Why You Need an ICA in Your Business
So you want to start an online biz…
Sounds fun until you think – who am I going to sell to?!
Is it better to design your business to appeal to everyone… or niche down and focus on a specific group of people?
If you’re new to the biz world, you probably think “everyone.”
But it’s a mistake… one many new entrepreneurs fall prey to.
In this podcast episode
, I share alllll the reasons why getting laser focused on one specific “person” is key to grow and scale your biz.
Why You Need an ICA in Your Business
What is an ICA?
ICA stands for Ideal Client Avatar.
Or Ideal Customer Avatar (whatever terminology you prefer to use).
It’s basically a fancy way of saying “I’m creating a picture of my dream buyer.”
When you create your own ICA, you develop a profile of the perfect person you want to work with in your biz.
Down to her name, age, where she lives, where she hangs out and shops… and what drives her.
This is a foundational part of creating your biz – one many entrepreneurs tend to skip over.
Why you need an ICA in your biz.
When you know your ICA, you’ll be able to:
- Increase your chances of being successful.
- Know what to say to her.
- Save time and money – because you’ll be able to find her IRL and online easier.
Let’s explore these one by one:
Creating an ICA helps you increase your odds of success.
There’s a saying that goes, “When you try to appeal to everyone, you appeal to no one.”
I mean, for realz… no one sees themselves as an “everyone”.
You’re way more likely to be successful when you niche down and solve the problems of a specific group of people.
Think about it. We’re all looking for something.
Maybe there’s an issue we need resolved. Maybe it’s a desire we have. Or maybe there’s an unmet need we don’t even realize.
For example, I got into network marketing because of an unmet need.
I left my high-paying role as a corporate attorney and was teaching Pilates and yoga. And for a time, I really enjoyed it.
I liked being in the fitness industry, getting paid to live a healthy lifestyle, wear leggings all day, and help others do the same… but the downgrade in my lifestyle was definitely noticed.
One day, a complete stranger on FB introduced me to essential oils. And I thought, “Why not try them?”
What I discovered was they not only helped me feel better in my body, mind, and emotions… but the company and opportunity literally opened up an entirely new business model I had no idea existed.
The unmet need I had was to unlock my earning potential. To get back to—OR SURPASS—the income I had been making as an attorney… while continuing my health calling.
And seeing the opportunity to marry my passion for wellness with my desire to get back the financial freedom and lifestyle I had was a total no-brainer for me.
Now I’m not saying that on Day 1 of me enrolling I was back to the lifestyle I wanted.
It definitely took work and grit and putting in the effort – even when it was hard… and YES, it sure HAS been hard every now and more often than not… LOL.
But over time, I CREATED success. Before I had intention… because I had passion… and because I WANTED it.
Now let’s say this same stranger who introduced me to essential oils was in a completely different business. One that didn’t resonate with me at all.
Let’s say she sold… keto diet plans. LOL
And if she came up to me and said, “Hey Hayley, if you sell these keto plans with me, you’ll be able to triple your income, be home with your daughter, and be able to travel while still bringing in money…”
I’d be like…
Mega hard pass.
And she’d have failed connecting or collabing with me.
Because she didn’t bother to do the work of figuring out the ideal person for her product.
To her, she has a great opportunity—and in her eyes a great product—why wouldn’t EVERYBODY want to get in on this?
It’s because we don’t see ourselves as “everyone”.
And if you approach your biz from that “I’m for everyone” mindset, you’re gonna waste a lot of time and energy (probably money too) going after people who aren’t meant for you and your biz.
Creating your ICA helps you know what to say to her.
When you have your ICA in mind, things get simple.
Have you ever tried to have a deep conversation with someone you don’t really know – like right off the bat?
It’s hard AF.
You often get a lot of resistance… or ignored completely.
You aren’t able to connect authentically – because you don’t know HOW. So you’re forced to stay at the surface.
I mean, you don’t know anything about your person so it’s pretty damn hard to go deep.
And deep is where connection and relationship lie.
When you create your ICA – and you have this picture of your dream customer or client in your mind – it’s much easier to know what to say.
AKA: come up with your messaging. AKA: your content.
BTW, if you get a reaction to the word “content” all it really means is how you talk with someone.
You speak, right? LOL
Don’t let the fancy buzzword fool ya.
It’s just talking – and developing your ICA lets you talk with one specific person super well.
So they find you, tell their friends who are the same caliber about you, and you get to build your biz.
Like attracts like, my friends.
So don’t aim for the middle. Don’t aim for vanilla.
Be crystal clear on who you wanna work with, spend your time with, and use this info to tailor your words to connect with her.
Creating an ICA helps you know WHERE to reach her.
It’s all well and good to create a profile of your ICA… but the real magic comes in when you use this info to find her. So you can connect with her.
I’m talking about IRL and online.
So picture your ICA… and think about where she hangs. Where she spends her money. What she’d never be caught dead doing.
