Who do you think you’re talking to? Knowing your customer avatar

Who do you think you’re talking to? No, I’m not giving you a dressing down, I’m simply asking you if you know who you’re talking to when you’re on social media. If the answer is ‘yes, of course’, then you can feel all smug and warm. If not, let’s have a little chat about why knowing who you’re talking to is important if you want to attract your ideal fan/followers or customer.

Who do you think you’re talking to? Knowing your customer avatar

Have you heard of the phrase ‘customer avatar’? No, it’s not all about the enormous blue people that strut about wearing next to nothing, it’s a marketing term for who your customer is. OK… I always think of the blue people too. But let’s talk about it in useful terms. Some people give their customer avatar a name. They know how old they are, the shops they like, the way they dress, their income, their job, their family, the type of car they drive, their dislikes, their likes, their passions… even where they like to holiday. Sounds creepy, doesn’t it?

Actually, you might think it sounds impossible too. The good thing is you can have more than one for your business.

Your customer avatar helps you identify your ideal customers and clients. The ones you want to attract in everything you do. This can help with every aspect of your business. If your customer avatar spends every free moment on Instagram, that’s where you want to be, for example. You’ll also know what hashtags and, therefore, content they’re likely to engage with if you know what makes them tick. If they’re predominantly female, it might influence the colour choices for your branding and decor, and visa versa. You’ll find that even if you have multiple avatars, there’s a thread that connects them… and this is very, very important. Working through this and being really clear on your ideal customer/s can help you create better content, better ads, better posts, better website copy and more, because you know who you’re talking to. This can be down to the language that works for them – you’d speak to a five year old differently to an 85 year old, wouldn’t you?

How do you know who you want to talk to?

When you put out your content, have your customer avatars in mind. One of my customer avatars is an equestrian and country lady who has a small business in this sector. She’s serious about business and wants it to do well, but also really appreciates her lifestyle, horses, dogs and everything that surrounds her. Have a quick scroll through my Instagram and you’ll see that a lot of the content I put out should appeal to her. I’m not going to be putting up pictures of mad parties (ok, I don’t really go to those!), family occasions and that sort of thing, because it doesn’t really matter to her. But if I was a mummy blogger, my avatar would be fellow mums who have lots of different attributes, and family occasions would fit in with that absolutely perfectly.

It’s about your audience. Not you.

You should always, ALWAYS be authentic on your social media, and I’m not saying you shouldn’t, but just like you discuss certain things with some people and not others, do the same on social media. It’s not that you’re hiding anything, you’re just cherry picking the most relevant stuff that will relate to, delight and engage your audience, that they want to see and you want to put out there. Because when you work out who you’re talking to, you also want to make sure you’re supplying them with content that’s worthy of their time, that supports them and helps them grow in the way they want. You won’t always get it right – no one does – but you’ll be a whole lot closer if you have your goal client/audience in mind when you write it!

Instagram Stories

 

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Butler Stewart

Butler Stewart is a lovely British brand run by Anna Butler. Actually, it was Anna who very kindly let me borrow a couple of her beautiful Jemma Jackets for my TEDx talk in April. But it’s not all about jackets! In addition to the beautiful Jemma, Butler Stewart also has a range of coats, waistcoats, jeans, shirts and accessories for men and women with a passion for country life and shooting. Now, to fill you in on the brand and its Game Fair activities, it’s over to Anna.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Butler Stewart

How long have you been exhibiting at The Game Fair?

2018 will be Butler Stewart’s third year as an exhibitor but I have loved visiting The Game Fair for many years prior to launching Butler Stewart.

Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair?

The whole of my new shooting collection for men’s and ladies! I am passionate about stunning textiles and colours and I am thrilled to have sourced some beautiful tweeds for this year’s new arrivals.  Sharp tailoring combined with a refined style and attention to detail sets apart our fresh and stunning new shooting collections. I can’t wait to launch them at The Game Fair

What’s your newest product? What makes it special? 

