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Hi! I'm Sarah Moon!

Sharp Knives & Addressing Your Audience 🗡️

Published 3 months ago • 2 min read

Hello Reader,

Seven or eight years ago, I bought my husband the best holiday gift ever: a handmade Japanese chef's knife (he does most of our cooking and loves trying new recipes).

The experience of buying this knife was incredible. I went into a local, independent shop that sells Japanese knives and only Japanese knives and was **that customer.** I basically said, "I know nothing about knives, I just want to buy something wonderful."

Busy as it was, the lovely folks at this shop asked me loads of questions about what he cooked, how often, even things like his height. They wanted to help me get this gift right. They showed me a bunch of knives in the budget I'd stated and none felt quite right. They could tell I wasn't quite happy with any of them, and they brought over another one—slightly over my budget. The instant I picked it up, I knew it was perfect. I paid, they wrapped it up, and tucked in a card for a free knife sharpening along with the care instructions.

Needless to say, my husband was delighted and he has diligently followed those care instructions for years, including regular sharpenings.

This week, he shared with me that the last time he dropped off his knife to get some TLC, they had shifted their sharpening business a bit.

Just like when I purchased the knife, they had questions: how was he using it, how sharp did he want it to be, what kind of maintenance was he doing? The assessed the condition, and gave some advice on it.

They now had several effectively productized services around sharpening that matched various customers' needs. Because of this, the professional chefs who use their service regularly can get their knives (this is a quote) "sharp as a razor" and people like my husband can have their home knife (another quote) "pretty sharp but I probably won't cut off a finger." (Okay, that "probably" definitely gave me pause.)

Even though their audience is quite niche (people who cook enough to buy fancy handmade knives with a real maker's name on it), they understand the nuances and spectrum even that audience operates within. Their needs vary, and they tailor their approach, message, and services to those nuances.

When I talk about "Address Your Audience," this kind of detail is what I mean.

No fictional client avatars that don't actually look like real people; no cookie cutter psychographic profiles. Deep understanding of motivation and what people want is the real key to building an audience for the long haul.

One of the biggest disservices marketers do (and it's not their fault, it's because of a cultural demand for simple scripts) is boil customers/clients down to caricatures and not complex humans. Even at scale we CAN do it, but it doesn't neatly fit into a slide deck. Those of us who go to the effort—like that knife shop—will reap the rewards.

Talk soon,

Sarah

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Hi! I'm Sarah Moon!

The status quo of modern marketing isn't designed for you and me.The hard truth is that most marketing strategies are designed for massive corporations, while small businesses, consultants, coaches, and other experts are left feeling that the advice they’re given just doesn’t fit—and they’re right. We have two choices: we can struggle to force our businesses into an ill-fitting mold, or we can reinvent a system that works for us and allows us to thrive. I don’t know about you, I prefer door number two. 💌 Reach our team at hello@smco.studio. 🌟 Ready to work together? https://sarahmoon.net/get-started

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