How have you been enjoying our 4-part blog series with The Youngrens? So far, there have been so many useful tips that you can use when searching for your ideal client. If you have missed any of the other parts of this series, access them here:
Today, we are covering the final topic in the series – If My Ideal Clients are Rich, Do I Need to Act Rich? The Youngrens will cover how you can relate to all of your ideal clients, regardless of your status. Enjoy! 🙂
In this book, he redefines two words in a really interesting way – ‘weird’ and ‘rich.’
Seth uses the word ‘weird’ as a way to describes our habits. He says that we all make specific choices about how we spend our time and our money, and we are getting even more specific about these choices in recent years. Consumers, particularly millennials, are wanting more and more niche products that have unique stories and creative uses. We want craft coffees, craft beers, craft cupcakes, and craft food. We want meaningful products that make our world better or that serve meaningful purposes.
Seth describes these individual decisions as our particular ‘weirds.’ For example, if you choose organic lettuce at the grocery store instead of regular lettuce, Seth would say that you are making a ‘weird’ decision.
The New Definition of ‘Rich’
As we all know, the second word Seth Godin redefines – ‘rich’ – has many connotations associated with it, but Seth redefines it in a very useful way when it comes to our four-part series here about Discovering Your Ideal Client.
Seth defines ‘rich’ as the freedom and ability to make choices about the way in which one lives. If you have food, shelter, and safety, and you are able to decide what kind of shelter in which you would like to live or what kind of food you would like to eat, then you are rich, according to Seth, even if those choices are relatively limited.
Let’s apply this to wedding photography. In San Diego, I would argue that a couple has a variety of photographers and styles to choose from when their budget is above $1,500. They have the ability pick a photographer based on style and personality, and not just based on price. If they have less than $1,500 to spend on wedding photography, then their choice has to be motivated almost exclusively by price versus style or personality, since there are much fewer photographers in that price range.
With that in mind, if you charge more than $1,500 for your wedding photography services, then your clients are rich. It may not feel like it all of the time… but they are. I promise! They are making their photography decision based on style, values, and personality as well as price.
What If I’m Not Rich?
So how does this relate to the Ideal Client conversation? One of the most common questions I get when I coach photographers on discovering their ideal clients is this: “How am I supposed to relate to my clients if my ideal clients are usually richer than I am?”
The answer to that question is to redefine what you mean by the word ‘rich.’ If we’re using Seth Godin’s definition and you yourself are able to make decisions about the way you live, then you are rich just like your clients. You have ‘weird’ habits just like your ideal clients have ‘weird’ habits. You both make decisions about what you buy and how you spend your time, and those decisions are based on a set of value systems that you both share. So what you need to focus on instead of wealth is what kinds of ‘weirds’ and values you share with your ideal clients.
In short, you don’t have to be rich in order to serve high-end, wealthy clientele, but you DO need to understand why they spend their money the way they do. You need to understand their VALUES.
For example, does your ideal client seem to spend a lot of money on wine but not on electronics? Do they tend to spend money on big houses but drive an economical car? Do they spend money on lavish vacations but rent a small condo? Will they spend money on movies but not on fancy restaurants? Do they spend money at vintage stores but won’t shop at the mall because it’s too corporate?
These are all examples of different ‘weirds’ that are driven by underlying values, and understanding why these kinds of decisions are being made is what we’re trying to do when we’re creating an ideal client profile.
Do I Need to Act Rich?
A second common question that quickly follows the first one is: “Do I need to act rich? Do I need to buy a designer purse or get a black Land Rover because all of my clients have them?”
My simple answer to this question is a flat NO. If you wouldn’t ever buy a Land Rover or wear designer clothes in the first place, then you definitely shouldn’t start buying them just to impress your ideal clients. It can easily come across as fake and disingenuous, and people can smell that kind of inauthenticity from a mile away. You will most like turn OFF your ideal clients instead of turning them on.
Instead, think about fitting in with your ideal clients versus matching them. If you were invited to a party that your ideal client is throwing, would you fit in with the rest of the guests? What kind of party would it be – a backyard BBQ? Rooftop cocktails? Beers in a dive bar? A home-cooked dinner in a traditional dining room?
Remember that we’re talking about YOUR ideal client, not THE ideal client. These clients are ideal because you want to be around them, which means that you probably share similar interests and values. You should be able to easily get along with them, and fitting in shouldn’t be hard work.
Which brings me to my final (and incredibly important) point of this series – if you’re finding that you need to act like something you’re not in order to attract or be around your ideal clients, then you’re not going after your true ideal client. You’re going after a type of client that someone else has probably told you to go after. You need to rethink your ideal client profile, and figure out who YOU love and enjoy, without the influence of others.
Thank you so much for joining me for this four-part series on Discovering Your Ideal Client. If you found this article or this series helpful, intriguing, or inspiring, then I would so love it if you would share it with a friend that you think would love it too. Also, make sure to sign up for our newsletter over at The Youngrens. We’re releasing our Discover Your Ideal Client Video Course soon, and it covers so much more in-depth material on this incredibly interesting topic PLUS it walks you through the step-by-step process of creating your own One Sentence Ideal Client Profile. You don’t want to miss it!
When you book ideal clients that are perfect for you, your work becomes more enjoyable and you can grow your business! It is important to make time in your business to develop relationships with your clients, and one way to do this is by determining areas of your business that you should not be spending time on, such as color correction. By sending your images to a photo editing company, you can use that time to really focus on your ideal client and how to attract them to your business! Download our Guide to Content Marketing for Wedding Photographers and learn how you can use your images to attract more ideal clients!