How to determine when your dream clients are online.

This is part four in a five part series about identifying your target audience. Read the first post on identifying their career & lifestyle here, second post about defining their interests here & third post about how to find out where they are hanging out online here.

If you have read & completed the "homework" in the first three posts, then you know who you want to be buying your products. You know exactly who your dream client is, what they like, what type of big business marketing can influence their purchasing habits, and you've figured out what sort of websites they hang out on. 

Knowing when your dream clients are online gives you a powerful upperhand on the market - you can cater your social media postings & paid ads to exactly the right time for maximum exposure, meaning that you get better results with less effort - You can spend less time at a computer & more time making awesome things! 

Using the worksheet below, fill in the times for each part of the day to the best of your knowledge about your dream client. Do not pull numbers from your current statistics - you are trying to determine when your dream clients will be online to maximize future exposure of your shop. While your current clients are incredibly valuable, maximizing your marketing to your dream client means increased exposure to people who are the most likely to buy & share your products with others, meaning more sales. 

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Note: Even if your dream clients don't have a day job or go to school, try to use this work sheet to pen in what they would be doing through the day & evening - if they are stay at home moms, they are probably getting kids up, fed, dressed, ready for school, cleaning house, doing laundry, running errands and so forth. Use this worksheet however you need to outline the day of your dream client! 

First things first, when does your dream client wake up? What is the first thing they do after they wake up? Check Instagram? Read their emails? Brew coffee & take a shower? Get the kids up and ready for school? Going for a job? Heading to the gym?

Know when they wake up & their morning routine gives you insight on when to post content that will resonate with their routine - for instance, if your dream client is a mom who wakes up around 7am & rushes around getting the kids ready for school and on the bus, posting a product photo on Instagram at as your first post doesn't make much sense. However, if you post a picture of your coffee & ask if any other moms out there can relate around 8am, you're bound to get a much better response to your content. If the first thing they do is roll over and check their emails, maybe a newsletter that goes out first thing in the morning to give them some happy content to wake up to would be a good way to reach them. Make sense? 

Another example - say your dream client is a young professional who works in an office in the city and has to be at work by 8am. Odds are they aren't checking social media right out of bed - they brewing coffee, making breakfast, showering, getting dressed, finishing up last minute projects and getting out the door. If your dream clients are hustling to get work done in the morning, don't waste that time marketing to empty air.

Knowing when they leave for work, school or are getting the kiddos off to school is equally important - if your dream clients have a day job or go to school are in transit & getting started on their day between 8-10am, that means you can better utilize that time to set up a creative morning routine for yourself than plastered to your computer trying to reach people who aren't there. 

*Bonus tip: If your dream client spends a lot of time jogging, at the gym or in transit in the mornings, you could consider setting up playlists on Spotify & sharing them with your audience, or maybe consider a podcast talking about topics that you & your dream clients have in common. (Abby Glassenberg has a wonderful podcast that speaks directly to her dream clients & allows her to connect with them even when they are on the go.)

Lunch time, baby! That sweet spot when most people finally sit down, whip out their phone & start to catch up on all the goodness they missed this morning. It's your chance to get noticed, so make it good. Lunch time is prime time, and you want to curate content for this period that is valuable - most people have limited time to sit down for lunch, so strategize where they will be spending that time online & how to make your content relevant & interesting to them.

Lunch time doesn't just mean 12pm - really think about when your dream clients are online, what their day looks like. If they get up at 6am, odds are they eat lunch earlier than noon. If they are a stay at home mom, "lunch" would most likely be naptime, that sweet - & brief - moment of respite when moms can curl up with a snack & check social media. Again, you are operating on limited time at the middle of the day, so make your content king. Make it something that is quick & easy to take in & respond to, even if it's a like or one word response to a question like "What's your favorite color?" that you can then use to better your products. 

Knowing when they get off work/school or start picking kids up from school is as important as knowing when they're busy in the mornings - it's dead time. Your dream clients are not online right now, so you shouldn't be either - go make stuff! Your dream clients are busy hustling and shuffling around! 

After the afternoon chaos, what are your dream clients up to? Try to think of 3-4 things that probably happens in their life in the afternoons: Gym, grocery store, coffee with friends, homework, soccer, ballet, karate, choir & gymnastics for the kids? Odds are, their afternoon is pretty full right up until dinner time. However, knowing what your dream clients are getting into is vital - you can use this information to curate content that your dream clients will respond well to - do they have a little ballerina? I bet they would love to see pictures of your darling little ballerina, too, if you have one! 

And then there's dinner, then there is that sweet, sweet spot where you have a chance to catch them online - that is, if they aren't lining up kids for showers, doing laundry from the day, packing lunches for the next day, and so on. If your dream client is a mom, odds are they stay busy right up until those kiddos are in bed - and your best chance to reach them is then. Probably between 7-9 pm, when they are unwinding with a glass of wine, their favorite TV show & social media. If your dream client is a college student, are they in evening classes? What time are they most likely to be wrapping up for the day and hanging out online? If your dream client is a young single professional, they are probably online more in the evening, giving you a larger window to get your content to them. 

Goodnight, dream clients. When you see your dream clients heading to bed for the night - you should too. Or at least stop posting on social media, because they aren't there. Market smarter, not harder - use your answers & best judgement from identifying your dream client to know when they are online, and when they aren't - and when they aren't online, get off the computer. Use your time better to make awesome things & take care of yourself! As makers, we feel the need to be eternally connected, to see our stats update in real time & overshare on social media, shouting to everyone & hoping someone hears us. No more. Use the information from this series to better utilize your time, to reach people more likely to purchase, and to spend more time doing what you love - making & creating. 

*Beyond the daily routine, think long term & seasonal schedules for your dream clients. In summer, many people are on vacation, traveling, visiting with family, at the pool, park or zoo - so you can relax your marketing efforts a bit if you find that your dream clients are busy jetsetting to Disneyland and spending their summer by the pool during the day with the kids. During the beginning & finals/end of school term time, college students (and parents) are spending a significant amount less time online, so use this time wisely to build up inventory. 

Next week, we will have the final installment in this series - how to approach your dream clients & build organic connections with them. 

Using the information from above, what do you think is the best times for you to post & reach your dream clients? Experiment around these time frames for a few months & see if you get better results on social media than your previous schedule.  

Tell us about your dream client's day in the comments. 


  1. My dream client wakes around 6:30, and checks social media updates while easing into the morning. She has a cup of coffee, and heads to work around 8am, lunching just after noon. After leaving work, she either heads out for drinks with friends, or heads home to play with the pets.
    I really love this series. Its helping me a lot to find direction for my shop!

  2. After talking things out on the SE Chat today, it really made me think not only about the time of day I'm posting things, but which platform my dream client might be on at the time! This series is awesome for making my brain work! >_<

  3. Thanks for another helpful post Cody! Your examples really gave me a lot of great ideas about my dream clients, and I've noticed this in real time as well, especially on Instagram with how many likes similar pictures will get depending on the time posted. I was instinctively starting my social media posts a bit later in the morning because I knew I was usually rushing off to work in the mornings and not checking social media until a quick mid morning break, which I guess I kind of got lucky on because I generally think of my dream client as pretty similar to myself, only with much cooler social lives (for them : ). I have also heard that millennials check social media pretty often throughout the day, maybe even random bathroom breaks, which is why I think my mid afternoon posts might do ok as well, to catch those people, and then those who get all caught up after work.