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Targeting the right early customers.

Knowing who your target audience is and then finding out a little more about them than their job title and email address or phone number. Why is this so important?

A target customer shown as a man in a tie standing on a red target held in a persons hand

We have written a blog before on what are buying persona's and why they are important but in this blog we wanted to delve a little deeper into why you need to think of your customers like this to help you identify the right early customers. This identification will help with early sales, initial product feedback and advocates for your product as you move to sell to the majority.

Let's assume for this exercise that you have developed a new healthcare app to help patients follow their physiotherapy after surgery. It's novel and there isn't anything else like it on the market currently. Who is your customer and how well do you know them?

Obviously, your customers are physiotherapists right so you don't need to know anything more than a list of physios to target. Wrong.........

Your customer is a physiotherapist and potentially depending on what your go-to-market strategy is, could be the patients themselves. Either way, your initial target will not just be all physiotherapists. You need to pick the right targets as innovators for early adoption and these physiotherapists should also be key opinion leaders or physio's your future customers will look up to and listen to their opinion.

The customer adoption graph showing the groups customers fall into being drawn by a man

Great I hear you ask where do I find this type of physiotherapist?

Start by looking at societies your target might belong to, and who is on the committee for these. Check out publications and use key words relating to your product. Who has published recently on these topics? We would suggest using something like Pub Med then you can also see how many papers they have written. Aim for targets who have a good number of publications (100 as a target unless you have a very niche product.)

Then using platforms like LinkedIn check out the individuals you have identified so you can make connections and start building relationships. It's not an easy task but if you want good quality targets who you can work with to give you early feedback and build into advocates for your device you need to ensure you have identified the right targets.

It doesn't mean you can't target them if they aren't on LinkedIn. This is where referring to your buying persona for the individuals will help you. Identify where they go for trusted information and try to either be there, maybe in person, attend conferences or advertise in journals they are likely to read. Use social media and create posts that answer the challenges you identified as part of the Buying Persona work or will resonate with their opinion. You can also use the information you have in your Buying Persona on gender and age to find the right social media channel. Again remember to write posts that show you understand their situation and needs and always have a call to action, "get in touch for more information" or "interested in becoming an evaluation site contact us" or something along these lines.

This Example focussed on Physiotherapists but could be any type of customer remember when creating your Buying Persona's you can't lump all your customers together, so just Physio won't work you need to think of the attributes an early adopter will have then later in your journey the focus will move to the majority and eventually to the laggards. These customers will potentially have different needs, different demographics, and different trusted sources of information so you will need to reflect all these changes in your marketing messages, and media at the appropriate time.

If you would like some assistance in creating your buying persona's and a workshop to identify target customers then please get in touch we would love to hear about your product and how we can help you bring it to market.

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