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The 5 Types of Customers and How to Reach Them

Have you ever felt like you’re doing everything you can to let people know about your products, but still not enough people are buying from you?

Or perhaps you have lots of buyers but your prices aren’t where they need to be, you’re not making a profit yet, and you’re afraid to raise your prices?

This is a problem I see frequently with farmers I work with.  They, and you have amazing products that are helping transform people’s lives and yet not enough people know about it because you’re not talking about it in a way that makes people notice.

If you find your messages or ads not connecting with enough buyers, it could be that you’re presenting the same message to everyone, whether it’s how your website is written, or your Facebook posts, or your email newsletter.

But there are five stages in the customer buying journey, and the bulk of farmers are using marketing messages that reach people in only 1-2 of those stages.

The other 3 -4 stages represent about 95% of potential customers so you’re really missing a goldmine of opportunity!!

How can you be sure to reach all 5 types of customers and increase your sales and profits?  Start by watching the video below where I explain the types of customers and how to market to them differently.

The 5 Types of Customers

Each type needs to receive a variation of your marketing message.

  1. Most Aware
  2. Product-Aware
  3. Solution-Aware
  4. Problem-Aware
  5. Unaware

Click below to watch the video, then read the rest of the post for ideas on how to reach these customers that will make your farm profitable!

Most Aware

The smallest group of customers available to you are “most aware” customers who know and love you.  They pay your price without complaint and support your farm as you grow and evolve.

All you need to do to market to them is put up a picture of your chickens on FB, a bouquet of flowers on Instagram, or offer a recipe booklet and they’ll be right over to purchase and may even bring a friend.

But this group is not large enough to sustain you with a profit long-term.  So you scramble to create more and more new products to sell to this “low-hanging fruit” until you’re exhausted, stretched, and still losing money.

Product-Aware

Customers in this category might know they need to be eating healthier food, but they don’t know about you yet.  However, they go to farmer’s markets and shop at Whole Foods.

Or, for you non-food farmers, perhaps they always pick up a bouquet of flowers in the store, or they go to yoga class once a week, not knowing you could help them de-stress.

It’s really easy to reach the above two customer categories with photos of your product on Instagram or Facebook.  Or you can send out an email with a recipe on your blog titled “3 Ways to Cook Grass-Fed Beef” and these people will look you up to buy!  However, like I said earlier, it’s not a large enough group to sustain you.

It’s not so easy to reach the next 3 levels of shoppers but to remain in business, that must be your goal.

Solution-Aware

These customers know the result they want in their life, and they know that solutions exist, but they’re not aware that your specific solution is out there.

This was me 15 years ago – my kids had eczema and I was trying every remedy known to man – but I had not yet heard of raw milk!  But I was open to hearing a different solution, so when it landed on my radar I was ready!

These customers need to know that YOUR solution is the best for them.  And since they don’t know your solution is out there, pictures of grass-fed beef, layouts of beautifully colored veggies, or photos of milk cows will not connect with them at all – because they don’t even know it can help!

Some ideas on how to reach these customers might be customer testimonials or stories of other customers having success with your products.

Back to my personal example of raw milk and eczema.  When I write a blog post about my kids drinking raw milk and it healed their eczema, people share that around and other mothers of children read it and realize raw milk will help!  They’d never considered that until they heard my story.  But no amount of photos of cute cows or milk and cookies or recipes would have interested them or gotten them to purchase because that wasn’t yet on their radar.

Problem-Aware

These customers know they have a problem but are not aware of any solutions yet.

For instance, many people have acid reflux and just live with it.  The medication doesn’t help, so they think nothing will.

How to reach these people who are not seeking help?  Well, since they don’t know there are solutions, a photo of your products or a recipe won’t attract them at all.

But if you had a blog post titled, “suffering from acid reflux? This might help.” will get their attention. Since these people aren’t looking for YOU online, or the products you sell, you have to have some content with their problems listed in it – for instance, a blog post explaining how visiting the farm for flowers is a “stress-reliever.”

