As a woman, you’re a natural communicator. You share dating tales, swap recipes and rave about your favorite product finds to your girlfriends. In short, you thrive on having a strong sense of community to balance out your busy, hectic lifestyle.
Surrounding yourself with like-minded individuals, however, isn’t limited to your personal life. When you form that same intimacy with your customers, they’ll continuously purchase your products and recommend your services. The decision to return to a place of business, how much people are willing to pay for a product or service, and what they tell their family and friends about their customer experience depends on how emotionally invested they’re in your brand.
Get into the minds of your audience
Think about the types of individuals who will be attracted to your brand and study their behaviors, values and lifestyle. What are their deepest desires? What motivates them? What interests do you have in common? Make them into a real life character as if you are developing a novel, and write a detailed description of their characteristics. Then start collecting your target market’s demographics, including age, income, education level, marital status and more importantly, their buying habits.
There are several creative ways you can gather information. The first place to start is with your competitors. Browse their websites or visit their stores to get an idea of what types of people are purchasing their products. You can also peruse the media kits of magazines your target market is likely to purchase, which are available in the advertising section of a publication’s website. If you own a yoga studio, you might examine the sales kit of Yoga Journal or Natural Health, whereas if you’re a fashion retailer, you would view the sites of Vogue, Lucky or InStyle magazine. Another option is to create a survey and offer site visitors an incentive for completing the questionnaire such as a 20% discount off one of your products, a $100 gift certificate or a free giveaway to increase your response rate.
Say it like you mean it
Now that you have a better idea of who you’ll be targeting, it’s time to figure out what you’ll say once you have their attention. When you develop your message, it should communicate your unique selling proposition (USP) or competitive advantage. How does your product or service help improve your audience’s quality of life? How does your customer service experience differ from other businesses in your industry?
As you’re writing your marketing message, think in terms of how you want them to feel. In Tranquilista: Mastering the Art of Enlightened Work and Mindful Play, author Kimberly Wilson writes, “When defining your brand, crystallize the experience you want to create. What emotion do you want stirred up when people come into your space, buy your product, consult with you on the phone, or interact with you or your business in any way?”
A great example of crafting an emotion-filled message is L’Oreal’s tagline: “Because I’m worth it!” Their message caters to the self-assured woman who knows regardless of the cost, she is well worth the expense. Other things to consider are clarity and length. You should be able to get your point across in one easy-to-remember sentence and use it throughout your marketing efforts, so your audience will be able to easily identify your brand.
Remember it’s not just about who you know; it’s how well you know them, and like any long-term relationship this takes time. The key is to create value, be consistent and remain authentic.
How will you get to know your customers a little better? Share in comments.