A client once canceled their wedding after receiving their engagement photos. The couple wanted LESS candid photos and MORE posed, stiff, both-people-looking-at-the-camera shots. I was crushed and left wondering: what was I doing wrong? I started a deep dive into researching branding foundations and I ran across the term “ideal client avatar” for the first time. Discovering your own ideal client avatar is one of the best lead generation strategies to put to work first in your business!
I took the time to figure out who my ideal client was in my business at a point when I didn’t have any clients that were actually ideal. From this experience I learned some important things about ideal clients:
Based on these values and goals you can more easily find your ideal client knowing you are able to provide them with an experience that serves them well. I decided to look into what the couple valued, what they were looking for in their photos (both the feeling and the look of it), their lifestyle, and what was most important to them about the wedding day. Utilizing this starting point as lead generation strategies taught me a TON about who exactly I wanted to work with.
Knowing what my ideal client wanted helped me realize what I already valued in my work. Knowing this opened up a whole new world of photography for me. You can thrive in what you do best because you know that’s what your client wants!
An ideal client avatar is a term used to define who you want to work with or who is your buyer persona. Another way to phrase this could be your “dream customer” or “best fit clientele.” It’s a fictional representation of your perfect customer.
Creating your ICA takes researching and gathering information. You’ll want to conduct surveys, interviews, and identify the pain points and goals of your ideal clients. I had to do the same thing by gathering market research and testing it to ensure I was catering to the right group of people.
If you don’t have existing data or experience to work with, then we can start from scratch in your lead generation strategies! Write down what you imagine your ideal client could be and then you can adapt this once you get that information through future experience!
Knowing your ICA impacts everything as you incorporate it into every single piece of your business. Once discovered, this might bring in the need for changes to your branding and website through these lead generation strategies:
I truly believe that there is an “ideal fit” for each photographer that pairs well with them. They may not be the perfect fit, but there’s enough connection in what matters most to make it work!