You've probably already heard that it's important to get clear on who you serve as a coach.
"Market to everyone, reach no one." That sort of thing. You understand it logically.
But there's a problem: you're scared that if you narrow in and focus your marketing on one group of people, you'll never get enough clients. You don't want to pick wrong.
So, what do you do?
Well, if you listen to most marketing experts, they'll tell you to create a "customer avatar."
That's a terrible idea. And I'm going to tell you why.
Why I Hate Customer Avatar EXercises
If you've never heard of a customer avatar, it's basically a detailed description of a made-up character. So you think about this fictional person's age, location, gender, problems, etc.
The idea is that once you build your avatar, all of your marketing becomes easier because now you have a reference point.
Which makes complete sense in theory.
Except that, in practice, it's 100% useless!
Why is that?
Because when most coaches* build these avatars, they don't have enough information about their ideal client.
So they're basically guessing. They spend all this time doing a theoretical exercise and feeling productive. Meanwhile, they haven't interacted with any potential clients the whole time.
And since the whole avatar is based on theory, it still doesn't tell you whether there are enough people like that who will invest in your coaching.
So, what's a coach to do?
How to Narrow Your Niche Without Guessing
Here's the approach that has worked best for me and my clients:
Choose someone real to base your marketing off of!
(I know, crazy concept right?)
There are two way you can go about this:
1) If you've already worked with someone who you would consider an ideal client, use them as your avatar. Think back to what made them an ideal client. Then use those attributes to get specific in your marketing.
2) If you haven't worked with someone who you would consider an ideal client, be your own avatar. Think back to a time when you were at your lowest and most ready for change. Then use that version of you to get specific in your marketing.
The reason these two approaches work better is because they keep you grounded in reality.
You can figure out where to find more of those types of people. You can figure out what you would need to say in order to make them interested in learning more. And you know that if you're able to attract them, they have a good chance of actually investing.
The Main Takeaway
Don't guess when it comes to your marketing. Just build on what you know by focusing on the 20% of your current audience or client base that is going to yield 80% of the best case studies, referrals, and revenue for you.
Now go get after it,
*Note: There are some coaches who are further along and have a lot of data about who they serve. For them, creating a fictional avatar that represents a cross-section of those ideal clients could be a helpful tool to simplify things. Of course, once you have that level of clarity, you probably don't need the avatar anyway (except maybe if you're building a team).