Our new men’s shooting vest, designed with a similar cut to Butler Stewart’s previous vests but with the addition of lapels, overall a smarter tailored finish.

If you could sum up your brand in a sentence, what would it be?

Butler Stewart is an exclusive clothing brand with a contemporary take on tailoring and textiles creating luxurious collections to be sought after.

Do you have a typical customer? Or do you find your products have a broad appeal for all ages?

Butler Stewart appeals to all ages but especially those who have a love for exquisite garments combined with the countryside.

What are you most excited about for this year’s event?

Being back at Ragley Hall, it is such a stunning location and a perfect backdrop for this prestigious event.

Where can visitors find you at the event? Are there any special offers they should know about?

Stand G887a in the Green zone. We have a number of show offers including ladies shirts and waistcoats. We look forward to welcoming visitors to our stand to browse our collections.

Find out more about Butler Stewart by looking at the website here, and find out more about The Game Fair here.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Rydale Clothing

Today we’re giving a shout out to Rydale who, as it turns out, has been attending The Game Fair for around 25 years! I own a few Rydale pieces and was recently gifted a piece to review (more in that another time), and the quality and value have always really appealed to me. And a lot of other people too! So, let’s hand over to Rydale to tell us what they company has in store for this year’s event…

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Rydale Clothing

How long have Rydale Clothing been exhibiting at The Game Fair? 

For around 25 years!

Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game 
Fair? 

Our range of wax and tweed jackets has just got even bigger, including our brand new ladies Bramham II Tweed Waistcoat. We are also well stocked up on our pheasant Wistow shirt, which is proving to be one of our most popular designs – after all, it is the ‘game’ fair! We’ve also added some new prints to the Wistow family with a country dog and flying ducks print, so we’re hoping these will go down a treat!

What’s your newest product? What makes it special? 

Our new Wrelton Snaffle loafers are going down well at shows, so we’re hoping everyone will love them at The Game Fair too, even if they are a little more equestrian. We’ve also been working hard designing some beautiful new boots! I can’t say too much just yet, but let’s just say they are a little more ‘on-trend’ than our current country boots. We’re hoping to get them finished and available to buy in time for the Game Fair! (Fingers crossed, as we’re cutting it fine)

If you could sum up Rydale in a sentence, what would it be? 

Practical, traditional, stylish and affordable country wear, for ladies, gents and children. All inspired by the Yorkshire countryside and with our modern twist.

Do you have a typical customer? Or do you find your products have a broad 
appeal for all ages? 

We try to target our products at all ages; we feel there is something for everyone! With our wide range of men’s, ladies, children’s and accessories, and sizes varying from size XS to 5XL we’re sure to have something that fits the bill for all farmers, equestrians, shooters, and country folk alike.

I know that some of your products are made in the UK- which are these and why do you have them made over here? It’s such a great thing to see a big brand supporting British manufacturing. 

Yes we’re proud to support British manufacturing, we feel this is a very important aspect of our Rydale brand and are aiming to increase our range of British made products. Currently all of our wax and tweed garments are designed and manufactured right here in England. We have a Heritage Range of shooting specific products, including breeks, waistcoats and jackets coming soon too! Keep your eyes peeled as there are a lot of exciting projects going on at HQ at the moment.

What are you most excited about for this year’s event? 

Our customers of course! We always look forward to the Game Fair and can’t wait to see our returning customers each year. It’s great to have a catch up and also wonderful to meet new people and talk to them about our brand.

The Rydale brand is well known for being good quality but incredibly well priced. How do you ensure that your pieces are up for the challenges of country and equestrian life? 

Every year we work hard to ensure they are the best they can be, we feel we are known for being an affordable brand and want to keep our products as good value as possible without compromising on the quality and durability. To achieve this takes a lot of patience and careful designing to reach the best compromise on quality and price tag. This year we have been working on an affordable leather bag range, full of real leather, tweeds and with the occasional snaffle here and there! We just LOVE how it’s come out!

