Knowing your customer is essential when it comes to marketing and networking.

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How Many Businesses Are There In The UK?

Let’s look at how many businesses there are in the UK.   According to Government statistics, there are approximately 5.6 million businesses in the UK. Of these, 99% are small businesses with less than 50 employees.Tracy Heatley holding her logo for the Knowing Your Customer blog

Based on my years in marketing, I estimate that over 70% of micro businesses don’t know their target market.   This is an important element of your marketing strategy and networking planning.   After all, if you don’t know your customer how can you possibly target them? Furthermore, when you’re networking, if you can’t communicate who you want introductions to then you’re not going to get the referrals you want.

I talk more about this topic in relation to business networking on my Knowing Your Customer podcast that was released in March 2021.  It may be worth having a little listen to this podcast too.  You can listen here or on any podcasting platform that you use.  It’s available on Apple, Spotify and all major podcasting platforms. To subscribe or listen, search your podcasting platform for Be Better With Tracy Heatley.

Why Is Knowing Your Customer Important?

When focusing on why knowing your customer is important there’s a few crucial things that I’d like to share with you. There are many business owners who start marketing and networking with a lack of knowledge about their target market.  When I was being trained by  Anthony Robins back in 2006, one of the things I remember him saying was, “Where your focus goes your energy flows”.  It’s the same with marketing and networking. What you focus on will determine the customers and types of referrals you get.

Don’t choose to aim for a target that you cannot see, because you may put a strain on vital resources like finance, employees, your time and technology.  Take the timeKnow Your Customer Post It Note Image to truly get to know your customer.  This can be by learning to tap into your customer base or by producing a profile of potential customers.  Either way, knowing your customer is a must for successful marketing and nifty networking.

How To Get To Know Your Customer

Here are a few techniques to help you learn how to get to know your customer. Two connecting jigsaw pieces to show the missing piece was for Tracy Heatley to go back to school

Produce a customer avatar, because this will help you really get to know who your ideal customer is.   As a result, your marketing and networking activities will be focused and yield a greater return for you and your business.  When I’m running my networking groups, I’m constantly suggesting that people are specific about who they want referrals too.  When I’m advising my marketing clients about marketing planning, this is one of the most important things we do.  Marketing and networking success relies on reaching the right people, so building customer avatar will help massively. Essentially, it’s like building a fictitious representation of your ideal customer.

Use you customer database to explore any similarities with your customers.  This is a great way of working out what other potential customers you could be targeting.   It’s definitely worth taking the time to do this, because the results you get may be totally different to what your expectations are right now.   It’s not uncommon for my marketing mentoring clients to be dumfounded once we’ve analysed their customer base.

What Customer Commonalities To Look For

To give you an idea of what customer commonalities to look for when profiling your customers, here are few lists of things that may help:

General Things To Identify

  • Popular products or services bought
  • Why customers chose to do business with you
  • What product or service they bought first
  • What product or services you upsold
  • Frequency of purchase
  • What forms of marketing communications attracted them to you
  • Any concerns they had about doing business with you
  • How long the buying decision took
  • What phases of your sales cycle they went through before buying
  • What problem you solved
  • Any other elements of buyer behaviour that’s relevant to your business
  • What forms of marketing worked to attract them to your business.
  • Price sensitivity levels.

Business To Business Customers (B2B)

  • Geography
  • Type (sole trader, partnership or Limited company)
  • Time in business
  • What part of the business lifecycle are they
  • Industry or business sector.

Business To Business Consumer Customers (B2C)

  • Demographic
  • Household decision maker
  • Profession
  • Salary bracket
  • Where on their lifecycle they are.


As you put the results together you will be forming your customer avatar, which can then be used as part of developing your marketing strategy.  You can also use it to share with your networking associates, so that they know who your ideal customer is.  This will help get you better quality  referrals for the customers you really want to do business with.

About Tracy Heatley

To find out more about the author of this blog, Chartered Marketer Tracy Heatley, everything you need is all right here.  If you would like to contact Tracy Heatley or find out more about her Better Marketing and Better Networking training services, feel free to contact her. If you’re interested in networking then do check out her BoB Clubs North West networking groups too.

There are lots of other free resources available for you including  blogspodcasts, Mind Your Own Mind Your Own Business radio interviews and some book reviews here too.

A Note From Tracy

If you would like help with marketing consultancy, online marketing mentoring, or you need an outsourced marketing director, get in touch with me.  If we’re the right fit, I’d be happy to work with you to get your marketing on point.  Call me on 07812076946 for an informal chat or enquire here.  Once you’ve booked, I’ll get in touch to arrange a date and time to get started.

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