Did you ever think about who your ideal customer is? Every business has an ideal customer, though not many business owners think that through.

Marketing is the lifeblood of every business. If we don’t have customers and meet their wants and desires, we’re out of business. We could have the greatest product or service in the world, but if no one wants it, it doesn’t matter.

Therefore the customer matters, what the customer desires matters, and our success depends on our ability to see what they want or what their problem is that they need solved.

But can any of us solve everyone’s problems or meet everyone’s wants and desires? Obviously not, so that begs the question, who is your ideal customer? Who is the customer whose problem or desire is something that you have a solution for? If you don’t know, how can you meet the need?

Let’s look at an example. Years ago there was a pizza business and they set out to determine who their ideal customer was. They found that their ideal customer was one who:

* didn’t want to go to a sit down restaurant,
* only wanted pizza, not spaghetti, burgers or lasagna,
* didn’t want a freezer pizza but a fresh one,
* didn’t want to wait an hour or more ending up with a cold pizza,
* didn’t want a poor quality pizza delivered late.

Hey, come to think of it, I could have been their ideal customer! Well, anyway, these insightful fellows had determined who their ideal customer was and then developed their product and service to meet a desire in the market.

Let me share with you their USP or Unique Selling Proposition, maybe you’ll recognize it because over the years it has become well known:

Domino’s – A fresh, hot pizza delivered in 30 minutes or less, guaranteed.

They understood their ideal customer and uniquely positioned themselves to meet the wants and desires of that person. The USP simply summed it up.

What I’d like you to do in your business is to define who your ideal customer is. It takes a lot of work to figure it out. It’s not always obvious, and it’s not even always what the customer thinks it is. We often look too much at the surface and don’t really dig in and find what their wants and desires are, or what the problems are that stress them out and keep them up at night.

Once you have a clear picture then we can look at development of your USP. We’ll do some brainstorming on this next time, but for now let me leave you with the 4 questions your USP should be able to answer for your ideal customer:

1. Why should I listen to you?
2. Why should I do business with you instead of everyone else?
3. What can your product or service do for me that the others can’t?
4. What can you guarantee me that no one else can?

Be sure to take the time to understand who your ideal customer is first, then start to answer those 4 questions. Good luck!

If you need help brainstorming this, visit with a mentor, trusted business associate, or contact me and we can work together to answer those questions and develop your USP.


by Steven Schlagel