Why Basing Your Brand on Your Ideal Client Can Be Deadly to Your BusinessApr 08, 2022
I cannot even count the number of times I’ve heard gurus, online experts, course creators, even colleagues and friends say the first and most important thing you need to do when you start your personal, service-based business is to figure out your ideal client, who they are, and what they desire.
Now, I’m not denying that your ideal client is an important part of your business, and that you absolutely need to know everything you can about them. However, it’s not the FIRST thing you should be basing your brand and business off of – in fact, doing so can be deadly to your business in the long run, and to your happiness and fulfillment as an entrepreneur.
Your brand is the promise of an experience that shows up wherever you go. This experience is delivered through everything your business does, and becomes how the world sees and gets to know you.
Essentially, as a service-based coach or healer, your ideal clients’ experience with your brand is their impression of YOU – your personality, how they feel when they’re around you, what you do and how you do it, what it’s like to work with you, what you sound like and even how you dress.
The Problem with Basing Your Brand on Your Ideal Client
You may have noticed all of those things listed above that make up your brand experience are about YOU. Wherever you are in your business and your branding, whether you’re just starting out or trying to rebrand, the first and most important thing you need to do is figure out who YOU are so you can attract the people who love, appreciate, and value you for YOU!
If instead, you base your entire brand on your ideal client, you may end up trying to morph yourself into someone you’re not in order to fit the role you think your ideal client wants.
For example, maybe you think your ideal client will be more drawn to work with you if you're funny ... so you try to be funny, even though that's not your natural way of being ... and it comes across looking contrived (and repelling potential clients who can see right through it). This was me in my first couple years of business.
Not only that, constantly trying to act like someone else in your business is NOT sustainable! If you’re anything like me, you want clients to come to you and love you for who you really are – not who you’re pretending to be.
Basing your brand on your ideal client could also lead you to compromise the value you deliver to fit what your clients are saying they want.
For example, if you know that your clients need a comprehensive, in-depth program to get them the results they say they want, but you keep attracting clients who complain about the price and want a quick fix – you may end up compromising on the depth of value you offer, and trying to fit your service into a cheaper, shorter program, rather than offering what you believe in (and actually know they need, based on your many years of experience).
While it's important to make sure that your ideal client actually wants and needs your services – compromising on your value and what you know your clients need to get results, isn’t a sustainable business practice.
Instead, it may be time to create a new ideal client profile (we have a course inside the Impact Tribe that walks you through this), and then update your messaging on your website to speak to the new person you want to attract.
How to Figure Out Who You Are as the Face of Your Personal Brand
A good place to start when it comes to branding your service-based business is with a personality assessment! Even though you may feel like you have a good grip on your personality, you likely haven’t considered it through a branding lens. Most of us are incredibly multi-faceted and have countless things we believe in and parts of our personalities at play – and it can be hard to reign it in and communicate it through a cohesive brand.
I've created 2 brand personality assessments that my Impact Tribe members use when beginning their branding (or re-branding) journey to help them clarify who they are as the face of their brands.
This free tool will help you hone in one your brand personality through the lens of the 12 Jungian archetypes. Archetypes, although we may not realize it, are at the core of how we view the world and understand the people around us. Using archetypes to guide your branding, will help you build a business that's aligned with your truth and help your potential clients come to know, like and trust you faster because you fit within their framework of understanding the world.
Another helpful tool to get you started with branding or rebranding is the Power Profile - a brand personality assessment and course that I created based on color psychology. This is a great tool to use when you want to ensure that the colors you choose for your logo, website and marketing materials are an authentic reflection of you - because ... did you know that each color has a different personality and even energy behind it? Therefore, it's important that the colors you choose for your branding are sending the right message!
Both of the above tools are focused on YOU as the face of your brand, first. Once you have this information, you’ll need to compile it into a brand so you can show up with confidence, clarity and consistency when you communicate your brand and the value you bring to your clients.
You can get access to both tools inside the Impact Tribe, along with my signature "Boom Your Brand" course and access to my private coaching calendar if you need 1:1 support.
When to Consider Your Ideal Client
Like I said at the start, it's absolutely is important to know who your ideal client is and to make sure your messaging speaks to them.
However, first and foremost your brand needs to be a reflection of YOU.
So, when should you take your ideal client into consideration?
After you've clarified who you are as the face of your brand. That way, you won't compromise on your truth or values trying to morph yourself into what you think other people want. Instead, you'll build a brand that attracts the best clients EVER because they'll value you for YOU.
If you’re just starting to build your personal brand, going through the process of rebranding, or are ready to create an aligned service-based business, the Impact Tribe will guide you every step of the way! This monthly membership gives you everything you need, in the right order, so you can build a successful service-based business and stay true to yourself throughout the process.