Marketing to Find Your IDEAL Client
Let me make one thing 100% clear right off the top. Everyone has a different profile of their ideal client. My ideal client might be someone that you think is a jerk. It’s like most things in life, different people like and are attracted to different types.
This being the case, the first thing you need to figure out is what kind of client would be ideal for YOU.
When you’re just starting out trying to get clients in any field, there is a tendency to be VERY non-discriminatory. You want to make money and you’ll basically take anyone on who is willing to give you cash. The sooner your change your approach on this one, the better off you’ll be.
Working with people who are difficult or obnoxious just isn’t worth the money. I can see your head nodding in approval right now. It’s true. No one wants to work with people where there’s not a good fit.
The first step to figuring out who your ideal client would be is to look at your current business and professional relationships. Make a quick list of the people you do business with. In addition to those folks, make a list of your personal friends. The ones you get along with best.
When you finish making that list, your next task is to make another list. Now list the five primary traits that these folks possess that you find appealing.
What you’re developing is a PROFILE of the kind of people you tend to get along with. You want to make sure that you ONLY work with people you like. If not, it’s just not worth it.
This isn’t to say that you ONLY work with people you like and don’t give a darn about the financial side. But, that will come later.
Imagine if ALL of your CLIENTS were people you’d want to have over to your house for dinner. I want the work you do with clients to be AS fun as having friends over for a meal. I am pretty sure that’s NOT what it’s like for you now. We’re going to change that with this approach.
Let me give you an example. I have a client I’ll call Bill. Bill is the client I have the easiest time working with. Here are the five traits that Bill has that I really like.
1. Bill takes direction really well. He’s coachable.
2. Bill is always polite and respectful to me.
3. Bill never makes excuses for his actions or behavior.
4. Bill doesn’t have to feel like he’s the boss.
5. Bill is 100% honest.
These are the top five traits I could think of about Bill. There are others, but these are pretty much the top five reasons that I enjoy working with him. When I list the top 5 traits of my other clients that I really enjoy working with, I find many of the same traits in them.
I now know which traits are SUPER important to me in a client.
Additionally, I have found a number of other traits that are also important to me. I’d consider these secondary, but they are still very important. They include:
* Letting me be “in charge” of the process
* Always being willing to do the work and not leaving it to me
* Sending me my share of the $$ on time without prompting
* Responding quickly to my emails and phone calls
* Sending me status updates on our work regularly
I would suggest that in addition to your top 5 traits you come up with some secondary traits like I’ve just done here as well. This list of 10 items will give you a VERY clear picture of what’s important to you in a potential client.
Don’t worry if you feel ODD or WEIRD about things that you put down on your list. It’s what’s important to YOU. Don’t worry about what people might THINK of your choices. It’s none of their business. This is about YOU and finding YOUR ideal client.
For example, I put down: “Letting me be in charge . . .”. Some might think that I’m some kind of a control freak and somehow that’s “bad”. Don’t worry about that. Just figure out what works for you. This one happens to be important to ME.
You might be thinking: “The list I’m making is a list of traits I like in my friends, NOT just my clients”. You would be 100% right. My idea is to make it so the traits you like in your friends will ALSO be present in your business clients.
WHERE Do You FIND Your Clients?
Once you know the type of client you want, now you have to find them. The problem is that ACTIVELY looking for clients is often the WORST way to get the RIGHT clients.
When you go out looking for people, the ones you find are often NOT the ones you really need to create a successful business.
Instead, the idea is to attract the right people to you. The key difference is to set up a system that ATTRACTS people to you.
Set up YOUR Websites
You’ll need to set up a few different websites to make this system work. Don’t worry, these will be easy to set up. I’ll give you examples of each that you can copy.
It’s my suggestion that you set up a website and drive potential clients to that site to find and attract clients. I’ll call this site your authority site. From that site, you’ll have a couple of other websites that will accomplish very specific tasks.
I’ve found this to be the simplest and most cost effective way to attract new clients.
Your “AUTHORITY” Site
The goal of your authority site is two-fold. First, to get people to find you online. Second, once they get to the site to establish YOU as the expert in your field.
Once they get to your authority site, they may NOT be the “right” type of people for you. We’ll figure that one out a bit later.
In my case, my authority site is FredGleeck.com. It’s set up to attract potential clients and establish me as an expert in the field of information marketing. That’s MY specialty.
Check out my site to see what I mean here. In fact, feel free to COPY any or all of the elements and concepts I use on the site. They are working pretty well for me!
One of the first things you’ll notice on my site is the tag line. I put it in red and it says: “Resources to help YOU Build an Ethical Information Marketing Business!” This line makes it clear that I have no interest in doing business with anyone who is doing SHADY stuff.
