When you are starting or developing your business, it is important that you know exactly who will be your ideal client. That way you will be better able to know how to match their needs with your services. It is not ethical or practical to try to serve everyone in a society and you therefore not only need to identify who will be your client but also who you will not serve.
First of all, you will need to examine your areas of competency. What skills, abilities and supervision have you had in a specific area that have given you the expertise and confidence that will be needed? I'm sure that no one would go to a foot doctor to have brain surgery. Your education prepares you to know a field in depth and your internship or practicum allows you to practice working in that area. A client needs to know that you have not only credentials but also ability to help them with their problem.
There are several things that you need to consider when identifying your ideal client as follows:
1. Age - Do you want your business to cater to children, adolescents, adults or seniors?
2. Gender - Are your services going to be best suited for males or females?
3. Units - Will you be working with individuals, families, groups, organizations or communities?
4. Ability to pay - What types of people would be able to afford your services or have coverage to cover the fees?
5. Scope of practice - Is there a particular niche that you are targeting for your business?
6. Exclusions - Who or what types of problems will you not serve? Do you know why you have come to this conclusion?
Once you have identified your ideal client, you will be able to develop an environment that is best suited to them and create a marketing plan that is designed to attract the client.
Working with clients can be difficult at times but knowing that their needs and your serve are matched will allow both of you to experience a degree of satisfaction and success that would otherwise be lost.