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00:00 Okay. So there’s really three big areas that I talk about that you want to look or that you want to invest some time and energy. And number one is that you want to ask existing customers or clients, talk to them, ask them a question. And so you’re going to be asking them questions about what are the biggest problems or frustrations that they’re trying to solve in their life and especially as it relates to your product or service. So you can do this in different ways. One, you can survey them. So if you have a mailing list or an email list is even better. There are some survey tools out there like survey monkey and other things like that where you can actually send out a survey, uh, by email and get folks to walk through that survey and answer the questions. If you’re going to do an online survey with your existing clients or your buyers, I would highly suggest that you offer them some kind of an ethical bribe.
00:53 What does that mean? Reward them for their time? Give them something, give them a gift card, give them one of your products. Or services, give them tickets to something, something. It doesn’t have to be super expensive, but give them something that rewards them for their time because the information that you’re going to be getting back from them is super valuable. So, uh, conducting a survey is a great way to get more information. Number two, I really like these. It’s conducting actual interviews with them by phone or by video conference. The way that we produced this, um, there you can do it in person and when you’re at an event, if you’re out there and maybe get all of your clients together, if you’re a local business owner, you’re going to invite them all to a dinner or a coffee or a lunch and learn or something, some kind of a, you’re gonna invite them to some kind of a reception and that would give them a chance to interact with you.
01:44 And then while you’re interacting with them, you can ask them your questions and interview them. Just picking up the phone and talking to them is going to make you extremely powerful because you’re going to get it right from their mouth and they’re going to articulate things in a way that you hadn’t even thought of. The words that they say are actually the words that you’ll begin using in your advertising or marketing messages, whenever you get to the next step of putting together your messaging. The third way that you can ask them questions is during pre-existing contact with them. What I mean by that, if you already have a coaching call scheduled with people, if you already have some sort of a strategy session scheduled, if you already have a service call when you’re going out and meeting with your clients on a regular basis, if you run the, the route, you know, or run the traps or whatever and you’re constantly seeing your clients and you’ve already got time on your schedule with them, integrate this Q and A process into those contacts with them.
02:45 So the second way you can research a target buyer is on the Internet. It’s such a powerful tool because we have the ability to search and find things very, very quickly and we have the ability to sort of ease drop on people’s conversations. How do you do that? Well, you can go to websites and look and see what are people doing, what are they commenting? What are they saying? What are the questions that they’re asking? Whenever you look at a blog for example, and there’s comments down below the blog post, what are the things that people are saying? Because if it’s an active blog or an active blog post, you can be able to gather insights from them because they literally sat there and with their own emotions and feelings typed out what they were thinking related to that information. So find articles that are related to your topic that are related to your product that are related to the problem that these people are trying to solve and then see what kind of comments that they put down below that and also find out what kind of questions that they ask in there.
03:46 Another great place online to look is in forums. Now, in the old days we had lots of forums and forums still exist so you can look up like if you’re, whatever your business is, put that in and then forum. So if you are a person that targets copywriters, you can type copywriting forum. If you’re a person that goes after attorneys, you’d type Attorney Forum and you’ll find these on the internet. What are they? They’re communities where people go in and ask questions and then the peers share their answers to those questions. A new variation of that is groups, so on Facebook we have groups. In Linkedin, we have groups and you can go in there. You don’t even initially need to go in there and start answering questions or asking questions or posting. Certainly don’t go in there and start pitching their product or service.
04:36 Go into those groups and just be a fly on the wall. Watch the kind of questions people are asking. Watch the kind of answers that are given? Watch their reactions to those questions that are asked and the answers that are given. Watch what peers answer and additional questions that are asked, that are spun off of that, and you can get entire books of content of understanding into your markets, mean remember we talked about their psychographics, how they word their problems, what they’re wanting, their expectations or dreams, their hopes, their aspirations. You can find out what they’re interested in, what they’re reading, because they’ll say, I was reading such and such book and that it came up and this is now my question and I’m trying to solve this problem, and you’re going to, boom, there’s an author. That’s a name I could target in my marketing. So looking inside those, those groups, super powerful.
American entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist with more than 26-years experience starting, building, buying, and selling companies in publishing, media, advertising, software, e-commerce, textiles, training, real estate, and consulting. He's Founder & CEO of Harbor City Capital.