Many first time entrepreneurs fail to get the results they desire with ideal client profiles for two reasons they don’t know what to do next and they do not back up their ideal client profiles with real-world market research. Conducting real-world market research is important for two reasons, it helps you make every first step into the wonderful world of networking and it allows you to see if a total stranger is interested in your business and will buy your products or services. This is especially important if you are a first time entrepreneur with no existing audience or clients. It’s time to take your creative process out of the office and into the real world. Putting you and your business out on the web can be an intimidating experience, especially if you new to sharing in this way. For this reason, I have created a four-step process which will take the fear out of putting yourself out there on the web.


Your Why?

The first step is to consider why you are conducting the target market research. I know this may sound obvious but fear has a way of building up when we make a situation bigger than what it actually is. It’s at this stage that people start to panic and fear they don’t have a big enough audience or worry that no one will respond to their attempts to survey ideal clients. The purpose of a target market survey is to find out the biggest fears and problems of your ideal clients and discover what they are looking for in a solution to their biggest problems. When you approach the survey from this point of view, it’s no longer a big deal; you’re simply gathering data. Nothing more. So forget about the size of your list or lack of an email list, or your fear of getting little or no response.


Create Your List of Questions

Before we dive into the type of questions you should ask your ideal audience it’s important to consider what you want to do with the answers you receive. The answers to the questions on your survey will help you design a product or service that provides a compelling solution to your ideal clients biggest problems. The survey will also help you understand the language your ideal client uses to describe their biggest problems and challenges as well as the solutions they are looking for, this language is so important. The key to effective communication whether it’s in person, on a blog, or on your sales page, is to communicate your message in the language of the receiver. This technique helps your ideal client to realise that you understand them, and therefore, you know how to help them. So, what types of questions should you ask your ideal clients?


The key to creating a great survey is to only ask questions that serve a purpose. The questions you ask should help you create a bigger picture of who your ideal client is, what they are struggling with, how they define success, and what they really want. Your survey could ask more focused questions about the types of products they are considering, what needs they have that are not being met in the current market. The survey should dig deep, so you may need to ask certain questions in multiple ways. An example of this would be:


  • What are your biggest stresses, worries, and anxieties about starting your own business?
  • If you had access to your own coach 24/7, what would you need accountability on?
  • What do you wish was different about your current circumstances with your dream business?


This technique comes from the field of coaching, were a coach will ask a similar question in order to draw a bigger picture of what is going on the life of their client. These questions allow the client to have a deeper understanding of how their problem is affecting them and will encourage them to seek a solution and take action.


I’ve created another issue of the Zero to Business magazine with a complete list of questions you might want to ask your ideal clients as you conduct your target market research. Join my VIP list for instant access to my resource library and download the PDF.



Encourage Engagement

After you have carefully crafted a survey that your ideal client would agree to participate in, the next step is to encourage engagement. The easiest and simplest way to encourage engagement is to offer a free gift to entice people to participate in your survey. For instance, as I am creating content for my Zero to Business Coaching programme, I shared my survey and offered 5 participants a Zero to Business Mini Coaching Session as a way to thank participants for sharing their insights with me.


One of the biggest things that put people off participating in surveys is they can often be dull, boring, and super long. Avoid this by keeping your introduction short and in the same style you use on your blog, so ditch the formal language, and make it fun. Before you publish your survey go through the survey and delete any questions that do not serve a purpose. Unless this is the first time you have formally surveyed your audience, skip questions that relate to demographics such as age, gender and similar questions. If you filled out my survey then you would have noticed that I did ask these questions. The reason for this is because my blog is transitioning from personal success to focusing on creating your dream business, and as a part of this transition, I am curious to see how my audience is changing, but I’ve also listed these questions as not required, so people have the option to divulge this information if they desire.


Get Yourself + Survey Out There

The fourth and final step is to share your survey. The point of this is to get your survey in front of as many eyeballs as possible. I was listening to a podcast by Amy Porterfield a few weeks ago and I was inspired and came up with a few of ideas about where I could share my survey:


Email List: If you have an email list no matter how big or small it may be, the people on this list will be more likely to participate in your survey because they know, like, and trust you.
On Your Website: Embed the survey in a blog post or on its own page on your website.
On Social Media: share or embed your survey on your social media accounts, in a Facebook group you manage or that you are a part of (with permission from the admins, of course).
On Your Linked In account: Post your survey as an update or post on LinkedIn.
Create a short introductory video for your survey and share it on YouTube along with the links.


The aim of this survey is to collect valuable insights into the lives of your ideal client. If you are a new entrepreneur just starting out, don’t panic about the size of your email list or whether people are not immediately responding. You don’t necessarily need a massive amount of responses for you to get value out of a survey. It may take some time to get responses, especially if you’re just starting out, so keep improving your survey and putting it out there, and focus on getting the next response instead of the first 100.


If you haven’t already, join my VIP List and download my Free Business Clarity Kit for new + Aspiring Entrepreneurs and let me know what action you plan on taking today, to help you become unstuck and create a business and lifestyle of your dreams. I’d love to hear from you so leave your answers in the comments box below.


With love,

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Amelia Hay

Author + Coach at Amelia Hay International
I help multi-passionate women just like you to package, brand and market your passions so that you can create your dream business and life, find clarity, confidence, and clients, and make a difference in your world.
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