You’re a creative wanting to make a living? Learn from your customer community

You’re a creative wanting to make a living? This is possible if you take note of your current and/or prospective customer community. 

Community is defined as “the condition of sharing or having certain attitudes and interests in common” according to the dictionary (or a Google search). Community is synonymous with the words identity and belonging. There is a specific set of characteristics that sets apart one group/community from another.

Being genuinely interested and curious about the attitudes and behaviours of your customers will inform you how to best develop the product/service you have to offer, because it will be ‘in-tune’ with the needs & wants of your customer community. This focus will lead to using your resources productively and economically because you’re not wasting your time and resources on ‘hope’ and uninformed business decisions. Furthermore, there’ll be less of a chance of annoying potential consumers with information on something that they have no interest in.

So, do you know your customer community? We’re not talking general information here, the devil (in this case, the angel) is in the detail. Having a detailed understanding will lead to smoother decision-making related to your product, your communication and almost every business decision you face.

Do you understand, in detail, what sets your customer community apart? Do you understand, in detail, what motivates them to buy?

Will the customer community you have in mind love the (potential) product/service that you have? Will they buy it? If not, then you probably shouldn’t sell it. You can only know if they’ll love and buy it if you have insight into their beliefs and attitudes and/or what the influences are.

True awareness and understanding is easier when you share similarities with the customer community that you hope to serve. Are you inspired by your product? Do you enjoy your product? Are you perhaps creating something that has been a point of frustration for you?

Although identifying with your customer community is great – it’s not enough.  The saying “Love is not enough” is true not only for romantic relationships, but also in business.

It’s really important to consider – can you make money from offering this service and/or product, asking: “Is my customer community large enough to make this business profitable? Are they motivated enough? Are they wealthy enough, i.e. do they actually have the disposable income required to spend on my product/service?”

One step you can do today in detailing your customer community, is to either clarify (if you have one already) and/or create a profile of your customer community by defining the following:

  • What’s the demographic? Male/Female; Age; Location; Employment type; Income level/affluence
  • Attitudes and values: eg thrifty, aspirational, party going, family first, individuality, sustainability, status-conscious
  • Behaviours: eg shopping habits, hobbies, lifestyle
  • Wants and needs: eg convenience, economy, style, independent endorsement
  • Any trends and/or future knowledge on them? E.g. Millenials, Single moms, Unmarried women
  • What’s the size and commercial oppurtunity of this particular customer community? Population, Living Standards Measure (LSM), Cost of living

Feature Image: @normster

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