Where can visitors find you at the event? Are there any special offers they should know about? 

We have not one, not two, but three show teams at the Game Fair! Each one with new and exciting products packed in. Rydale always have some great show exclusive offers on, and with our bargain 2 for £18 men’s short sleeved shirts, two for £25 men’s country check shirts, two for £25 ladies Hannah country check shirts, and for a limited time, two for £50 Wistow shirts… the list goes on! Our website gets exclusive promotions and offers too so don’t forget to look us up online!

Have a look at Rydale Clothing or The Game Fair for more information!

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Really Wild Clothing Company

Really Wild Clothing Ledbury Jacket in Glen Lovat Rust copy 2If you love tweed, Liberty prints, silk and all kinds of loveliness, you’re going to adore Really Wild Clothing. I now own two pieces from them and adore them both. The most recent was a Badminton purchase – a burgundy coat. Oh my. It’s the stuff of dreams!

This week, Really Wild Clothing will be making its way up to Ragley Hall, so I took the opportunity to ask them a few questions – over to Vanessa Fearnehough from Really Wild, to find out more…

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Really Wild Clothing

How long have you been exhibiting at The Game Fair?

15 years

Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair? 

Our new lady’s shooting suits in beautiful colours.  Breeks with a matching waistcoat or a pleated skirt with a jacket.

What’s your newest product? What makes it special?

Our silk shirts – from Liberty prints to gorgeous plains, all designed by Really Wild and only available through us.

If you could sum up your brand in a sentence, what would it be?

Luxury clothing which moves effortlessly between town and country, combining the best of British heritage with the most enduring of British style.

Do you have a typical customer? Or do you find your products have a broad appeal for all ages? 

Our boots and clothing appeals to all women who enjoy the countryside.

What are you most excited about for this year’s event?

The launch of our Country AW18 Collection

Where can visitors find you at the event? Are there any special offers they should know about? 

Our stand number is H538.  We will have a sample rail of clothing and we will have special boot promotions running throughout the weekend and a competition to win a pair of Really Wild boots.

See Really Wild Clothing’s website here, or pop along and see them at The Game Fair

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Tom Lane

It’s Game Fair week! So, this week, there will be a blog each day about a fabulous stand to see, and today it’s all about Tom Lane! I’ve been aware of Tom Lane for a little while now and have really loved seeing the product range they produce grow. I also have heard nothing but great things from my friend Harriet Edwards – aka A Girl About Country. She absolutely adores Tom Lane’s Lambswool Jumpers, so I was keen to find out what further delights will be at The Game Fair!

So, without further ado, it’s over to Jayne Ireland from Tom Lane.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Tom Lane

How long have you been exhibiting at The Game Fair?

Our first Game Fair was in 2016 at Ragley Hall (as we only launched in 2015). I am really excited to be going back there this year!

Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair?

I will be launching my new collection of shooting socks this year at the Game Fair, which I can’t wait to share with everyone. The collection has a huge variety of styles and colours. I have also created a larger range for ladies (starting in a size 3) for the ever growing ladies shooting market. We specialise in Merino and Alpaca for our shooting socks and they are all made in the UK.

What’s your newest product? What makes it special?

My newest products are my ladies zip neck jumpers. I have chosen some pastel blues and pinks for this range and they have had a great reception so far.

If you could sum up Tom Lane in a sentence, what would it be?

Tom Lane is a lifestyle brand proudly designing and manufacturing clothing, luxury socks & accessories in Britain.

Do you have a typical customer? Or do you find your products have a broad appeal for all ages?

I find that we don’t really have a typical customer. We certainly have a broad range of customer ages – I like to think we have something for everyone.

What are you most excited about for this year’s event?

We have taken a bigger stand for the Game Fair this year, my business has grown so much from our last visit to Ragley and it’s exciting to be able to showcase all of our new collections.

Where can visitors find Tom Lane at the event? Are there any special offers they should know about?

