Creating a customer avatar can help you refine your content and products in order to help your business excel. Whether you’re looking to help grow your following or hone in your sales pitch, you need to know what is an avatar and how to create one.
When I recently asked my Facebook group, “What is an Avatar?” I was shocked when the majority of responders said, “No idea!”
Most people don’t feel confident about who they’re writing to and how to talk to them. Let’s begin by answering the question what is a customer avatar and then we’ll dive into how to create your own avatar that you can feel confident about.
IE 80: What is an Avatar & How to Create One: A Training for Bloggers
What Is a Customer Avatar?
I understand why there is confusion over the question what is an avatar? The first time I ever heard the word, I associated it with video games or the little picture you can choose to represent yourself online. But that’s not what we’re talking about when we use the term “avatar” as it relates to your audience.
Your avatar is simply your ideal audience member or customer.
If you are a blogger, your avatar is the person you are writing to every time you publish a blog post. If you are a blogger and you also create products, your avatar is the audience member that not only reads your blog, but is also the person you want to reach with your products.
Your Avatar Is a Real Person
When you create your avatar, you want it to be as close to a real person as possible. What does that mean?
Simply put, you are creating a persona from scratch. You’ll need to give your person a name, decide what their occupation is, and how old they are.
You also want to develop their family status; are they married? Do they have kids? Are they a stay-at-home parent or do they work full-time?
What to include when making a customer avatar:
Part of creating your avatar is knowing who your current audience is. If your audience is 65% women and 35% men, you want to create a female avatar. Not because you don’t care about the male readers, but because you want to speak to the majority of your audience.
While you’re deciding male or female, go ahead and decide on the income level of your avatar. Why does their income level matter?
It matters because when you begin creating products or using affiliate links, you need to know what they can afford to spend. If your avatar is a stay-at-home mom with a lower-middle-class income, you don’t want to have a bunch of Pottery Barn affiliate links. You need to know what they can afford to spend so that you know what to create and what to share.
Ideas for what to include:
- Martial status
- Likes and Dislikes
The next thing to ask is which social media platforms does she use on a regular basis? The best way to find this information is by looking at your analytics. See where your traffic is coming from and what the age range of your audience is.
Where does she live? This is important because the products you talk about may not relate to everyone depending on their geographical location.
Lastly, what are her goals and values? What does she want from her life? What are the problems that keep her from getting there?
What is an Avatar?: My Avatar for my Lifestyle Blog
My blog, The Melrose Family, is a lifestyle blog, which means that my topics are a bit broad and not niched down as tightly as some blogs. This gives me the opportunity to work with multiple sponsors but it doesn’t mean that I don’t have to know my avatar. I want to share my avatar with you in hopes of helping you develop yours.
My avatar for The Melrose Family is a female in her late 30’s, who lives in New Jersey but travels to New York City for work. She has a high-level corporate job with a high, six-figure salary that requires her to be away from home for over 12 hours a day, including travel time. She consumes most of her online content via Facebook with an occasional scroll through Instagram.
She is married and has one daughter who is the center of her world. Because she is unable to have more children, she wants to spend the time she has with her daughter creating as many memories as possible. She desires family sit-down meals, easy projects they can do together, and weekend family trips to make even more memories. She uses Pinterest for meal ideas that are quick and easy and for projects to do with her daughter in the limited amount of time they have together.
How to Create Your Avatar
I gave you a lot of information about my avatar. I told you about her family, her job, where she lives, that she makes a lot of money, what is important to her, her problems, and where she spends her time online. So how did I come up with some of that stuff? And how can you?
Take yourself, 3 years ago, combine it with your best friend, and there’s your avatar. Why do you take yourself from 3 years ago? You do that because you can share more freely and fully things that you’ve been practicing for a while. If you don’t cook, you don’t want to start a cooking blog. But if you’ve been practicing making easy meals for a couple of years, you’re ready to start sharing what you’ve learned.
Where does the best friend come in? She’s the one who keeps you honest. She’s the one who would check you on everything you write and tell you if something isn’t authentic. You need someone to call you out when you do things that you wouldn’t do in real life. She will also be the one to tell you when you really hit her in the feelings.
Avatar Vs. Audience
I don’t want you to confuse your audience with your avatar. Yes, you want to know who is already there engaging with your content. But your audience is not your avatar. Your avatar is someone you create. You choose everything about them. Remember, your avatar is this one specific person you have created. Give her a name and decide all the details I shared about. Create her family, her job, where she lives, how much money she makes, what she values, what her problems are, etc.
Let’s take it one step further and give her a face. I want you to go to Google and find an image of your avatar. You aren’t going to steal this image; you are going to get an image that you can either turn into computer wallpaper or that you can print out. And this person is going to be your avatar.
Once you decide on all of the personal details for your avatar, you need to write it all down. You can do it in Google docs if you want but you need to have it somewhere that you can look at it on a regular basis. Answer all the questions that I gave you about this person
- Family Status
- Geographic location
- Preferred Social Media Channels
Once you have these facts, create a story for her. Notice I didn’t just say that my avatar has one daughter; I also told you that she can’t have more children. That helps me when I create content to know what she needs from me in terms of projects she can do with her daughter. I also told you that she values family dinners. But her job places huge demands on her time so I know I need to create quick and easy recipes for her.
What Is Your Elevator Pitch?
Can you tell me in one sentence what type of content you create and who you serve? If you can’t, that tells me that you don’t know. If you don’t know your elevator pitch, you can’t know what to write or who to write to.
You need to know before you start creating content what type of content it is going to be and who it is for. If you tell me that your niche is motherhood and I go to your blog and see posts about all kinds of things that aren’t related to motherhood, you’ve lost sight of your purpose.
Be careful not to niche yourself so tightly that you run out of content as well. If you create a blog and content around newborns, what’s going to happen when your kids start getting bigger? Will you still be passionate about newborns? It is possible to do but you have to know that your passion for the topic can outlast your circumstances.
Okay, it’s time for action. I want you all to follow the steps to create your own avatar and then share it with me or with an accountability partner. Answer all the questions I shared and then create a story so that you know exactly who you are creating content for. You will have much more clarity once you finish!
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