You need to do the same. Come up with a TAG LINE that you put somewhere near the top of your site. This should let your visitors know the kind of client you’re trying to attract as well as the kind of person you are.
Getting People Visit YOUR Authority Site
In order for people to find YOU, they’ll have to find your authority site. How do you make that happen? There are a number of different ways. Some of them paid and some of them free.
Let’s talk here JUST about one of the free methods. For me, it’s been the most effective. Blogging. On my authority site, FredGleeck.com, I do a lot of blogging about my topic. I suggest you do the same for yours.
I do both written and video blogs. The way that I write and the videos I create tend to attract the “right” potential clients for me. I want you to do the same. Over time you will!
The “trick” is to title your blog posts with titles that contain the KEYWORDS that you’re trying to target. Words that the RIGHT potential clients of yours would use when searching.
Don’t spend your time trying to get traffic to your other sites we’ll talk about later. Spend all of your time generating traffic to your authority site. From there, give potential clients links to your other sites we’ll talk about.
Doing this will keep your efforts concentrated. Trying to generate traffic to ALL of these sites would dilute your efforts. Don’t do it.
Your OTHER Sites
Once you’ve established that you are indeed an expert in your field with your authority site, you’ll need a number of additional sites that will serve other purposes.
AGAIN, don’t think this is a big deal. You can COPY all of my sites and have them up very quickly!
I’ll call the next site your CONSULT site. My example for this one is the site, ConsultWithFred.com.
On this site I offer people a 20 minute consultation for $100. They can only use this option ONCE. And, they can also apply the $100 towards certain other products that I offer.
Take a look at that site NOW.
A few years ago, I had this site set up so that people had to pay me $500 for 90 minutes of my time. I made the change to my current model for a couple of reasons.
First, the $500 price tag seemed a bit high for an entry point for my services. Second, when the economy tanked, the price was a bit steep for someone who was working with me for the first time.
Whenever someone finds me, either through my authority site or through any other means, I use this site to see if they are REAL. Whenever I get a call or an email from someone asking to “talk” to me about my services I direct them to this site.
Coaching and consulting I do for money. I chat with my friends. I don’t want YOU to fall into the trap of doing free consultations. This is a bad idea. Your CONSULT site will make it easy for you to avoid this trap.
This site will do one primary thing for you.
It will help you screen out the lookey-loos. These are the people who CLAIM they may eventually give you money but they never do. It’s not worth your time and effort to spend time with these folks.
Don’t give away your services for FREE. Bad idea. It RARELY results in REAL business. People who aren’t willing to pay a little bit up front will seldom turn out to be real.
The next site I’d like you to look at I’ll call your TESTIMONIAL site.
If you can, get some of your existing clients to record videos about you and your services. In my case, I picked 3 of my Joint Venture partners to use. For an example, go to JVwithFred.com. Again, feel free to copy exactly what I’ve done on this site.
I set up Skype interviews with these 3 guys. We spoke for around 10 minutes or so in each case. I asked them how it was to work with me. I got them to give me some honest feedback about how it was to work with me.
Anyone who watches these videos will get a good idea about how it would be to work with me. This site is instrumental to helping me find and secure my ideal clients. Once again, I suggest you do something very similar. In fact, just COPY what I’ve done to save you time.
The final site I’d like you to consider to attract your idea client is your ONGOING REVENUE site.
Set up this kind of site to find a way to get people to pay you money on a regular (usually monthly) basis. Once they start to work with you monthly, you can then trade them up to more in-depth and expensive client relationships.
I’ll give you two examples to look at here: BootcampByPhone.com and FredCoaching.com.
Both of these sites have been set up to get people into short term, monthly coaching deals with me.
I suggest you either pick one or both of these to copy.
These are simple sites that try and get people to commit to working with you on a monthly basis with no long term contract. This is good for both you and them. It allows you to figure out whether they are your TYPE of client.
If they aren’t, they can be gone in a month. If they are the right kind of client for you, you may be able to trade them up into a long term, ongoing relationship.
So let me summarize the process for you. First, provide them with a lot of valuable free information in your field using your authority site.
Then, provide people with a lower priced option to SAMPLE you and your work.
Then, trade people up to more expensive, sometimes ongoing paid relationships with you.
Finally, convert those clients into long term, high paying clients.
At each step of the way, you’ll get a feel for what the people are like. Often times, I’ll be able to tell from the first 20 minute phone call if I’d want to do work with people again.
I’m sure YOU will get similar feelings.
If at any point you get the feeling like this person is not YOUR KIND OF PERSON . . . . STOP! Do not continue working with them. Remember that you established your list of primary and secondary traits of people you want to work with.
Check at each step of the process whether the people you work with are those kind of people. If they are NOT, then do NOT continue to work with them.
It will take a while, but soon, you’ll be working with your IDEAL clients.