In the last blog in our ‘Marketing Your Interim Career’ series, we discussed the importance of defining your product, asking what problems you solve for your potential customer to help you shape your product is essential but just who is that potential customer? It’s a question you need to answer to be effective in your interim career and with your marketing efforts, as whilst you can be 100% sure about what you’re offering, if you don’t know who you’re offering it to, then it can be difficult to win business.
Create a buyer persona
Consider all the different types of customer who will need help with the problem your skills solve. Then you’ll be able to identify similar characteristics of those customers, are they in a certain location or sector, are they a certain size of business or are they different kinds of businesses which go through a particular type of change or transformation. Who are the people in these businesses who are at the pain point? what’s the job title of the person that will need your skills and expertise to solve their problem. Once you identify commonalities like these you will have drawn up an accurate picture of your target customer.
Initially your buyer persona may be quite broad, but in order to identify your target market and to concentrate your marketing efforts, you’ll need to further segment that audience, perhaps you want to focus on one geographical area or one specific type of business, the key here is where your specialist set of skills will sit best, where you can demonstrate competence and a proven track record is where you will realistically get the most return, this also works from a reputational point of view rather than being all things to all people, operating in a distinct space and doing it really well will help set you apart from your competitors.
You’re not the only one with ‘skin in the game’ and failing to be aware of your competitors is a huge mistake. Whilst you’re identifying your target market you need to continually be asking ‘ why I am the best person to solve this problem’ Take time to look at who else is in the market place and if you’re not clear on why your target market would choose you over a competitor then it’s time to reconsider your proposition and your target market. You will always have competition, so the key here is ensuring you always have a compelling case for why you provide the best solution.
What do you want?
Whilst identifying a target market is a useful exercise from a marketing point of view, it is also a very strategic approach and whilst you are very likely to be successful in an area where you know your stuff from a practical point of view, if your heart isn’t in it then you will never be truly getting the most from your interim career and neither will your clients, it’s really important throughout the marketing process that you ask this question about what you want and who are you are, as it’s one will help define your brand as you move forward and enable you to have a clearer focus on who your target really is.
Look out for the next blog in our ‘Marketing Your Interim Career series focusing on ‘personal brand’