, right?

Chris 'Jinx' Jenkins:

Yeah. I mean, it's, you know, one of the things that we look at in, in UX is like user friction. You know, this idea that you've created some obstacle for them that, that causes them to fail in the desired conversion.

And that's really, you know, just sort of a visual representation of the conversation that you're having with them. Part of why it's so important to know who your ideal client is, and to be like structuring all of your communication around that is so that you know how to have that good conversation because, you know, otherwise you're just sort of like throwing words out there and hoping that something resonates. If I'm talking to strangers, It's it's a whole lot of, "how's the weather today" But if I'm talking to my best friend, "I heard you're going through this thing, let's talk about it. Let me support you," or whatever, there's this deeper, meaningful connection that occurs there. And, uh, you know, th that's, that's the whole difference between just sort of like spray and pray kind of marketing versus like really zeroing in on who you want to talk to. You know, what to say to the people that you want to talk to. That's a big difference.

Robyn Sayles:

Oh a hundred percent. I want to talk a little bit about many of the methodologies we've talked about and the references we've given are for people who've been in business for a little while. I think it's pretty common when you get started, you kind of say yes to everybody because you need the money, cause you need to get the ball rolling. And then once things gets up and running, I think that's when people feel like they have the luxury to define and target their ideal client. But I do think you can do some of this work early on, early in development of a business. So I'd love to hear from you guys. If I don't have any existing clients, I don't have existing data to look back on and reflect on who my ideal client is.

Where do I start? What do I do, Kathleen? I'm gonna start with you. Cause I know you got a couple ideas around this.

Kathleen Seide:

There's a few things you can do to do some research into who is going to be. Changed by what you want to do, right. Who is going to be so impacted that they need to use your company or your services.

Start with Googling, start with, uh, some community forums, depending on what kind of service you you have. I was talking to somebody recently about actually going out into the community and talking to these groups of people face-to-face go where they hang out. And, you know, you don't know who specifically your ideal client is, but you know that it's, maybe students at university.

So you can go start being part of those groups and talking to some people or seeing where they hang out in the kind of things they talk about to help you hone down what you're looking at. And then you just get more and more specific and, and more and more engaged in those communities. And as that engagement increases, you understand them more and that'll help you make better decisions, but that also serves you over time because you're becoming part of that community.

And if that's the community you're serving, you're going to need to be part of it. Anyway.

Robyn Sayles:

I love that in our gorilla marketing episode, jinx had this great thing where he talked about the traction he gets on Reddit and that people always ask him, oh, how do I get that kind of traction on Reddit? And he's like, the simple answer is be a Redditor.

Be a part of the community. And I think so whether it's in the digital space or in face-to-face real life becoming a part of the community and asking genuine questions about what people need and how you can help them is a great place to start. Shea. Do you have any other thoughts how people get started when they don't already have clients?

Shea Jeffers:

I would say it goes along the lines of what you guys are talking about already. It's that lifestyle. You have to be living in the world of your potential clients so that you can understand them a little bit better. Understand what they're..

And listen. Just listen. Listen to the world around you. There are hints and breadcrumbs being dropped every day as you go about... especially if you're not just sitting back and tossing out ads at people.

If you're actually going out and engaging individuals and talking to them, Kathleen becoming a friend and becoming more than just a brief associated passing and by in networking, you start to hear the key words that match your skillsets. That Mets matches your personality. And then you can start to build on that.

I think we mentioned earlier, mirroring your company against a SIM another similar potential company. Like if you're entering a, particular marketplace, there are other businesses that are potential competitors or partners see who they are currently serving, and then see if you can serve those people better, or if they are missing a piece of the puzzle and then slide in that way.

Robyn Sayles:

I love that. And that's been particularly effective for me since the work that I do is like foundational brand messaging and strategy. I'm not going to design your logo. I'm not going to design your website, you know? And so, so finding those companies who are like-minded, who. Understand the importance of what I do and believe in the same philosophies that I do so that I can send my folks to them.

They can send their folks to me. And we work really well together. Like you come to me first and then you go to your web guy. Or you get your web guy and your web guy realizes, oh, you don't know who the fuck you're talking to. You need to go talk to Robin and then come back to me kind of thing.

So understanding the larger ecosystem of who you serve. So that you can figure out your place in it. And, and like Shay said, who you can work with and fill in those gaps to provide a larger service to those clients is pretty, it's pretty fun. It's pretty fucking amazing when it, when those synergies happen and you can kind of create a broader experience and a cohesive experience for those clients. It's awesome.

Jinx. Anything you'd want to add about identifying an ideal client before you even have clients?

