Rural Business… What’s Your Story?

by Joanne Steele on February 8, 2011

one Christmas bulb

Perfect Customers are like Christmas lights. If you focus on one individual bulb you will probably light up the whole string.

I have talked often about the vital necessity of focusing your marketing on your most Perfect or Ideal Customer in order to successfully market on the internet.

I came across this important and interesting article at that stresses the same thing for a very specific part of your internet marketing efforts, your words.

This article makes crystal clear the consequences of trying to catch everyone’s attention with the content you write for your website and your social media networks. You capture the attention of nobody. You are totally ignored because no one cares about those generalities peppered with adjectives.

Adjectives are never a substitute for a great story involving your Perfect Customer’s experience of your product, service, or in the case of a rural community, one of your Rural Culture Elements.

It’s scary for a rural business to focus on a particular customer. I could feel that fear in the participants of my workshop class in Dunsmuir, CA last night.

“Doesn’t focusing on ONE Perfect Customer,” they were worrying, ” mean you’re ignoring all those other potential customers???” The fact is that everyone loves a great story, and nobody is compelled to action by a string of useless generalities.

A story of granny and her friends meeting every afternoon for a microbrew at the local pub will catch the attention of folks like granny, and  many other people curious about a pub that caters to a different crowd. Generalities about a fabulous, clear, bubbly, nutty, flavorful, fullbodied beer will capture nobody’s attention.

Sure, that pub might miss out on the sports bar crowd and the bar flies, but they, and most small rural businesses can count the numbers of loyal customers they need to have a successful month, in the hundreds.

Capture those hundreds using your stories rather than trying to appeal to everyone with grandiose generalities. It’s more fun for you and for your reader/customer.

Here are a few other posts about attracting your Perfect Customer one at a time:

Coos Bay’s Social Media Strategy to Attract Visitors… One At a Time

What Idaho Can Teach Rural Tourism Businesses About Focusing On Your Ideal Customer.

Photo on Flickr by Leland Francisco

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