Your best future customers are not looking for general solutions. They have specific pain points. Some of which might be your expertise. But if your message is so general as not to leave anybody out, then it cannot be specific enough to attract your best customers.
I can design stuff for any kind of business. Everyone is a good prospect for me. In fact, why stop at branding and marketing services for SMB owners and CEOs? I can offer all kinds of design services for any size client, really.
From now on, everyone is my target audience. I will speak as blandly as possible so it applies to everyone in any situation. I will water down my brand message so that no one is alienated by it. And I will offer every possible generic solution under the sun so that everyone everywhere will be a prospective client.
Sounds ridiculous, right? So why does everybody do it?
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When you’re trying to grow your business, and attract new customers, common sense says to try to make your business attractive to as many people as possible, right?
It’s common sense!
It’s a numbers game, after all. The more people in your potential pool of prospects, the higher the likelihood of getting chosen.
Well, common sense is wrong.
In order to do that, you really need to dilute your message. You start speaking more generally, so it applies to a wider audience.
What’s wrong with that?
First, your marketing voice becomes so generic, you have no unique qualities.
Nothing to get anybody excited about you.
It speaks to no one, and so no one cares.
People do not have general problems. Your best future customers are not looking for general solutions.
They have specific pain points. Some of which might be your expertise.
But if your message is so general as not to leave anybody out, then it cannot be specific enough to attract your best customers.
Second, and equally unappealing, you will very likely attract all the wrong customers.
Prospects with a specific business pain are typically willing to pay top dollar for an expert solution.
But if your message is diluted so as not to be specific, those people will not consider you.
Instead, you will attract customers whose pain is not that important to them, or who are looking for bargain solutions, or who are looking for solutions that only marginally fit with what you really want to be doing with your business.
As CEO, you have a vision for where you want your business to go.
What you want to be doing, and for whom.
So your marketing message needs to speak directly to those people - and no one else - about exactly those issues.
Squeeze the message into as tight a niche as possible, so that your business caters to fewer and fewer people.
Those who are left are your best qualified prospects, looking for your best work.