Before you can start selling your products, you need to first know who you are marketing to.

You need to know who your customers are, their likes and dislikes, and their buying patterns – all the things that influence a person’s decision to buy a product or service, visit a website, or sign up for an email newsletter. This involves conducting research and building a customer profile.


Creating a customer profile

A customer profile is a collection of assumptions based on data you have collected. The information you collect will give you an idea of who is interested in your product and what they want when they buy it. It can include details like age, gender, education, income, financial situation, etc.

You will likely have different types of customers who want different things from your product. Additionally, there will be lots of types of people who will be irrelevant for the purposes of your marketing efforts. For example, if your target customer is a university professor, they will obviously not be interested in things that will interest, say, a child.


Segmenting your target market

If you cannot determine with accuracy who is buying your product, you should divide your customer base into different market segments. Segmenting your target market by age, income, gender etc. will help you create better profiles for each of them.

A company will often have multiple customer profiles. For instance, if you’re a realtor you could create different customer profiles for first-time buyers, seniors looking to downsize, and other major groups of homebuyers.

Your customer profile will also depend on your business concept. If you offer something unique or different, your customer segment will vary with that. If your marketing message is focused on selling baby-safe cleaning products, then it is likely that your customers consist of families with young children rather than businesses, although you may find that child-centered businesses such as crèches or play centres are a good customer for you.


Planning your marketing strategy using your customer profile

Once you have identified your customers and built a customer profile, you will then be able to decide the rest of your marketing strategy.

If your customer profile is for families with children, then you will want to produce content and marketing messages that appeal to them. For example, you could focus on children’s health by producing an article about keeping the home clean during flu season to keep the family healthy. Or you may send out emails to your target customers offering to clean their homes after their child’s birthday party.

Success isn’t guaranteed by using a customer profile, but it is more likely since it is based on real customer data.


Finding data for your customer profile

There are many information sources available to you that can help you draw up a customer profile.

One excellent source is your previous customers. You can analyze who has bought your products in the past, what they wanted, what they were like, how much they were happy to pay.

Also, you should keep track of people inquiring about your product. This may be done by monitoring your website traffic using Google Analytics or a similar analytics tool, which collects information on the type of people who visit and read your website. You could also consider carrying out a survey via email or on your website or in store.


Putting the odds in your favor

Ultimately, building a customer profile is a path to success.

A marketing strategy that is based on a customer profile is much more likely to succeed. Your business will launch products after it has determined who its customers are and what they will look for in the product. You will be much more confident in selling your products when you have acquired the customer information beforehand. You can focus your efforts on those who are likely to respond most positively to your marketing message.

Building a customer profile is a no-brainer – it removes much of the guesswork in business and allows you to focus on implementing actions that will work.