Why your Ideal Client REALLY doesn’t matter (as much as you think it does)
Updated: Feb 19
"Define your ideal client FIRST and everything else will flow from there".
In fact sometimes, being TOO specific, too soon, can really hinder your progress in your business!
Find out what REALLY matters - and how to start magnetically attracting the right clients into your world from day 1.
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In the early stages of building my business online I was hearing one consistent message “define your IC before anything else. THEN when you know who you’re targeting, you can work out offers to suit them”.
“If your offers aren’t selling, it’s because you don’t have your ideal client defined properly”.
I spent soooooo much time thinking about this! And I had a pretty good idea in my mind of roughly who I wanted to work with - but every time I put a post out there and my services didn’t sell, I would go back to wrestling with my IC again and thinking I must be doing something wrong.
Was I not talking in her language?
Was I being too nice? Was I being too aggressive and bolshy?
Was I putting her off with the occasional rant?
Did she think I was too salesy?
Did she think I was obsessed with money because I talked about money mindset, or did she think I was just like all the other coaches out there?
Was I looking in the wrong place for her? Did I have a Facebook group full of the WRONG people?
Was I attracting people at the wrong stage of their journey? Did I need to be targeting people who had been struggling for a long time rather than people who were new in business? Was my content appealing to people who just weren’t ready to invest?
Did I need to adjust my messaging and completely rewrite my website to spell out who I was looking for?
Why wasn’t she buying?!!!
Guess what? After agonising over this, aligning everything in my business with this ‘perfect client’ and beating myself up for yet months over not having it quite right, yet, because my programmes STILL weren’t selling… something snapped!
I started doing things differently - and suddenly started seeing results. It was pretty much literally an overnight change.
You see, knowing WHO your ideal client is doesn’t automatically mean you’re going to be able to sell your services to them - or that you’re going to come up with the right services.
Let’s just think about skincare for a moment, as an example. I’m the perfect ideal client for luxury skincare brands like Clarins, Lancome, Elizabeth Arden, and sadly I’m the target demographic now for anti-ageing serums, lotions and potions… I know, I don’t look a day older than my 29 years. Ahem.
No matter how perfect a match for their ‘ideal client’ I am in terms of the demographics, I am NEVER going to be interested in buying their stuff.
Why? Because I don’t care about the outcome!
They could infiltrate my newsfeed, bash me over the head with scary wrinkly pictures and say ‘ooooh, look what will happen if you don’t use our product!’ til the cows come home - it’s not going to make me reach for my purse.
Why? Because it isn’t about who I am and what boxes I happen to fit into.
It’s not even to do with what my situation is in life right now, my age, whether I’ve drunk a few too many bottles of wine in my life (have), whether I’ve been ravaged by child-induced sleep-deprivation (definitely have), whether I read Red magazine (now and then!) or Tatler or OK (only if I’m desperate at the hairdresser’s - can’t be doing with all the adverts and fakery!)
And as a side note I’m not interested in their magic secret formula, their Oxy Q10 Tri-Wrinkle-Smoothing Ultra Defense Complex or whatever it is. No matter how glam & pseudo-sciencey they make it sound it doesn’t interest me.
Because the result doesn’t matter to me. I may live to regret that, but I’m embracing my big pot of Nivea and my laughter lines for all they’re worth right now.
It’s not about WHO it’s for.
It’s about what MATTERS to those people.
It’s about the WHAT rather than the who - what can you do for them? How can you help them?
Does that make sense so far?
So instead of thinking so hard about exactly who your ideal client is, try focusing on what it is they want to achieve in their lives. What is that specific outcome that you can provide and why does it matter to them?
So with my 1:1 clients, we break it down using a 6 step process to really get clear on the psychographics - the emotional drivers. Because we buy with emotion, we’re emotional creatures, right?
It’s about personality. Values - not demographics.
Join me in my membership, The Aligned Mind & Business Academy FREE for 14 DAYS and take control.
So the WHAT is a big part of the picture. You need to be selling something that appeals to people’s emotional needs, not just what you THINK they need.
The other thing you need to get clear on is YOUR values. Who YOU are. We so often think selling things is all about the client. It’s not. It’s about the connection the client feels with you or your product. It’s about emotion again.
Why do you choose one brand over another? Because it reminds you of the things you value. You buy sturdy, trusty knickers from M&S because you know they value quality. You buy from certain brands because they’re ethical - there’s massive power in that these days. We’ll pay more for the same electricity because it’s sustainable and ethical. You buy things that remind you of good times in your life, things that have helped you in the past, things that press your happy buttons.
That’s why it’s so important to know YOUR values and tell your story to your audience - because they really connect with that. We don’t with logic, we buy from people we like.
So think about you and what you bring to the table - first and foremost.
What most of us do is start with working out this ideal client and thinking we’ve then got to behave a certain way to impress them, to filter ourselves or we might upset them. So we’re treading on eggshells all the time and putting out this super-filtered, ‘safe’ messaging so as not to offend.
I would love you to flip that around today and start putting yourself out there to the world as YOU are, not what you think your ideal client wants.
Because you ARE your USP!
When I did these two things, I found that my ideal clients found ME!
I didn’t have to go searching for them. I just created something that I knew people needed and put myself out there as ME, warts and all. Do that and the right people will be attracted in to your world.
So does ideal client matter at all?
YES. It’s an important piece of the puzzle - but it’s not the whole puzzle and it doesn’t have to be the first piece.
I would love you to look at it in a different way now.
If you have a clear idea of who you want to serve in mind from the offset then - brilliant! Get out there and start talking to them in your messaging - because there’s no doubt that being clear on who you’re talking to allows you to really refine things, from your branding to your services - once you know who your IC is you can start to engage with them, survey them and find out what they NEED.
But the key thing I want you to take away today is that you don’t have to have it totally figured out before you do anything in your business and before you start selling your services.<