Industries, markets, companies, end users don’t buy anything… You sell to people.

Think about your prospective customers – the people to whom you will be selling. What you’re going to do is create a composite picture of your typical customer. Don’t treat it lightly and give it a quick brush because you “know all about your customers.” Maybe you do… but you really can’t know too much about the people who will make or break your business.

Since no two customers are alike, you’ll need to consider more than one customer. It’s important to have a clear picture of where your customers are coming from and what aspects of your products they deem most important.

First identify different customer types. Consider each separately. This is crucial; i.e., don’t confuse one prospective customer’s characteristics with another.

You’ll find it relatively easy to list the first three or four characteristics or benefits for each customer. But, the next few will take some deeper thinking. Make that extra effort. Usually it’s these less obvious characteristics or reasons to buy that are what really make customers want to buy.

When you’re finished with your customer profile, you’ll then do a similar exercise to determine how each would benefit from your product…

Visualize three or more typical, but different, users of your product. Give each a name. Use your imagination. Form a mental picture of each person. Each should be representative of the type of person who will buy from you. Make sure each customer is different from the others.

The next step is to list each customer’s distinguishing personal characteristics then compare the lists for common characteristics and motives. You can then list how each customer type could use the product and the corresponding benefit… then compare the unifying uses and benefits that your customers have in common.

Finally once you have a composite picture of whom you are talking to and what they are looking for – create your basic sales message. What problem are you solving for those people? What else are you doing for them? Try writing in as short a paragraph as possible, why should someone buy your product? What is your sales message?