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Pinpoint your customer archetype

To learn more about your customer, we first need to identify who the ideal customer for your business might be. The purpose of this exercise is to help you narrow in on who you should be targeting as a client. This process is often called customer discovery.

This is the beginning of important customer discovery work that will build the foundation of your business. Discovering your ideal customer in this playbook will involve four exercises.

Identify your customer archetype

An archetype is a kind of blueprint—a typical example of something. For the purpose of this exercise, you will be envisioning a typical example of your ideal customer, the kind of person who might buy your services.

1. In the next section below, you will create 2 or 3 different customer archetypes. This will help you get specific about each ‘type’ of potential customer. You will give each archetype a name, industry, type of business, stage, focus, target team, role within a company, and even some quotes you might hear this potential client share. For example, your archetype might work in the tech industry, in the early stage of starting a hospitality app. You can see some examples below.

Source: xtensio.com

‍‍2. You will think as if you were one of your archetype customers looking for help with a project. For example: What kinds of questions would the customer ask in order to decide if you were the right person for the project? How would you answer and what aspects of your business that set you apart would you point to? We’ll dive into how to answer these questions next.

3. Use the next section in conjunction with your workbook to get your creative juices flowing.

Follow this process to identify your archetype

Write out who you think your customer might be

To start, create a list in your workbook to brainstorm the following:

  • Clients you’ve worked with in the past

  • Clients you would like to work with in the future

  • Services these kinds of clients desire that you can offer‍

From this list, use your workbook to come up with 1-3 types of customers that you would want to work with and why.‍

Get into the mindset of the point of contact there

It is one thing to identify the company you would like to work with, and now you need to figure out who within that company you would be connecting with.

Sometimes it can be the founder of a startup, other times it may be a content marketer within a larger company. For any of these points of contact, get specific about what is going on in their head. 

It is important to figure out the answer to these questions in order to really identify who they are, how they think, what matters to them, and what their unique frustrations are that your niche can help solve. Utilize the chart in your workbook to create and organize information for each of your archetypes.‍

The archetypes will serve as your guide for who to reach out to for interviews, a step you will take further in the playbook, as well as how to find people who map to each archetype. We’ll delve into how to find people who fit your customer archetypes later in the playbook. 

As you look back over your workbook notes from this lesson, see if you can come up with a shorthand name for each archetype (i.e. “Frustrated Student”). As you’re capturing notes from your interviews later, be sure to capture which of your Archetypes your interviewees fit (roughly) into.

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