Do You Care for Your Target Market?
In this final post of what has been a very long sequence exploring the circuit questionnaire, I shall tackle perhaps the most important question: how do you care for your target market?
In a sequence running alongside this one, I argue the need for re-enchantment of marketing. It is through our enthusiasm, our passion, for our offer, our market and the wider transformation that results from our work, we contribute something positive. Follow the sequence on my new website, Market Together.
Marketing is an opportunity to be creative with our offer and the skills we bring to bring a real difference to prospects and other listeners alike. It is ultimately a spiritual discipline, contemplating the world we encounter and intervening to meet the needs we find there.
In a world obsessed with finance and the decline of capitalism, we witness the decline of care for others. This is clearly true for caring for those who are disadvantaged but erosion of care affects everyone. Without care we lose the essential ties of community and everyone suffers.
Care for Your Target Market
You can show care for your target market before, during and after you spend time with your client. At all times, they are your first concern. If there is a bond between you, the chances are your client will respond positively to your guidance and achieve what you promised when you made your offer.
Before the Deal
It is important to show not only you understand their problem but have some sense of how it feels. You share in their experience to some degree. This does not mean you must experience exactly what they experience but you show you understand and empathise with what they are going through.
This can be done through marketing; using stories and testimonials to convey your experience of the problem.
During the Deal
First, you are there to listen. This is your prime objective. Most people don’t have an opportunity to be heard in the working life and simply need space to think things through. Your role is to structure that space and make sure your client keeps moving forward. What moving forwards entails will depend on your offer and their needs.
It is also a good idea to over-deliver. I stipulate session length in my formal agreement and usually allow more time if necessary. I can bring the session to an end on time if I need to but it helps to be flexible. Also, offer unannounced bonuses. These can be relevant to your offer, eg a book, or some gesture, perhaps lunch!
After the Deal
Follow up and show you are interested in the progress made. I have had several coaches who have not got back in touch. This damages them in three ways. First, they cannot find out how effective their coaching has been months and possibly years afterwards. This is valuable information lost to them.
I would be much more likely to buy again from a coach who is interested in me. Some coaches come over as money-making businesses who just care about delivering their packages to as many people as they can. If they have a great reputation, they can get away with this but for most coaches, probably not.
Finally, I am less likely to recommend a coach who I don’t believe really cares. For most coaches, referrals are an essential means to find new clients. Testimonials are likely to be more detailed and insightful and referrals more likely.
Does care for your clients have to be genuine? Empathy can benefit your business and so perhaps it may seem it does not. Make it seem genuine and you might get away with it. I’m not convinced by this because your true feelings are likely to find expression however you attempt to disguise them.
There are things you can do to show you care. It is always a good idea to make sure they are part of your routine. Work out some way of showing you care, schedule it and use it! This is not about some sentimental effusion of emotion. It is about showing you share a concern and committed to helping; that you are reliable.
Your routine practice will ring true if you do really care. Act as if you care and you will find in time you do. The benefit of caring is mutual. Why should it be any other way?
Please let me know if this is helpful and if there are any points I could expand upon.