Our stand number is D325. I am putting on lots of show offers across the ranges to celebrate the Game Fair. See you there!

To find out more about Tom Lane, see the website here. And to find out more about The Game Fair, see the website.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Fairfax & Favor

If you’ve been following this blog for any time at all, you will know I have a bit of a thing for Fairfax & Favor. That might be the understatement of the century. I have quite a big thing for them! I adore my Fairfax & Favor Windsor, Explorers, Reginas and Henleys. And with every new colour that comes out, I feel a strong tug on my credit card!

If you don’t know about Fairfax & Favor (where have you been?!) you’re about to find out a lot more about them… you ready? And I apologise in advance for the the damage this may do to your bank balance, especially if you’re going to The Game Fair!

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Fairfax & Favor

How long have you been exhibiting at The Game Fair?

This year will be our 4th year.

Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair?

We will be launching a limited-edition Windsor handbag at the event, we are extremely excited to show you all!

What’s your newest product? What makes it special?

The Mini Windsor is so special in many ways. A little sister to the Windsor, the Mini Windsor is the definition of cutesy, it comes in three new beautiful summery colours.

If you could sum up your brand in a sentence, what would it be?

Iconic British lifestyle, redefined.

Do you have a typical customer? Or do you find your products have a broad appeal for all ages?

Our products are fantastically diverse, we find they are suited for all generations, whether it’s a shoe, boot or handbag, we find they certainly have a broad appeal, which is brilliant.

What are you most excited about for this year’s event?

This year our stand is going to be bigger and better than ever before; we are really looking forward to be working alongside Twelve Keys Gin in a fantastical botanical collaboration, but also have a few more tricks up our sleeves…

Do you have anything exciting planned at this year’s event – you sometimes have on stand entertainment too, don’t you?

We do indeed, but I cannot give too much away, you will have to come along to stand F599 to find out!

To find out more about Fairfax & Favor and the gorgeous new products you’ll be able to see and drool over at The Game Fair, see the website. And to learn more about The Game Fair, see here

What to wear for TEDx – the videos!

I’m very excited to be able to share these two videos all about ‘What to wear for TEDx’. Of course, the content and the tips contained within aren’t just limited to TEDx events. In fact, the nuggets of information can be applied to any public event where you’re expecting to speak, present… or you just want to dress in a way that gives you confidence.

I was very, very lucky to have the ears, eyes and advice of my ‘Glam Squad’ aka Sophie Callahan and Karen McConnell (Karen & Clan) to help, and was very, very kindly lent some amazing products from Butler Stewart and Hiho Silver. As you’ll see in these videos, there’s a lot more to working out what to wear for a TEDx event than just what you like. There are a lot of factors you need to consider too…

What to wear for TEDx – part 1

 

What to wear for TEDx – part 2

A HUGE thank you to Sophie, Karen, Anna (Butler Stewart), Emma and Michelle (Hiho Silver). And obviously to TEDx for having me.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Ariat

Ariat at The Game Fair

Ariat – Stoneleigh

When you think of Ariat, what do you think of? Elite riders? Eventing? Showjumping? Dressage? Well, this blog is going to make you think of country too!

I’ve been a huge fan of Ariat for as long as I can remember and continue to adore the company’s clothing and footwear collections. I caught up with Ariat’s Marketing Manager, Melanie Selman, and asked her all about The Game Fair and what we can expect to see from the brand.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Ariat

How long have Ariat been exhibiting at The Game Fair? If this is your first time, can you tell me why you’re going this year?

This is our first year, the country and hunting market is a large, important market and as such The Game Fair is the place to be.

Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair? 

As this is our first time at the event there are bound to be a number of people not yet familiar with the brand so rather than being excited to show a specific product we are really excited at presenting our brand to a new audience

Ariat at The Game Fair

Ariat – Catalyst

What’s your newest product? What makes it special?

