Focus Everything On Your Ideal Customer

Boy in supermarket reaching for food

What if you were to focus everything you said and did on only one customer? Imagine if you were to look at your client base and use the 80/20 rule (or maybe even the 90/10 rule) and give 100% focus on the best 10-20% of customers? You would need to answer some questions:

Who are you best set up to serve?

Why do they choose you?

What do people buy from you? (Hint: It is not what you sell)

What to your top 10-20% value the most about your product and/or service?

How do you stand out from your competition?

These are questions I have asked and written about numerous times. I remember the first time I felt particularly challenged by this whole concept was late 2000’s. We had been training on key account management and the 80/20 rule - particularly focused on the fact that 20% of your customers give you 80% of your income. One individual so bought into the truth of this that he went and ‘fired’ his bottom 80% of customers and only took on customers that fitted his top 20%. It is the stuff legends are made of. I was a huge mixture of breathtaking admiration and terror. His business boomed. 

A few years later, during similar training, a client lit up with the reality that 20% of his products gave him 80% of his income. I cautioned that sometimes the 80% give us the right to sell the 20% e.g. A hardware store needs to sell nails even though it is a very small contributor to sales. He was unswayed. He crunched his numbers and massively rationalised his product range. The focus gave him a niche that he owned and opened him to previously unimaginable opportunities. At the time I remember being very challenged by this laser focus.

Just seeing and hearing does not make a difference. One has to act. Over time, if you don't act, the impetus to make a change rapidly disappears.  Experiences such as these serve as a great reference point and example - providing the spark often needed for others to follow in their footsteps.The reality is that a stroke of genius just does not go away. The power of its message keeps flashing up in stories of other people doing the same thing.

Every time I use Google I am reminded of their one purpose: Make my search experience easy and effective. I keep coming back, I only use Google. The focus of Uber, Air BnB, Hnry, Xero, and the list goes on. The beauty of this, of course, is that from a place of dominance in an area it is so easy to branch out - Nike is a classic example as they moved from shoes to clothing.

I leave you with a thought for the week. How focused are you? What opportunity are you missing in your desire to try and keep all the people happy all the time? How much better could you do if you focused on doing everything for your ideal client(s)?

Here’s to your success!