- Is your dream customer or client shopping inside Gucci or Walmart?
- Is she still on Facebook or has she abandoned ship for Instagram and TikTok?
- Is she going to a big chain gym or a boutique studio kind of girl?
Knowing this information helps you know where to focus your efforts to get in front of her.
Remember how I said that developing and understanding your ICA makes your life simpler?
Well, if you’re still trying to appeal to everyone, then it makes sense that you’d tell yourself that you need to be on ALLLL the platforms.
And how much time and effort would THAT take? Is that really how you wanna live your life?
When you develop your own ICA, you get to become laser focused on the few areas where she DOES hang out.
So you can consistently get in front of her. Connect with her. Build a relationship with her.
Let’s bust this myth real fast…
You do NOT have to be on every social media platform. 1-2 is enough.
Where she hangs out, you hang out.
As you post consistently on those platforms, chances are she’ll see you there and realize, “OMG yes, this is my person. I like her. I trust her. I wanna do more with her.”
And you get to deepen that relationship over time.
Knowing your ICA helps you know HOW to communicate with her.
For example, is she opening her email multiple times a day – or is the best way to get in front of her via text?
If you sent her a 1-minute voice memo would she prefer that – or would she think you’re a total weirdo?
Or what would she think if you (*gulp*) actually called her?
Knowing this info helps you connect with her via her ideal method. It also informs the technology you choose to use in your biz.
Here’s an example.
I actually know a very successful woman who has built her business without much social media.
Pretty much all of her business is through word of mouth and referrals. And she’s discovered her community isn’t on Facebook either.
They’re all on Whatsapp (big international community).
So what she did was create a private Whatsapp group – and that’s how she does her group coaching.
And not only does her community prefer that – they actually engage. Because she tailored her communication methodology to meet them where they’re (literally) at.
How to create your own ICA.
Developing your ICA is both an art and a science.
It’s not like there’s an ICA encyclopedia where you look up exactly who yours is and where she hangs out and how to connect with her.
You get to determine this. Create it for yourself and your own biz.
So think of yourself as a super adorbs scientist.
And then test your theories.
And if they don’t – or you aren’t seeing the results you desire – you get to try something new.
Business is all an experiment, my friend. So approach it with a learner’s mindset.
I mean, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve discovered a new methodology that’s working for someone else, tried it out in my biz… and it tanks.
But you know what? That’s ok.
Not everyone has the same exact business.
Not every method is going to work for you.
And while there ARE some tried-and-true principles that consistently work… like:
- Building relationships.
- Creating value.
- Consistency, grit, and determination.
It’s so incredibly important that you design your own plan.
Get clear on who YOU are in your biz… WHY you want to have a business… what your INTENTION is… and WHO you want to work with.
The guide I’m offering you FREE today helps you do that.
Super quick snapshot of what’s inside:
1. You’ll start off by coming up with your own intention.
What does your dream biz look like?
Why do you want it?
How will your life change when you have it?
2. Then you’ll map out your vision, beliefs, and values.
You may not really be intimately familiar with your vision, beliefs, or values just yet. Or how they play into your biz.
But spoiler alert: if you don’t know these things about yourself – or what your business is going to stand for – you’re way more likely to be led astray.
Or worse, not do anything at all because you get frozen with every opportunity and decision in front of you.
Not to mention, getting crystal clear on these 3 pillars helps ensure you’re constantly moving in the right direction. You get to ask yourself, “Will this decision take me toward my vision? Or is it a distraction?”
3. Then you’ll complete an exercise to create your own ICA – now that you understand WHY you need one.
It’s super fun actually – daydreaming about who you want to work with. Creating a story about her.
Once you have these first 3 parts done, you’ll be able to complete the rest of the guide super easily. Walking away with a literal blueprint for your biz.
From how to get in front of your ICA… to what kind of product, service, or offer you’re going to share with her.
It’s basically like a business dream journal. One you get to take and put into action.
No more stress about what you’re gonna do. No more anxiety over what to say.
You’ll have all that in front of you.
You’ll also be able to check to see if what you’ve dreamed up in your guide is actually translating to real world results. If it’s not, make tweaks.
It’s perfectly ok and you should EXPECT this to happen.
I don’t even want to tell you how many times I’ve adapted my ICA as my business has evolved over the last 10 years. And to be real with you, I often feel like I waited too long to do it.
Like, I see the signs and go, “Wait, this isn’t working anymore… what’s shifted?”
So I put on my scientist hat, pay attention, and then make the call.
I’m telling you this because it’s the truth – and I want you to know it’s normal. Happens to all of us.
Now one more thing…
What worked for you yesterday may not work tomorrow.
Get used to it. That’s life as an entrepreneur – so get used to it. LOL.
The only thing you can do is move forward from here. Take imperfect action. But TAKE that action.
Because it’s only for a limited time – then it goes back to $79.
I’ll see ya online.