Our real hero product is our Catalyst Defiant, this is the perfect boot for the serious outdoorsman. Constructed from the finest waterproof leather they feature a waterproof and breathable GORE-TEX® membrane as well as temperature-managing X-STATIC® layer for odour protection. Ariat’s Cobalt™ VX technology protects, stabilises and supports while 400g Thinsulate™ Ultra insulation provides exceptional warmth in extremely cold and damp conditions. The Vibram® outsole offers superior traction and durability, the protective rubber rand prevents scuffs and scratches and the high rebound PU midsole dissipates impact. Built on an anatomically contoured last for a true fit and featuring a moulded TPU heel cradle as well as a premium leather collar and tongue lining, these boots are the ultimate in comfort and performance. There are three styles within our Catalyst VX Defiant collection, a 10” insulated, 8” insulated and a non-insulated 8” version for warmer days. 

If you could sum up your brand in a sentence, what would it be?

Quality without compromise, Ariat believes in innovation, dedication, balance and possibilities.

Ariat is really well known in equestrian circles- what attributes from the equestrian range make it well suited for country sports?

We are renowned for our innovative and stylish premium footwear and apparel, which is synonymous with the equestrian and country market.  We see riders as athletes and as such technology is at the very core of our business to ensure riders are comfortable both in the saddle and on the ground, it is this technology and knowledge of athletes that has enabled us to develop high performance, comfortable footwear for the country

Ariat Burford Wellies

Ariat- Burford

markets that meets the demands of the countryside terrain.  As well as high performance products we have also been able to incorporate our classic equestrian styling with technology to produce beautiful, classically designed boots that look just at home on the high street as they do at a country show.

What are you most excited about for this year’s event?

We are really excited to be exhibiting for the first time and having the opportunity to get face-to-face with consumers to present our brand to them

Where can visitors find you at the event? Are there any special offers they should know about?

Stand J1069.  We have a fantastic competition running, simply try on a pair of boots to be in with a chance of winning a pair of boots of your choice up to the value of £400

To find out more about Ariat and to see the stunning range of footwear described above, go along to the stand or see Ariat’s website. To find out more about The Game Fair, follow this link.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Mackenzie & George

Mackenzie & GeorgeMackenzie & George – I couldn’t do this kind of series without including them!
I have the absolute privilege of working with Mackenzie & George… which is more than a little useful given my addiction to the company’s hats, brooches, keyrings and leather accessories. But more about that another time!
Mackenzie & George’s stunning products are an essential part of anyone’s country ‘kit’, but more than just looking gorgeous, everything is beautifully made to last. The leather belts are crafted in the company’s Shropshire workshop, the beautiful feather brooches are made by Wendy Goode and are something else… it’s all lovely. What’s more, Chris and Melanie Clarihew who are co-founders, are some of the nicest people you’ll ever meet, and the team are so lovely too. Now, over to Mackenzie & George.

Mackenzie & George Cartridge KeyringStands to see at The Game Fair – Mackenzie & George

How long have you been exhibiting at The Game Fair?
Since 2013, our first full year of doing shows. We started in Rural Crafts and then took the decision to go outside two years ago, and so pleased we did!
Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair?
We are launching our dog collar range so that’s going to be really exciting; it is something we are asked for all of the time, and means we get to meet some gorgeous four legged customers as well!
What’s your newest product? What makes it special?
We’ve got quite a few new pieces at the moment.  Along with the dog collars which are all made in our signature vegetable tanned leathers, and have personalisation or branded shotgun cartridge options, we also have our new solid brass cuffs which we are doing in an exciting range of colours and

Mackenzie & George Wycombe

textures – I completely adore them! Then we also have our new Marlborough belt and clutch, and keyring all featuring our branded M&G solid brass shotgun
cartridge

.

Which product do you expect to be a best seller?
The Wycombe is an everyday classic that has that touch of shooting inspired design, works for men and women and looks beautiful personalised!
If you could sum up Mackenzie & George in a sentence, what would it be?
Timeless design that lasts.
Do you have a typical customer? Or do you find your products have a broad appeal for all ages?
I don’t think we do, I think quality speaks to people of all ages.

