The Unicorn Customer: Setting the Standard

The unicorn customer might not exist, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't work for them!

What does your perfect customer look like? What sort of customer would walk into your business and make your day? This is the sort of customer that we all dream of, the impossibly easy customer who not only spends plenty of money, but is easy to help out. The unicorn customer. The ideal customer, the one we are all looking for.

Who is the unicorn customer?

In marketing, we use buyer and customer personas to represent the would-be targets of marketing campaigns. These are people that the department is charged with winning over. They are carefully researched and constructed to portray not the ideal customer, but the realistic ones.

Unicorn customers, like unicorn anythings really, are the ideal. They’re the customers who are easy to service, make plenty of purchases, and come back regularly. They’re advocates for the brand and products, and are more than loyal. They’re the customers we all want, the ones you can always count on.

If you worked in the automotive industry, for example, your ideal customer might be the one who has no finance issues and wants a brand new car every year, upgrading their old one consistently.

Unfortunately, unicorns are rare – or nonexistent, depending on your point of view. They’re castles in the sky that we look for because what’s life without a little bit of magic?

Why discuss them then?

Unicorns might be mythical creatures, but customers certainly aren’t. What’s wrong with daydreaming? Nothing. In fact, knowing who your ideal customer is will help you develop strategies to create them.

Creating the Unicorn Customer

Before you start thinking about kidnapping your favourite regulars and stitching unicorn horns into their foreheads let’s pause for a minute – that’s not what I mean, and I’m pretty sure it’s not legal.

Knowing what a business’ ideal customer looks like means that strategies can be implemented to strive towards them. We’ve established that a unicorn customer is an ideal, a idyllic thing that doesn’t necessarily exist, but it should always be worked towards. Treating customers as though they are your ideal customer will make them feel as special as unicorns really are.

In other words, don’t think of a unicorn customer as an actual customer – think of them as a standard. A Unicorn Standard, as it were.

The Unicorn Standard

Over the course of the articles in this series, we’ve discovered some very basic truths. At the end of the day, they all come down to this: The Unicorn Standard. All of the types of customers we’ve discussed have things in common, and this concept covers all those things. In essence, there’s one fundamental rule: the customer is right. More than that, the customer is to be treated with full honours.

By making it clear to customer service staff that all customers should be treated as though they are the ideal customer, will generate a powerful surge in any customer service department. It’s about treating your customers the way they should be treated, not dependent on who they are or what kind of customer they prove to be: treat them right, and they’ll do right by you.