Chris 'Jinx' Jenkins:

Yeah. It's I talked earlier about being picky about which projects I take in which clients I work with. And I'll, I'll never forget, you know, I was, I was working with some blockchain development, uh, stuff, and I had a client come in or a potential client, a prospect, I suppose. Who wanted to like create this thing in the entertainment space, like, you know, for like music venues and such. So I'm like, "okay, well, cool. You know, so what's your experience in that space?" He's like, "oh, I don't really have any I'm I'm a doctor." And I see this all the time where people have a little bit of resources or they've had success in one area and they want to try and branch into some other area. And they just like, don't even know that marketplace at all.

They have zero effective experience there, and I'm a big fan of go with what, you know, you know, and your community, your skills, the people in your industry, those are, you know, those are gonna be the people that, you know, the things that, you know, if you're starting out in a space and you don't know anything about the space, you're not going to have a clue who an ideal client is because you don't know the space at all.

You know, and, and if, if you want to transition to another space, I'm not saying you can't do that, but again, if you want to be successful on Reddit, you have to be a Redditor. You know, if you're going to work in that community, if you're going to, you know, target some thing, you've got to spend some time like getting to know that space first. You have to build some experience in that space. You're not going to have any ability at all, to identify an ideal client until you understand what an ideal client in that space looks like.

Robyn Sayles:

And there's another opportunity for partnerships and collaboration as well. If you're trying to hop industries go make friends with people who are already in the industry that you're trying to hop into. A thousand percent.

And also when you go like go offer to assist, go offer to be an intern, go offer to, you know, do some backend work or whatever, cause you may also find, oh, actually I don't want to be in this industry. This is not as cool as I thought it was going to be. Y'all the grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence.

And so don't put all your eggs into that basket thinking you're going to launch a business over there and then get over there and find out, "oh fuck, I don't want to be here." That is the worst because then people feel like they have to keep doing it because there's, I've put so much time and effort into it.

Ooh. Sum cost we could do a whole episode on sum costs. You guys, I want to sort of round this out by talking about why. Why is it so important to identify an ideal client? And this is where we circle back around to the Google search idea, right? Because once you know who that ideal client is, You know who you're talking to, you know, how best to talk to them, you can use tools like Google search to do some amazing things, right?

Google search, YouTube. Those are the two largest search engines on the planet. And so the auto-complete in a Google search is your best marketing friend. When you know who you're talking to. Here's the example I give all the time in workshops.

If you were in the healthcare space. And you know that you have a service to help people eat healthier, right? People need to eat healthier. I have this great way to help people eat healthier. And so you might title an article five ways to eat healthier starting tomorrow. Guess what? Nobody's going to fucking read that article.

Right. Cause we all know we need to eat healthier, but it's about willpower. It's about so many other factors, right. And I'm not going to be drawn to an article called five ways to eat healthier starting tomorrow. But if you know me as your ideal client, right. And you know how I really talk and you know, the things I'm really struggling with on a day-to-day basis, you'll probably title that article five ways that you can stop being a slave to those goddamn Doritos starting tomorrow. And guess what? Now you got me now I'm reading that fucking article because Doritos are the bane of my existence when it comes to my healthcare journey. So understanding how people talk and how they think and what they might be searching for.

So, uh, Kathleen, how, how has Google search been impactful for you. What are some things you learned by maybe searching for what people are searching for in your space?

Kathleen Seide:

I've been using some of those Google analytics, Google search tools for a very long time. Well, I guess on internet time, it's a very long time.

And it, yeah, it defines what I write about what I, at this point, do you know, some of the live videos about, and write articles about on my blog and that sort of thing, for sure. And that creates a situation where people come knocking on my door for free. So I go and look at what people are concerned about. Or even better, I love creating content that hits multiple things. So I may have a specific customer that's coming to me because they matched up with the ideal customer stuff that I put out there. So I working with somebody who has certain questions and instead of just answering those questions for them, that becomes content.

So I answered their question and then I take that and I put it out there in the world because this is somebody I like working with. This is a problem they have. I put it out there in the world. And then more people start finding that because that's what they're looking for. That's the questions they have.

So I'm now passive in this process because I've just created this content once and put it out there. And now I have a stream of people who continually come to me or even better yet people refer them through that content to me.

Robyn Sayles:

I love it. Shay, how about you? How do you use search. And Google to your advantage there.

Shea Jeffers:

I wish I could remember the website. There's this specific website that actually showcases a whole, like. Ecosystem of words around different topics. Yeah.

Robyn Sayles:

It's called answer the public.

Shea Jeffers:

Okay. Answer the public. So as the public comes in very, very handy, because if you're ever find yourself stuck and you're trying to write some new content blog or just a new post altogether.

