Who loves ya, baby?
How to really get to know your ideal clients & what inspires them
Here we begin Part 2 of our easy, quick series on how to get the most ROI out of your website by understanding your ideal clients.
Not sure yet who your ideal clients are? Check out Part 1 in full here.
Today, we’re going to show you how to mine the minds of your ideal clients via real conversations with a handful of them, and how to fully understand their perspectives, desires, concerns, and hesitations.
It might seem daunting, overly formal, and like a too-advanced marketing tactic for where you’re at, but these are actually rewarding conversations to have. We’re gonna guide you through having the conversations in a way that everybody is left feeling known and appreciated.
Again, here’s where we are in the 3-part series:
What do I need to know about them? - 👇 this post!
How to set up interviews with ideal clients
What questions to ask ideal clients
What to avoid doing during an interview (muy importante!)
How can I use this information? - (🔮 future post!)
So, what’s the point of this?…
The gold standard for consciously creating how you show up in the world is to have a website that not only authentically represents who you are and what you’re about, but when the moment your ideal client enters that digital world of yours… they feel at home, welcome, heard, and they want more.
That’s because you’ve carefully crafted your digital presence by speaking their language while addressing the things that are important to them that intersect with the things that are important to you.
The questions below (& how you listen to the answers!) are a direct line to the heart of what’s important to your ideal clients.
Next week? We’ll look at using the information you’ve gathered here to build out an emotionally resonant digital experience for visitors.
For now, let’s keep going.
But first, an important perspective
Before we dive into logistics or even the questions to ask, I’d like to frame this conversation for you with a little Zen Buddhism and the concept of the beginner’s mind. ✨
According to Everyday Sociology:
A beginner’s mind is an open mind, an unbiased mind, a welcoming mind, and a curious mind. But it’s not just a cognitive perspective or a mind set; it’s an experiential perspective, a way of being in the world.
The most important part of this exercise will be the perspective you bring to it. You, the interviewer and listener, must have an open mind for this exercise to produce its full value.
Why? If you go into this exercise “knowing” what’s going to happen, that’s exactly what you’ll be pre-disposed to see. That’s a closed mind, with expectations.
When bringing a Beginner’s Mind, you leave behind what you think people will say and listen to what they do say. You’re curious, and yet “empty”—bringing no judgement, or as little as possible.
Tips for cultivating a Beginner’s Mind in Ideal Client Interviews:
Be curious: Ask things like, “Why did you say that?” or “Say more.” Be deeply curious about why someone would say what they said.
Pause: Let someone fully consider what they want to say before answering. Be ok with a little bit of silence. Ask, “Is there anything else?”
Watch your “sees” and Qs: If you think you already clearly see the answer to a question, ask it anyway just to see what they say. We’re often surprised by answers and find some of the best gold this way!
Be neutral: Don’t react to what people choose to share with you. You want to be natural and normal, but keep the focus on what they’re saying—and not how this reminds you of something that happened to you.
How to Interview Your Ideal Clients
Connect first: Give ideal clients a call to set up a 30-min appointment with them for their interview. You can also email them but I recommend making more direct contact initially, just because the concept can be difficult to grasp at first. If you want to give a discount or bonus for participating, that’s a great idea! But also don’t be surprised if your favorite clients bend over backwards to help you grow your business. They love you, after all!
Use this script: “Hi! I’m working on growing my business and upgrading my presence online. When I think about the types of clients I’ve loved the most and the ones I would want to clone—you’re at the top of my list! (Awwww 🌈💓) I have a few questions I want to ask you about your work with me. While some of this could be used in a testimonial, that’s not the main purpose of the interview. I really just want to have an honest conversation with you about your experience of working with me. Are you available for an easy 30 minute conversation?”
Use a phone, video conference, or meet in person: We love zoom.us!
*this is an affiliate link, but we only share information on products and services we love.
