The other week I interviewed Alessandra Martelli on creating a marketing personas or customer avatars, and I wanted to write a bit more about it here, since it is very important to know as much as possible about your ideal client.
When you think about your freelance translation business, are you sure you are marketing to the right customers? Are you happy with the customers you work with? If not, you would benefit from creating an avatar or profile of your ideal customer. By creating a profile of your ideal client you can narrow down your target audience’s needs. You will find out what your prospective clients look for on your website and can develop more targeted communication and marketing. If you understand your ideal client and develop your communication so that it speaks the same language as your ideal client, you significantly increase your chances of getting found and hired.
1. Figure out your customer’s profile
Think about your business and the best customers you have or have had. Based on this you can ask yourself questions to find clients that are similar to your best customers and target them in your marketing. I have created a checklist of questions you can ask to get to know your ideal customer better and to create a customer profile or avatar for your translation business. The checklist is sent out in this month’s newsletter, and if you are not already a subscriber and want to get a hold of this checklist, you can enter your name and email address in the box to the right.
Here are some sample questions to ask:
- What industry is your customer in?
- Where is he/she located?
- How big is the company in revenue and number of employees?
- Customers role in purchasing decisions?
- What services do they ask for and why?
- What are the customer’s demographics and interests?
Etc. Try to be as specific as possible and write it down, you can even draw a picture of the ideal customer if you want.
2. Understand your market
After you have answered these questions you have a clear picture of your ideal customer. Now you can examine your market and why this customer is buying your services. You can find the answers by asking yourself the following questions: What are your customer’s problem? How can you help your ideal customer? By asking these questions it will also be easier to see what value you can provide to your ideal customers.
3. Make sure your marketing reflects your ideal customer
It is not enough to just find out who your ideal customer is and how you can possibly help this customer. You also need to take action and make sure your marketing is targeted toward this ideal customer. Make sure you think of this ideal customer and how you can help him or her when you create or edit your website, in your emails, letters and brochures, in your keywords for your website, in your LinkedIn-profile and your phone scripts.
As a freelance translator, the only way to stay competitive is to define your niche market and speak directly to the customers in it. When you customize your marketing to speak directly to the customers you want to work with, they will recognize you as the person they want to work with because they connect with you and feel like you understand them. You speak the same language.
For more information and help to create a marketing plan and get your year started right, check out the Quick Start Guide – 8 steps to a marketing plan for translators.