Why I Started Stellar Platforms

Why I Started Stellar Platforms

I built the wrong platform for myself, and that’s how this all started.

After years of working with successful authors and coaches, improving or creating their digital infrastructure, it gave me the opportunity to examine how a thought leader builds a successful business on their teachings.

There were a number of similarities. (I call them Cornerstones.) Once I identified what these similarities were, and how the most successful platforms worked, I resolved to make a platform for myself.

I made the wrong platform.

My intentions were noble, at least. I did some really deep soul searching, and I asked myself: how could I have the most positive impact on the world? Not just today, or in ten years, but in a hundred years – how could my work provide the most positive benefit to humanity, one century from now?

I settled on fatherhood.

If I could help men become better fathers, then they would raise better children. Better kids grow up to become better people, and better people make a better world. This was the area I identified as having the maximum impact for my life’s work, so I built a platform around it.

I made a logo, and a brand, and a website for BeTheBetterDad.com. I started blogging about the habits that make me a better father, and I made a free online course, the 5-Day Father Fitness Program. That gave me some customers, which meant I could ask them about the problems they face, and structure my offerings around solving those problems. I made Customer Avatars, and discovered, to my surprise, that I was in no way qualified to help this audience.

The problems that modern dads are facing – divorce, depression, having kids living in separate households – I wasn’t equipped to help them with that. I’ve got no experience with divorce, and I’m not a therapist or a relationship coach – I’m a guy who has a good handle on his habits, and I tried to share some of those.

But what this audience actually needed was not something I could provide.

So I went back to the drawing board. I asked myself, “What am I uniquely good at doing?”

I looked over the entire infrastructure that I created for Father Fitness, and I thought, “I can do that. I can make a platform.”

Stellar Platforms was created so that I can help people with what I do best: create the branding and automation infrastructure that financially supports a thought leader as they grow their audience.

The Four Cornerstones

Like many polymaths, I’m not an expert in any one thing, but I have a modest level of mastery in some very different things. It turns out this variety of skills is especially useful for the 4 Cornerstones of a Stellar Platform.

  • My theatrical training gave me an artistic flair in creating characters, which I use when making Customer Avatars.
  • My sales training has given me the psychological understanding of why people buy, which I use to make Sales Funnels.
  • My time as a writer gave me the ability to produce and disseminate ideas clearly, which is a core component of Content Marketing.
  • My freelance web design business taught me how to integrate complicated platforms together, which is essential for eCommerce.

I never thought these separate areas of my interests would combine anywhere. I only pursued the interests that appealed to me most at the time. Now I have the opportunity to use each of these areas of mastery as a Cornerstone to my own Stellar Platform. That’s why I started this business.

Stellar Platforms are for Rising Stars.

The kinds of people who need these four Cornerstones are the thought leaders and authors who have a message, and have an audience, but they don’t yet have a platform to enable them to make a living by simply spreading their message.

If you are one of the Illuminators of Tomorrow, let’s work together.

How To Make a Customer Avatar

How To Make a Customer Avatar

To sell more of your product, reach a bigger audience, and grow your list, the single most effective thing you can learn is how to make a Customer Avatar. Having a good Customer Avatar will give you a near-superhuman ability to communicate powerfully with the people who are most likely to become your customers.

Note: A Customer Avatar is also often called an Ideal Client Profile, or a Buyer Persona. In this article I will use the term ‘Customer Avatar’ because it sounds much cooler.

Let’s face it: not every customer is right for your business. Your message can resonate really well with some types of people, but not with all of them.

Having a Customer Avatar allows you to identify the specific characteristics of people who like to buy what you’re selling. You can make your own Customer Avatars by following these 5 simple steps:

Customer Avatar Step 1

Find a template

A Customer Avatar Template is a document with blank spaces for you to fill in the defining characteristics of your ideal client. These templates are very useful, and I recommend you try a few different ones. You might end up liking one, but then find that another has better questions, or a better layout.

Here are three places to find Customer Avatar Templates:

If you use iWork’s Pages, you can use our own template for making Customer Avatars here:

Customer Avatar Step 2

Prepare your questions

There are lots (and lots) of questions you can ask while building your Customer Avatar. Read through the links above, and you’ll find dozens to choose from. (Be sure and use the “But no one else would” trick in the Digital Marketer post.)

We recommend you read through the templates and articles above, and collect a list of questions that you will ask about each one of Customer Avatars.

Some of them will be redundant, and that’s okay. Asking the same questions over and over forces your brain to dig deeper, to look past superficial answers, and discover something new. Something clear. Something definitive. That’s what you’re looking for with these questions, is tiny little characteristics that define this type of person.

Developing that list of questions will make you think how to get into your customers’ minds, and that’s a useful exercise. Don’t skip it. There is a full list of questions that you can use in the DIY Customer Avatar Creation Kit at the end of this article.

Customer Avatar Step 3

Set the space to work

What you are planning to do is some of the most fundamental, introspective work you will undertake this year. This work could have dramatic positive results for your business. So, don’t throw it together on your lunch hour. Set the space. Decide for yourself:

  • Where will you physically do this work? At your normal desk, or somewhere else?
  • What time of day is best for you to do it?
  • What kind of music, beverages, and/or snacks do you want to have available?
  • Would it be better to do this alone, or with a partner?
  • Will you print the templates, and fill them out by hand? Or type your answers into a computer?
  • What day will you do this work?

Answer these questions thoughtfully. That’s what this exercise is, after all – it’s a series of questions answered thoughtfully. Start off right by asking yourself how to best set yourself up for success.

Customer Avatar Step 4

Answer the questions

You’re at the appointed time and place. You have all of your materials. The rest of the world is put on pause for an hour or more. Do the work.

While you are here, think of your best customers. Think of who they are, why they came to you, and in a hazy, non-distinct way, think about the type of person that person is like. Think about someone famous that you would love to work with. Don’t define these people in your work, define the group to which these people belong.

Customer Avatar Step 5

Edit and review with friends

Your first draft of your Customer Avatars are just that – your first draft. Show them to colleagues, friends, and even competitors, and ask them for feedback. You will likely have a few surprising responses that make you say, “I can’t believe I didn’t think of that!” This feedback is just as important as the work you put into it, and you can see dramatically positive results in your business if you are open to receiving feedback from others.

Revise your Customer Avatars regularly. As you grow with your business, you will learn more about the people you serve. Incorporate that knowledge into these foundational documents, and your business will continue to improve.

Use the DIY Customer Avatar Creation Kit

If you’d like a step-by-step guided process to make your own Customer Avatars, try the DIY Customer Avatar Creation Kit:

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