Transcribe everything: Either record your conversation with ideal clients (with permission) or type exactly what they say, word for word. Try your best not to filter, summarize, or alter anything they say. If you use zoom’s recording feature, you can easily pay to get it transcribed at Rev.com
Get an outsider: Consider getting someone else (an outsider, a new employee, or an intern) to do the interviews for you. This can give interviewees more freedom to respond totally authentically without worrying about your feelings. And we find the answers are richer when someone is sharing their experience with someone who wasn’t part of it. [We feel compelled to remind you at this juncture that this is one of the benefits of going through Moxie’s Quantum Leap process!]
“Is there anything else?”: Always end the conversation with “Is there anything else you’d like to add or want me to know?” then pause and say nothing. People will often even say, “no” ...and then in the next breath, share some of the juiciest info.
Finally, questions to ask your ideal clients:
When we interview ideal clients for Moxie clients who’ve invested in our Quantum Leap package, we are guided by a list like this. Thanks to that Beginner’s Mind phenomenon, however, you’ll find other questions will come up based on what you’re hearing from interviewees. Each conversation is usually very different!
A call usually starts like this:
Hi [NAME], I’m part of Moxie Creative and Consulting and when I asked [OUR CLIENT] which couple of clients they would want to clone if they could, they gave me your name. (Congratulations!) Part of our process in creating our clients’ presence in the world is to interview their ideal clients—and that’s you. By understanding you, where you’re coming from, what you’re facing, and what you want, we’ll be able to write copy and build a site in a way that attracts people just like you.
Your entire job on this call is just to answer easy questions honestly—no need to filter or get it right. I’m going to do the heavy lifting of listening and sorting out the things I need. If we do end up wanting to use a piece of this for a testimonial, we will come back to you to get permission—so don’t worry about that. Right now, just be you. Do you have any questions before we begin?
Here are the questions to use, a la carte:
What do you do? Age, location, education? - This helps you track demographic trends
How did you and Business Owner meet? How did you find him/her? - This will tell you about referrals or search terms or paths to you
What do you use Business Owner for? What work have you done together? - Even if you know the answer, it’s best to ask to get it in their own words
What was life like for you before using his/her services? - Here, we’re trying to get a “fly on the wall” picture of what clients were dealing with and experiencing prior to working with you
What were your frustrations or challenges? What would you say to yourself? What would you struggle with?
What did you notice after participating with Business Owner?
What have other people noticed about your participation or use of his/her services? - Because sometimes others notice things more clearly than we do. (Also, your clients will value even more the outcomes that are noticed by others.)
Who would you say Business Owner is? - Again, just to get it in their own words
What hesitations or considerations did you have prior to working with him/her?
What do you think someone needs intrinsically before working with Business Owner? - Especially for growth-driven services like coaching and consulting, we find that someone who has ‘been there’ knows what it takes to succeed in working with you. That’s super useful to know and will definitely play a role in well-crafted copy.
What is Business Owner great at?
What can you not count on him/her for? - In some cases, what you’re going to get from this is a growth edge for your business, but in other cases it simply gets a client’s eye view of what’s within the scope of work with you…and what’s not. This can also provide insight into what clients are aware of about you.
Is there anything else you’d like to add? - Remember to pause here! Even if someone says, “no” … give them a few seconds to see if something comes up.
May I use portions of this interview for testimonials? And do I have permission to use your name? - We already addressed this earlier in your intro, but if it seems appropriate, you can bring it up here.
Phew. 😅 That was a lot of information.
We know this was a lot to take in.
But talk about ROI…the time you spend setting up and then having these conversations will be paid for many times over when you take what you learn and put it to work for you.
And if you know what you’re doing, the data will inform pretty much, oh, everything about how you show up in the world, including, of course, your website. (And after Part 3 of this series, you will know what you’re doing!)
Would you like your very own copy of this guide to this important aspect of Moxie’s Quantum Leap package?
Be our guest…you can download and print right here.
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