Why you need to stop focusing on your ideal prospect, blog article written by Ted Prodromou

I've been playing this marketing game for over 20 years. 

Marketing 101 teaches you how to create your ideal client persona or ideal prospect. 

I was watching a video from Jon Benson, and he talked about focusing on your ideal buyer. 

It hit me like a ton of bricks. 

Wouldn't it be better to focus on your ideal buyer instead of your ideal prospect? 

An ideal buyer is further along in the buying cycle. 

They are problem and solution aware. 

They know they have a problem, and they know there is a solution. 

You may or may not know where your ideal prospect is in the buying cycle. 

Reminds me of the old marketing qualified leads vs. the sales qualified lead debate when I worked in a corporate marketing department. 

Sales always said the leads were not sales-qualified leads because they weren't ready to buy right now. 

The sales cycle for our software was 12-18 months with many people involved in the purchase decision. 

I used to run three types of ads to match where they were in the buying cycle. 

Instead of offering one lead magnet, we had specific lead magnets that matched where they were in the buying cycle. 

Prospect #1: "I need a new website" 

The prospect knew they needed a new website, but they didn't know what platform would be best for their enterprise website. 

These prospects were problem aware. 

They knew they had a problem, but they didn't know which solution was best. 

I ran ads like "5 things to consider when choosing a website platform" and offered a PDF outlining the pros and cons of different website platforms like HTML, LAMP, and CMS. 

Of course, the PDF favored a CMS platform as the best choice because we sold a CMS. 

Prospect #2: "I know I need a CMS platform. Which CMS is best?" 

These prospects were problem aware and solution aware. They knew there was a solution, but they didn't know which solution was for them. 

The ads targeting this group were "Choosing the best CMS" and we offered a report called Choosing the Best CMS from a third-party CMS publication. 

Our platform was .NET-based so I also ran ads related to the best .NET CMS platforms offering the same report. 

It was a "pay to play" report, where we paid the vendor to rank us as one of the best CMS platforms. 

We tried to purchase the #1 spot but had to settle for #2 in the report. 

Prospect #3: The prospect knew they wanted a .NET CMS and they had to sell the executives who would sign off on the purchase.

These prospects were problem aware and solution aware.

They knew our solution was best and they had to convince the executives to sign off on the purchase.

Rolling out enterprise websites can take years and millions of dollars, so the execs needed definitive proof it was the best solution. 

For the executives, we ran ads offering the Gartner Magic Quadrant Best CMS report. 

Gartner is a reputable firm that executives trust. 

We were ranked highly in the Gartner report (another "pay to play" deal.) 

At this point, all of the decision-makers had the information they needed to purchase our software. 

I'm wondering... 

Do you offer lead magnets that match where your Ideal Buyer is in the buying cycle?

- Ted

P.S. I'm thinking of putting together a small group to create a system like this for your business. 

It would be a hands-on class where we build the 3-step system live on our calls. 

We start with market research to see what your prospects need help with today, then create lead magnets to match where they are in the buying cycle. 

Comment below and let me know if you are interested. 

About the author 

Ted Prodromou

Would you like me to help you?

I'm the #1 best-selling author of Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn for Business and Ultimate Guide to Twitter for Business. People call me America's Leading LinkedIn Coach.

I'm the founder of Search Marketing Simplified, LLC, a full service online marketing agency. The SMS team designs and implements advanced LinkedIn and social media lead-generation strategies for small to medium-sized businesses. SMS will set up and manage your marketing funnels using organic, social and paid traffic.

Did you know I've been working with the internet since 1991, long before Al Gore invented it?

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