Mackenzie & George at The Game Fair

What are you most excited about for this year’s event?
Our dog collar competition! The prosecco stand & seeing all our lovely customers!
Where can visitors find you at the event? Are there any special offers they should know about?
You’ll find us on stand F704.  Yes! We will have show discounts, lucky dip scratch cards
with each purchase, an amazing dog competition AND a free glass of bubbly – what more could you ask for?
Find out more about Mackenzie & George here, and find out more about The Game Fair here.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Albion England

Albion England LogoHave you heard of Albion England? When I started in this industry, Albion was really well known for exceptional quality saddlery. Many of the top horses strutted their stuff in Albion saddles and bridles. And I can still remember the much adored Albion dressage saddle in the tack room on the event yard I used to work at. It was a thing of beauty and was so nice to ride in. Even if the horse who owned it wasn’t always the most cooperative, at least you had a comfortable seat!

Albion is now more actively promoting other strings to its leather bow. In recent years, Albion has rebranded as Albion England and has started to make a serious dent in the country lifestyle and shooting scene too.

This leads me nicely to The Game Fair. I’m really excited to be going to The Game Fair this year (and was delighted to write a guest blog too), and as I was scrolling down the exhibitor list, I found a number of stands I was really excited to go and visit… and one was Albion England.

I saw the stand at Badminton Horse Trials and meant to go back and have a look around as it looked absolutely stunning. I did also want to go and sniff the candles (I know I’m quirky, but the names sound divine!) and, also, if you’re horsey, there’s something about the smell of good quality leather. Don’t you think?! Anyway, I digress. When I saw Albion England were on the The Game Fair’s exhibitor list, I took the opportunity to catch up with the team about what we can expect to Albion England The Game Fairsee at the event… over to Albion England.

Stands to see at The Game Fair – Albion England

  • How long have you been exhibiting at The Game Fair?

6 years

  • Which product are you most excited to show the people visiting The Game Fair?

The Albion Sporting Classic Collection – our most prestigious collection and the one we have become known for. Not only is this collection visually stunning, but also of uncompromising quality. The pieces are built to last for generations and this is demonstrated by the outstanding feedback we receive from customers.

  • What’s your newest product? What makes it special?

We are super excited to be launching an all new sporting collection, including a leather gun slip, cartridge bag and cartridge pouch, at this year’s Game Fair. The new cartridge pouch is something we have had many requests for and we are delighted to be bringing this to market for the very first time at this year’s event. This simple yet practical piece is made from a beautiful full gain Italian leather, lined in suede and will no doubt be a stand out piece for The Game Fair.

  • If you could sum up Albion England in a sentence, what would it be?

An array of beautifully handcrafted country lifestyle products, blending artisan craftsmanship with revolutionary innovation and state-of-the-art technology.

  • Your rebrand is incredibly smart and marries the lifestyle, equestrian and shooting elements of your business together in one place… why did you decide to do this? Do you feel there’s a strong cross over in the different areas?

Albion England The Game FairAdding a complementing range of lifestyle and sporting lines is the natural way forward for us and the country lifestyle community have embraced our ever-evolving collections, just as they have so warmly with Albion Equestrian, which has acquired an incredible standing over its 33 year history. Albion England continues to be heavily committed to its equestrian roots, while our evolution now includes the creation of an equality premium portfolio of luxurious leather accessories. Collections are especially designed for the shooting and country lifestyle fraternity, with every product boasting the distinguished effortless style and extraordinary efficacy that is synonymous with Albion.

  • Where can visitors find you at the event?

Stand Number A109 – near the Gunmakers Pub

  • Are there any special offers they should know about?

We will be offering free embossing and complimentary Prosecco to our guests while they wait on our beautifully new redesigned stand. Personalisation is available across an wide range of our leather goods, making them the perfect present for the country sporting aficionado.

Find out more about Albion England here, and find out more about The Game Fair here.