Targeting Potential CustomersWhen you are on the lookout for potential customers, you want to make sure you’re focusing your energy in the right places. Remember that not everyone fits the profile, so spending time and money on trying to attract those outside your target demographic will be a waste of your resources. An effective way to find potential customers for your business is to ask yourself the following questions.

  • Can they afford your products/services? Of course, it’s impossible to know everyone’s financial situation, but you can get a good idea by looking for certain clues. For example, a consultant for a high-end ladies’ jewelry company should consider factors such as which town the potential customer lives in, if she wears designer clothing, if she drives a luxury car, etc. If your company sells products that range in price, consider the average and build an ideal customer profile from there.
  •  Are they the decision maker when it comes to the purchase? There are several different ways that people handle finances within their households. Some couples agree on a reasonable level of autonomy when it comes to making a purchase. Either person can buy groceries or even a new lamp for the living room without consulting each other, but neither would buy a car or book a vacation without both agreeing to it first. Be sure that the person you are targeting as a potential customer has the ability to make decisions about purchasing your products. This especially applies to products and services geared toward young children and teenagers. A skin care company’s acne treatment is mostly used by those between ages 15-21, but is almost always actually purchased by the parent. Whoever has the final say about a purchase is your potential customer. 
  • How much do they need the product/service?  Ask yourself if you are fulfilling a need or solving a problem for a potential customer with your product. Someone who will be returning to the work force after a long hiatus staying home to raise her children may need all new makeup and accessories to complete her professional appearance. A cosmetics or jewelry consultant would consider this person a potential customer because there is a certain level of need for the products and services offered. The most effective way to find out if a need for your product exists is to ask the right questions. Demonstrate a sincere interest in people by asking them questions about themselves. Give them an opportunity to talk about their family, interests, and hobbies. When you discover that the person needs your product, you’ll know you are talking to a potential customer.

Targeting your niche toward the right people will help you spend your time and marketing resources efficiently, which will in turn allow you to have long term success. By asking the above questions, you are creating a sort of customer profile that can be used to identify potential customers.

How have these questions helped you find your own customers? Are there any other questions you would add to our list? Please share your comments below!

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