So they google “stress relief” or “acid reflux” and your farm comes up!! Something they’d never heard of, but now you have the chance to move them to a higher level of customer awareness until eventually, they buy from you.

Unaware

Unaware customers don’t know they have a problem that needs solving, that your product can solve.  They have no clue.  They are the hardest to attract, however, if you want to be around for the long-haul you need to have some content in your marketing materials that they can relate to.

They might have a discomfort in life or an unfulfilled dream.  They feel disappointed and don’t know if they need a new house, a new marriage, a new job, or what.  They just know they don’t feel completely satisfied in life.  And they aren’t really looking for any solutions, they’re just kind of stuck.

Maybe they’re talking with a co-worker and explaining how “blah” they feel.  And the co-worker mentions they work out at a Crossfit Box and feel great since they started.

So this unaware customer googles Crossfit and wonders if they should try it.  It leads them to an article on the Paleo diet.  They read about grass-fed beef.  They wonder if trying some grass-fed beef might help them feel better in life?  Then, they stumble on your website with an article on grass fed beef and how many people feel better after transforming their diets!

See how that unaware customers moved through all the customer stages?  That could be in one sitting at their desk and immediately they’re off to your farm to buy.  Or it could be a slow process, where they are growing and evolving and learning over many months and then land on your farm.

Whew!  I know that’s a lot!  And you’re not going to implement this overnight.  But design a plan to work through the different levels and create marketing materials that connect with all of them.  Over time, you’ll see your customer base growing steadily, almost exponentially as people from each of the 5 stages begin to flock to your farm!

Content You Can Create to Reach Each of the Stages:

Most Aware and Product Aware: photos of products, events on your farm, how-to posts, and recipes.

Solution-Aware: case studies, customer testimonials.

Problem-Aware: Show them you feel their pain – blog posts on their struggle (anxiety, unfulfilled dreams or goals, physical ailments) and then once you’ve been compassionate, offer an example of how your product has been the solution for others feeling the same way.

Unaware:  This is the bulk of the marketplace.  You don’t try to sell to them at all.  You might just have a blog post about someone who felt dissatisfaction with her life but did not know why.  Or felt anxious and stressed, but not sure why.  You tell the story of a customer who was going through a hard time and eventually found her way to your farm, started buying from you, and now you have a wonderful relationship and she feels fulfilled again. These people will connect with you on some level, join your email list where you can build relationships with them over time so they eventually become a customer.

Now it’s your turn – tell me in the comments below what kind of marketing material you can create – whether it’s on your blog or Facebook or Instagram or an ad – and what you will do to reach at least one more of the customer types?  When you comment, you inspire others to dream big, too!

 

{ 10 comments… add one }
  • Pete Widin October 4, 2017, 7:08 am

    This is awesome, Charlotte!! Whata breath of fresh air for those of us stuck in a rut, trying to figure out how to get the attention of people who don’t know about us yet!

    • Charlotte October 4, 2017, 1:13 pm

      Thanks, Pete – great to hear from you!!! Are you moved? Where did you end up – Florida? Hope all is well!

    • Charlotte October 31, 2017, 8:16 am

      Hi Pete! Great to hear from you! I appreciate the note. Are you guys in Florida now??

  • Peter Bartlett October 5, 2017, 2:12 pm

    One of your most helpful insights yet! Thanks for expanding on the concept and sharing the video!

    • Charlotte October 31, 2017, 8:15 am

      Thank you, Peter! I appreciate your saying so.

  • Julia Bell October 7, 2017, 3:35 pm

    Thank you Charlotte! You are brilliant!

    • Charlotte October 31, 2017, 8:15 am

      Thank you for saying so, Julia!! I learned it from others, just want to share with you!! It’s such great knowledge to share.

      xo
      Charlotte

  • Penny February 5, 2018, 3:51 pm

    This talk gave me an “Aha!” moment. Makes perfect sense. Thanks!

  • April Michelle Beardsley October 8, 2018, 5:05 pm

    Thank you. I will practice writing to all of them from now on. Thank you

  • Nicole Callen February 24, 2019, 9:24 pm

    Thank you, wonderful article!

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