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The Experience Formula

5 Super Simple Ways to Learn Your Tribe’s Language and Discover What They Really Want

Many people make the mistake of thinking their business is all about them. But the truth is that your business happens at the intersection of you and your audience.

You can’t have a thriving business unless you give people what they want and market your solution in a way that inspires them to say yes.

When you can identity and speak directly to your tribe’s wants, needs, desires, aspirations and challenges, they’ll feel like you really “get them”.

So how do you crack the code on your marketing and ensure that you’re serving a real need in the marketplace?

Photo by Alejandro Escamilla

It’s simple.

You start by listening. By understanding your tribe on a deep level.

Because once you really know your clients, you’ll understand who they are, how they speak, what they’re thinking, what they want, what’s stopping them from pursuing what they want, and even why they want what they want. This deep clarity and understanding will form the basis of everything you say, write and do in your business – from your programs and services to your emails and social media posts.

You’ll never feel stuck or tongue-tied again.

You’ll know exactly what to say in any situation, because you know exactly who you’re talking to, you can see them in your minds eye and hear their inner dialogue.

You know where they are, what they’re going through and where they want to be.

Imagine the power in that.

Really listening to and knowing your ideal client is more important than any marketing tactic you could learn.

That’s why I wanted to give you a framework for what to listen for so you can tune out all the noise and find a clear signal on what your tribe really wants:

1. Carefully Choose Who You Listen To

The only danger in listening is tuning in to the wrong people and letting their advice lead you astray.

Like a radio, you only want to dial in to the people that matter and they fall into just 3 camps: your ideal clients, whether or not you’re already working with them, people with substantial firsthand knowledge or experience with your ideal clients, and people you’re paying for advice (like me).

The temptation is to ask your friends and family or people you know and respect, but they may not be qualified to give you meaningful feedback in this area.

2. Look for Patterns

There are always going to be crazies out there or people who see the world through their own rose colored glasses. Their opinions seem to come out of left field.

If anything seems off-base to you, just ignore it and move on. Don’t let any single person’s advice or criticism derail you. Chances are they’re sitting on an unfulfilled dream or just do things a little differently.

Instead, look for the trends and patterns. The words, views and sentiments that crop up over and over again. Those are the ones with truth. And those are the ones you want to base your business on.

3. Listen for Specific Problems

All business is about solving problems. If you want more clients, listen to their problems, frustrations and challenges. Ask them what’s getting in their way of achieving a specific outcome, what’s stopping them from doing what they want, what’s the sticking point.

Then, listen to the specific language they use to describe their problems. People love to talk about their problems and, if you listen closely, they’ll tell you exactly what’s up.


???????????????????????????????????????????????4. Find Your Clients’ Buying Triggers

As humans, we’re more alike then we are different and this is especially true about our deepest motivations and desires. The truth is, there really are only a handful of reasons why buy anything.

I call these “desire markets” because they reveal the real reason people buy from you. It helps to know which of these triggers or desire markets are strongest for your audience around your topic or area of expertise:

  •  make money / save money
  • save time / avoid effort
  • eliminate pain / improve health
  • increase happiness
  • have fun / adventure
  • feel safe and secure
  • find success / realize potential
  • gain praise / respect / acknowledgement
  • feel liked or loved / be popular
  • join a group or community
  • give back / make a contribution / be a part of something bigger

Sound familiar? I bet you’ve seen these reasons in just about every piece of marketing you’ve ever encountered.

Take a moment now to figure out which of these triggers relate to your products or services. If you’re not sure, make it a point to listen to the meanings and emotions behind what your clients are saying so you can start to hone in on this and figure out the real reason your clients want your stuff.


5. Be Open

This sounds obvious, but you’d be amazed how often people ask questions without being wiling to hear the answer. Instead of assuming you already know what your clients want and looking for confirmation on what you’ve already created, really take a step back and listen with an open heart and an open mind.

If you ask the right questions (check out my blog post on the 8 Top Market Research Questions), your clients will tell you exactly where they are, what they want and what you need to say and do to attract them as a client.

Once you really hear them, not only will you be able to market to them effectively, but you’ll be able to serve them at a deeper level and get them fired up and motivated.


Really listening to and knowing your ideal client is more important than any marketing tactic you could learn. The foundation of any successful long-term business is a deep, ongoing relationship with your clients.

Once you dial in at this level and fine-tune your marketing message so it speaks directly to your ideal client’s soul, you’ll never again have to worry about money. Or feel like you’re not making a difference with your message.

The first step in creating that blockbuster product or service is asking your tribe what they want and giving it to them… Simple, right?

Love it? Hate it? Let me know...

  1. Jupiter Jim Avatar
    Jupiter Jim


    Yes, it is So Important to “know your audience”!. The best thing you said was to LISTEN after you ask the question!!! It is so easy to go through the motions of asking the question and then just picking out the answers that conform to your preformed opinion and continuing to do what you always do!!!

    Also, be careful who you listen to is also great advice! Listen to your ideal clients. Listen to experts in their field. People with a proven track record (like you!). Don’t listen to someone who’s opinion on a product or service is based on ONE bad experience!

    Thanks for sharing and once again, thanks for the GREAT SuperHero Summit!!!!

    ~ Jupiter Jim

    1. Marisa Murgatroyd Avatar
      Marisa Murgatroyd

      Great takeaways, Jim! Listening is a skill that needs to be developed just like all the other skills in business… as you say, it’s not as simple as asking a question to validate what you want to hear.

  2. Dane Avatar

    I clicked “like”, but do not see access to the “21 Essential Tactics . . . ”

    I like reading your stuff, Marisa.

    1. Marisa Murgatroyd Avatar
      Marisa Murgatroyd

      Dane – Sorry you had trouble. You have to click another button to download the book after you click like. I’ve asked my support team to email that to you on Monday.

  3. Lora Avatar

    As always Marisa, you’re spot on and fabulous.

    1. Marisa Murgatroyd Avatar
      Marisa Murgatroyd

      Thanks Lora!

  4. Nick Avatar

    Professional for 40 years and (very) part time wellness coach. No marketing just word of mouth. Now about to retire and want to build a coaching business and want to learn best ways to interface and “talk with” potential clients. Can you help?

    1. murray gray Avatar
      murray gray

      Hi Nick – check out the free training Marisa did yesterday on exactly this topic:

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