A simple strategy for creating an ideal customer avatar so you can build your business with your dream customers
As you know there are trends in the digital space that come and go like 70’s shoulder pads however what we’re talking about in today’s post will be around forever.
Yes, it may evolve over time and the name of it may change to reflect the changing world but essentially this one thing, this specific marketing strategy, lies at the core of every successful business - online and offline.
What is this mysterious marketing unicorn that will exist forever, you ask?
Well, when it comes to starting and growing your business, we want to get clear on who we are in business for.
This person is called your ICA - Ideal Customer Avatar.
In marketing, we create a profile for this person, fleshing out their personality, interests, fears, frustrations, needs and desires.
It’s something big brands spend a lot of time cultivating because they know that when they’ve dialled in their ICA, they can write better copy, market more effectively, bring the best products and services to the market and make more sales.
So, dear reader, as an online business owner you should be approaching your marketing strategy in the same way.
Today’s post is two-pronged ~ first, we’ll break down what an ICA is and how to create an authentic profile. Once we’ve covered that, we’ll get a little more strategic about how we can find our ICA online.
My goal: I hope that by the end of this post you’ll have a clearer understanding of who your dream customer is and where they’re hanging out online so you can grow your business by serving people who are a perfect fit.
Sound good? Let’s dive in!
What’s An ICA?
ICA stands for your Ideal Customer Avatar. This is the person you wish to serve in your business. They value your content, share your posts, buy from you and tell their friends.
This is your dream customer and the person you think about with every marketing decision you make.
It’s a great idea to get super specific about who your ICA is so you can really get to know your customers. Niche down to blow up as they say in the marketing world!
You’ll want to drill down parts of their lives that seem irrelevant at first but that can ultimately govern the outcome of your business.
Is your ICA a money-strapped student or a successful businesswoman?
Is she a stay at home mum with three kids or single, with no dependants and more free time?
Is she outdoorsy or a homebody?
Fashion-conscious, health-conscious, money-conscious?
Is a free spirit, collects crystals, reads her horoscope every morning?
I know these are just random questions but understanding who your ICA is on a deeper level is incredibly important because it will determine the words you use in your marketing, how you formulate your copy and the tone and style of your social media posts.
Everything you share with the world starts with understanding who you are talking to.
I’ve created a free workbook, Grow Your Business With Your Dream Customers, to help you explore who your ICA is in greater detail. You can grab it here.
The Power Of One
In copywriting, we have a rule called the power of one.
It basically means that with every piece of content we make sure we’re:
Speaking to 1 person
Sharing 1 idea
And offering 1 CTA
It’s a handy principle to adopt here when you’re just starting out. Focus on streamlining your content and message down to 1 clear agenda that answers:
Who am I speaking to?
What idea am I sharing?
And what action do I want my reader to take?
Experience Is Your Greatest Gift
The most powerful resource you have at your disposal are your life experiences.
These are the lessons and teachings you’’ve picked up throughout your life. Everything you’ve gone through has brought you to this point in your life where you’re in a position to educate, motivate, inspire or entertain our audience and ultimately make a difference in peoples lives.
Whether your experience is backed up by qualifications or whether you attended the school of hard knocks and now have the ability to turn your mess into your message ~ it’s all part of your experience, part of your story, and your story is the greatest gift you can share with your customers.
Your ICA Is You… In The Past
In most cases, your ICA is you, only a few steps behind where you are now. They’re walking the same path as you but are looking for a little support and guidance.
Therefore, you are the perfect person to hold their hand because you’ve already experienced what your ICA is experiencing. You can show her the way.
In essence, this lies at the very heart of compassionate marketing ~ the ability to share your story, products and services with your ICA in a sympathetic and understanding way.
Compassionate marketing is rooted in integrity and guided by love and understanding.
Finding Your ICA In A Saturated Market
Once you’ve established who your ICA is, the next thing you’ll want to think about is where they are online.
The digital space is noisy, overpopulated and polluted by distractions and misinformation.
So, when confronted with such a scenario, how do you find your audience in a saturated market?
Well, the good news is once you’ve created your ICA profile you’ll be in a great position to locate her and market your products and services in her vicinity.
Consider questions like this to get started:
Are they on Instagram or Facebook?
On TikTok or LinkedIn?
Do they like to read newspapers and magazines? If so, consider sharing your content in a blog.
Do they prefer to watch TV and listen to the radio? If so, perhaps videos and a podcast show is more up their street.
Understanding “how” your dream customer likes to consume content is as important as knowing "what" social media platform they like to be on.
The answers to these questions will inspire your social media strategy.
Your ICA Is Your Top Priority
Throughout the journey of your business, from conception to growth and scale, you’ll want to keep coming back to your ICA profile to make sure you’re still serving them in the best possible way.
It’s worth mentioning a couple of things before we wrap up:
1. More than one ICA
You may have more than one ICA in your business, which is perfectly fine. If this is the case, then create a separate ICA profile for each and when you write copy be crystal clear who you’re talking to so the different ICAs feel seen, heard and understood.
2. Your ICAs journey
Remember, that your ICA is on their own personal journey, like you. This means that their needs and desires may evolve over time. It’s up to you to decide if your business will serve them for a season or for a lifetime.
Where’s the Bow? Let’s wrap this up!
So, to summarise, knowing who your ICA is on a deeper level is essential. No matter the stage of business you’re in, understanding the people you wish to serve should be top of mind.
You’ll want to get crystal clear on the following:
1. Know who your ICA is and understand them on a deeper level. Imagine what it’s like to live their lives and walk in their shoes
2. Get into the nitty-gritty details, deciphering their passions, career choices, relationship status, financial situation, mindset and personality. Remember, my free guide holds your hands and walks you through how to do all of this
3. Use the copywriting rule of one, to help stay on track whenever you put pen to paper in your business
4. Your experience and life lessons make you the perfect person to guide your ICA. Don’t underestimate the power of your story. Your mess can be your message
5. You and your ICA are more alike than you may think! The only difference is where you are on the journey. Be sure to hold her hand and show her the best path to take
6. Once you know the full facet of your dream customer’s personality and life choices you’ll be in a better position to decide on the right social media platforms to use and what forms of content to share
7. Keep your ICA top of mind. Let her needs and desires inspire the content you share with the world. Speak directly to your ICA when writing words for your website and in social media captions. Your ICA should always be a top priority.
Alright, creative soul, that’s it for today.
Before you dash off to create something magnificent please take a hot minute to let me know, did you like this post?
I really want this blog to be a dialogue rather than a monologue. So, leave me a comment and let me know what’s the one takeaway you got from today’s post? I promise to reply.
All my love,
Psst: Don’t forget, if you’d like an extra hand nailing down your ICA then grab this workbook, Grow Your Business With Your Dream Clients.
It’s packed with exercises to help create the perfect ICA profile for your business and shows you how to embrace compassionate marketing techniques along the way.
What's more you can refer back to it again and again as you start and grow your business.
Just hit the link: Know Your Customer So Well They’ll Think You’ve Been Reading Their Journal