“There’s rooms in people’s minds
so private, no one enters but them.
Those rooms are massively
influential on their behavior.”
– Robert Gibson (A-list copywriter)
Last year, I had to write a sales funnel for a career course. The pages were blank because everything I was writing sucked. It was fluffy, vague, and boring.
Ever experience that? 😉
The good news is, there’s an easy fix.
I’ve learned that when that happens, it means I need to re-connect with my audience. To get clear on who I’m talking to, their deep pain, frustrations, thoughts, feelings, and experiences they’ve had — both in relation to what I’m selling and on a day-to-day level.
When you understand all that, your copy becomes way easier to write and resonates much more deeply.
With that understanding, your empathy and genuine desire to help takes over. You’re no longer writing from a place of “Ugh, I need to write this” or “How do I get them to buy my stuff?” Instead, your copy comes from a deeper place of genuine care. You’re writing with a heartfelt desire to end their pain and give them a better life.
And your readers will feel that difference.
So how’d I exactly did solve this problem? I stepped away from the page and poured through survey responses from the product I was selling. This refreshed my memory on the struggles, pain, hopes, dreams, and fears of our audience. After 10 minutes of scanning, copy started pouring out of me. And it didn’t suck 🙂
Now pouring through surveys is time-consuming. So a faster way to tap into that empathay and write impactful copy from the start is to create customer avatars. A quick glance at these before you write will help powerful copy flow from your fingers much easier.
Now there are plenty of good processes for creating customer avatars. I’ve created my own, after being influenced over the years by Andre Chaperone, Ryan Levesque, Abbey Woodcock , John Carlton, Kevin Rogers and probably a bunch of other smart people.
Below are the questions I use to create my customer avatars. I recommend you go through and answer them yourself. They’ll give you a deeper understanding of who you are talking to and what matters to them.
After answering those questions, you can create an avatar. This is a little bio of who your customer is. I’ve included one I created and used on a successful launch as an example that you can reference when creating your own.
15 questions for creating your customer avatar
1. General demographic information (age, occupation, income, gender, location)
2. How’d they find out about you?
3. When it comes to [result they want you can help with], what is the single biggest challenge they face?
4. How long have they had that problem? How does it make them feel?
5. What are your customers 3 biggest fears related to this topic or area of their life?
6. What are their 3 biggest frustrations in this area?
7. Is there a single burning pain, thought, or desire that consumes them when they’re alone? What is it?
8. What’s the dream or end result your customer wants that brought them to you in the first place? If they could rub a magic lamp and have one wish come true in this area what would it be?
9. How would they feel if they achieved that? Why is it important to them?
10. What have they tried in the past to achieve that dream? How’d it work out?
11. What are the top 3 barriers keeping them from achieving that dream/end result right now?
12. What do they think the solution is? What do they actually need? (These may or may not be the same thing)
13. What makes your product different/better than the other resources out there promising to help them in this area?
14. What other blogs/books/podcasts/online communities does your audience enjoy?
15. What would be an example of an embarrassing, frustrating, or upsetting moment they experienced they haven’t told anyone about? (Example: stealing money from a friend to bankroll a game]. Feel free to give multiple examples if more come to you.
Turning the questions into an avatar
Once you have the answers, I find it helpful to compile them to tell a story about who this person is. Adding a picture and writing up a mini-bio helps it feel more real.
Note that you don’t have to use all the information from the questions above. It’s still helpful to answer those questions though because some of the things you come up with will stick in the back of your mind. Plus, you can always reference those answers along with the bio you create for a fuller perspective of your audience.
This particular avatar I created when I was selling a course on building an online business (though I did modify a few things from the original for my own reasons :))
Customer Avatar example
(Apparently, our avatar is a fan of dramatic poses)
Jeremy, 38, runs a small consulting company in England
Jeremy has two young kids and earns $90k/year at his software consulting business. He wants security for his family as he knows that if one of his 3 clients left him (though that isn’t likely) he’d have trouble paying bills.
He already works 60+ hours/week and would love to spend more time with his family maybe take a weekend away with his wife. He wants to expand from one-on-one consulting and find a way to help more people.
He dabbled in online biz a few years ago, even bought a $1,500 course from a big name in the industry. He thought the material was good but he never did much with it. He’s wary of internet marketing “gurus” but wants to take another crack at online biz. He’s hesitant because he doesn’t want to ruin his reputation with some “scammy-looking” website. He’s also worried online business won’t work for him due to his unique accent. Most of all, he doesn’t want to waste on a business that doesn’t go anywhere. He wants structure and guidance so he can do it right the first time.
He learned about us through the Entrepreneur on Fire podcast. He liked our views on life and business (particularly the part how about business is about creating win-win-win situations for customers, owners, and employees). Jeremy’s been reading our material off and on for a few years. His wife bought our meditation course and now mediates 15 minutes almost every morning. Though they both trust us, Jeremy doesn’t think his wife would approve spending thousands of dollars on another course when he has a perfectly good one he hasn’t applied yet.
Alright, let’s get you an avatar!
Go through and answer the questions above. Then create a brief bio of your customer avatar. Feel free to send me an email at [email protected] with your finished product. Though I can’t promise to give feedback on every single one I get, I do read them all.