Know your Customers for Green Tech Success

Know Your Customer for Green Tech Success

Got a Clean Tech Business?

If so, you’re in luck! According to TechNavio, the industry is expected to grow by $95 million from 2022-2027 as shown in this chart:

Clean Tech Market Outlook

Image: Outlook for Clean Tech | TechNavio

However, lots of growth means lots of competition. And, lots of competition means you need to make every marketing dollar count. That requires a razor-sharp marketing strategy honed in on your perfect customer.


So, Let’s Talk About Customers

Specifically, your customers. And why targeting the right customer for you leads to success.

One company that has nailed customer-centric marketing is Rivian, the U.S.  based electric truck and SUV manufacturer. In keeping with their mission ‘to keep the world adventurous together,’ they avoided marketing to a generic ‘green’ audience and instead pursued two demographics: The Adventure Enthusiast for their R1T electric truck and The Adventure Family for their R1S SUV.

Because they know these customers so well, Rivian can offer audience-specific innovations, such as Gear Tunnel and Storage compartments for their trucks and a Camp Kitchen Package for the family SUV. Customers can also purchase specialty accessories and equipment curated specifically for them through a subscription service.

And to feed future product enhancements, Rivian sponsors community events, forums and online platforms to keep the feedback loop going.

All of this customer engagement drives high customer satisfaction.

But what about your company? How do you follow the Rivian model?

Know Your Greens: Laser Focus on the Right Customers for You

You may already have a general idea of who you are targeting. But now is the time to level up your impact. It starts with a precise understanding of your green customers.

Enter personas, which are fictional characters representing the customers who would be most interested in your product or service. Specifically, we use personas to:

  • Promote empathy
    • Remember, you are not your customer. While you have your own unique perspective, your target customer may have a different point of view or is motivated by other factors.
  • Understand customer needs, experiences, behaviors and goals
  • Decide what products and features to prioritize
    • And feed your product roadmap
  • Better target advertising and marketing dollars
    • And focus on who actually benefits most
  • Keep your target customer front of mind

Start with Empathy

I can hear you now: “I want one! Show me how to create my own persona!”

Here are the steps that 3Create follows, again using Rivian as an example:

  • Gather data about your existing and future customers. This could take the form of direct interviews, surveys, web analytics, customer care staff, and stakeholders. Mine your own data to unlock even more insights.
  • Determine the number of personas to create. Ideally, just one is best, but create a persona for each major customer group if there are major differences. For example, Rivian would have two personas – one for their trucks and one for their SUVs.
  • Start documenting. Note demographics (age, gender, location, qualifications, occupation, income, etc.), goals and values. (ChatGPT can help here.) Be very explicit about the context that you are exploring.

For example, Rivian might do an exercise around Doug, a 38-year-old single man, working in the tech industry who loves to camp and hike. Doug is in the initial stages of looking for a new electric vehicle.

  • Walk a mile in their shoes. This is the fun part! Dig deep into your acting skills and channel your persona. Start listing what Doug is thinking and feeling as he’s researching his purchase. What is he hearing from his friends, co-workers, etc.?   What is he saying to them? What is he actually doing? Which social media channels is he using? Note any pain points you think he might encounter, and any opportunities for Rivian that become apparent.

Create Your Green Persona

With the above in hand, it’s easy to develop a simple one-page synopsis of your persona.

Let me introduce Doug, The Adventure Enthusiast

Green Adventure Enthusiast Persona. This is a one page visual that describes the demographics, values and motivations, social media channels and pain points for similar individuals.

As you can see, in one visual, you get an indication of Doug’s:

  • General demographics
  • Context in his customer journey
  • Values and motivations
  • Social media hangouts
  • Challenges and pain points
  • Products and features that would appeal to him

This is a great starting point in understanding your customer. It’s also a wonderful vehicle (get it?) for feeding your content plan and product roadmap.

If you want to dig deeper into your customer, I would suggest completing a customer journey map that documents your customer’s actions as they progress from awareness to advocacy. But that’s a blog for another day.

Contact 3Create with any comments or questions.

Please note: The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are solely my own and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Rivian. Additionally, I have not received any compensation or incentive from Rivian for mentioning them in this post. Any examples used involving Rivian are for illustrative purposes only and do not imply any affiliation or endorsement.



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