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My Ideal Customer – More Marketing Stuff

Last week I started to talk about the unique selling proposition.  That was step one of the marketing class that my friend Justin and I both undertook.  The class is pretty good, but has some gaps, but that what you get when you sign up early and pay the bargain price =)

Well, step 2 (I’m a couple weeks behind on this, but luckily there are no tests) it to define who my idea customer is.  In my head this sounds easy, my ideal customer is anyone that will pay me a lots of money for my applications (or even services, but I’m trying to move out that model if possible).  However, after listening to the class, I learned there is a lot more to it.  Every person you interact can connect with you on different levels.  For example, I met my best friend James one night at a pick up game of flag football.  We had an instant chemistry, and someone knew after that night we would be lifelong friends.  Now I’ve met other people that when I initially met them, they drove me crazy, and hated to be in the same room with them.  Then we eventually built some rapport, and started to find common ground, and some of those people are now friends of mine that I keep in close contact with.  What I personally learned is that I often saw traits in other people that I hated about myself.  Until I realized that I didn’t them, I actually hated that part of my own personality, I couldn’t bring myself to like them.  Anyway, enough with the psychology lesson.  What is important is to know what sort of people you want to deal with, probably on a long term basis.  According to the class, you want to be able to visualize a single person that will be your customer.  It helps to avoid trying to sell to everyone, the whole be all things to all people.  We all know it doesn’t work, but it doesn’t stop us from trying.  Since I need to keep blogging, I figured the best way would be for me to figure it out with you… my audience (that I really hope will eventually show up.  ha ha)

My Ideal Customer is:
1.  someone that knows what they need, and can articulate it to me.
2. someone that can express their needs without being blunt/as ass.  (we all know the type)
3. someone that can afford what I’m selling
4. someone with vision for their organization.  Someone that is constantly seeking improvement.
5.  someone that understand their business.  For example, for me, they should fully understand their Service business and it’s problems.
6.  someone looking to build a long term relationship.  I don’t want a 1 and done customer.
7.  someone in their mid 30’s to early 40’s.
8.  and entrepreneur.
9.  someone with a small family and wants to be able to spend more time with time.
10. someone that reads self improvement books and listens to audio books.
11. someone that LOVES what they do.
12. someone that has seen multiple ways of doing business, not just a single company for their whole career.
13. someone very unassuming.  Doesn’t live and die by name brands or status symbols.
14.  someone that believes in the constitution of the US.
15.  a gun owner, or at least pro 2nd amendment.
16. someone that takes pride in being prepared for possible disasters (corporate or personal)
17. someone unwilling to accept government handouts in exchange for government control.
18. a Green Bay Packer fan (couldn’t resist)
19. someone that understands that success comes from hard work, not just a good idea.
20. someone that roots for the underdog.
21. low maintenance.  Won’t be pestering me daily with every little thing.
22. someone that can make a decision.
23. someone that takes care of their employees and wants to see them happy. (family too).
24. eats primal/paleo lifestyle.

The deal killers, or traits that I don’t want to deal with:
1.  short sighted, doesn’t look at the long term picture.
2.  Micro-managers.  Needs to be a hands off type person that will give a destination, but will allow people to get there any way they choose.
3. someone that thinks the status quo is good enough.
4. someone that procrastinates and just won’t pull the trigger, even when they know exactly what they should do.
5. vegan

Finally, you have to name your avatar (and I don’t mean the blue guys in that movie)…  So for me, my Avatar will be Alex.  I know it’s bias, but for those of you that don’t know, I have the coolest little boy, just about to turn 2.  So I can’t think of a name better than his =)  He will be 6′ tall, athletic build, brown hair, blue eyes.

Think I have him in my mind…
now…  who’s your ideal customer???  according to the class, we need this guy/girl for later lessons…  so start picturing =)

A Whole New Adventure – Joint Ventures

About 2 months ago, I did the SC Mud Run with a friend of mine that I consulted with. During the hour car ride, and then over dinner and drinks, we realized that we both were interested in launching products. My friend Mike also had a lot of ideas of things we could develop and sell to companies. Finally, I found a like minded soul. Since then, we’ve actually designed the first 2 pieces of Mike’s PP offering. The bad news, and it’s not really bad, but it is more work, is that now we’re looking to do a joint venture between the 2 of us. While this i awesome because I finally have someone to help with the workload, it brings about a whole new set of challenges.
1. We need to determine how to structure ourselves into a new entity. This may be a new LLC, it might be an operating agreement, or it might be both. While it sounds easy because I’ve already set up a business, it turns out because I already exist it’s a whole new set of challenges. I need to work closely with SAP to make sure that I don’t lose all of the development work I’ve done. Partnering with SAP is a great thing, but I’m being told I can’t transfer all of my development work to a new company. So I’m working through those details now.
2. For the first time, I need to work with someone else and listen to their ideas, and work together. Simple things like coming up with a company name, deciding where to incorporate, etc. Not bad, but I can’t just make a decision. We need to work together.
3. Determining revenue splits. It’s great because i have someone to share the costs with, but now I have to split the revenue as well.
And that’s just the things we know so far… I’m exciting for this new venture, but like every change, it’s always a bit scary. I’ll keep you posted as things progress.