Finding and keeping loyal customers will be the backbone of your business. We first started out by sharing our products with friends and family. When everyone kept telling us how amazing our products were, we thought "hey, we might have something here." We then started exploring different local craft and artisanal food shows where we could have people taste our products and we could tell them our story. These shows allowed us to get direct feedback from consumers and we slowly started figuring out who our ideal customers were and why they were interested in buying our products.
This information allowed us to refine our packaging to meet the needs of those customers and then slowly make the move to selling our products in retail stores. The first step in discovering who your ideal customer is is understanding why a customer might be interested in buying your product. When we were first learning about this, we discovered a great video from Harvard Business School professor, Clayton Christensen. He describes how your product performs a job for your ideal customer and your goal is to understand what that job is.
Today we want to share with you a simple exercise you can do to understand who the ideal customer for your business might be. The way we recommend you do this is by creating a buyer's persona. A buyer's persona as a fictional, generalized character that builds a picture of your ideal customer. Once you know who that customer is, then you can figure out how many of those potential customers actually exist in the world, which will help you define the size of your potential market. Your buyer's persona will include age, location, income, and also psychographic information like interest, reasons for buying and concerns.
Completing your buyer's persona is a big step, as you now have your ideal customer in mind. And remember, this persona will continue to evolve as you sell your products and discover more details about the customers who purchase it the most. So it doesn't need to be perfect, just get something down on paper to start.