You can go in and say, okay, cool. I want to do a listicle, which is a logistic list of items. So you can go in there type that your, your main topic, and then just take the top 10 and then just do little tiny bites on each one of those that comes in really handy for creating quick content.

Robyn Sayles:

Love it. Jinx. How about you? Are there any particular ways you use search to your advantage?

Chris 'Jinx' Jenkins:

I talked in the guerrilla marketing episode about, you know, searching for questions that I know the answer to. And that's absolutely one of those things. If I'm trying to target people who have a specific kind of question, I searched the question and go look for the conversations around that question, you know, and that doesn't necessarily bring me immediately to a client, but it does give me some sense of what the conversations around that question look like. So that when I find that client, I already have some good idea of the backstory of the particular question or problem that they have. It's kind of a sneaky sort of third party, mind reading trick to just go look at like forum conversations or things along that line about the topic that you're trying to cover or the product that you're trying to offer so that you already have, you know, a really good sense of, of what your prospect ideal clients are talking about already in this space.

Robyn Sayles:

And I think in addition to that, how search helps us is it tells us how, how they're asking the questions.

What words are they using? And so for me, I'm so focused on language. Like that's the difference between five ways to eat healthier and five ways to stop being a slave to Doritos. How are people asking the question because then you know how to structure your title so it's a direct response to that question.

So that the next time somebody types that question into Google, they're going to see your stuff over somebody else's stuff, right. Or they're going to see your stuff in amongst everybody else's stuff. So understanding the, how, how are people talking? What part of it are they concerned about? And I want to share with y'all a specific example that just happened with a client I'm working with.

So I'm working with a client she's in the healthcare space. She does this very niche thing in the healthcare space, and there's a lot of misinformation related to her service and her industry. And so she's specifically is trying to build her thought leadership on YouTube. So we went on this whole YouTube data gathering mission together, and it was very informative.

And so here's one of the most enlightening things that we discovered is start searching for the questions on YouTube. See what autocompletes look at all of the auto-complete variations. So, whatever the question is, "Natural cures for blank." as an example, what are all the things that come up?

What are all the variations of that question? Click on those. And what are the top three to five videos for each of those questions? What is the information that people are already consuming? Then we went and we looked at the comments for all of those videos. What are the questions that people are asking in the resources that they've already been given? So we know that these are the top five videos. All of these videos have a million plus views, but people still have questions. And those questions are in the comments of those videos. So now we know as Shay pointed out earlier, what the gaps are in the existing content, that's catching people's attention and we know how to answer it specifically.

So now she has a whole range of content that she can plan out that specifically answers the questions that people still have watching those popular videos. She can also, because she's in the market to do this. This is not the right tactic for everybody, but she can also go and debunk incorrect information in those videos.

So if the video that's getting the most views is "How to change your life tomorrow with this food," she might create a video that's like, "why this food isn't going to change your life tomorrow." And what can. Right. So that we're specifically playing off of where we know the audience already is. And we're speaking directly to them in direct response to their question, because we know exactly what they're asking because YouTube fills in those search results for us and Google fills in those search results for us.

So I would say if you're not already doing this. Take advantage of Google search auto-complete take advantage of YouTube auto-complete. If you have Google analytics, you can look at keywords and do keyword searches in that. If you don't have Google analytics, what the fuck is wrong with you? Go get Google analytics.

And then also answer the public. Answer the public is a great tool that will give you a ton of information about what exactly related to your field or specialty people are asking for and, how best you can answer it with your content. And we'll put a link to that in the show notes for this.

So start early. Do some market research,.Find the communities where people are going to best be served by who you are and what you do and what you have to offer. Look back at your existing clients, who did I have the best engagements with? What was most fulfilling for me? What was most fulfilling for them? And what are the trends there that tell me how to target and talk to more people like that. And then go hang out in those communities, go talk to them where they already live.

I say that all the time, where do people already live and go there. Don't expect them to come to you again, it ain't field of dreams. You got to go do the work. You got to go talk to them in their space and in their language, which should also be your language. If you're ideally suited to help this particular subset of individuals.

So we'll have some notes and some links about some of the stuff we talked about down in there. Thank you guys so much for hanging out with us. And if you have any additional questions about how else we can help you unfuck your business, please come hang out with us on Facebook, or you can send us an email to WTF@UnfuckMyBusiness.com and you will find all those links in the show notes below. We think you're awesome, and we'll see you next Tuesday.

Outtro:

What the fuck are you waiting for? Take what you learned in this episode and do something with it. You'll find all the links and resources we talked about in our show notes for this episode and go to unfuck my business.com to subscribe to the show.

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