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10 things to consider when trying to create an ideal customer profile

10 Things To Consider When Trying To Create an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

By persuading someone to purchase your goods or service, you've successfully created a customer. Understanding the people whose lives you want to improve on a deeper level is the only way to accomplish this goal. The success of a company's product and brand is determined by how well it understands its target market. A company that has a stronger relationship with its customers than competitors will prevail.

To draw in, convert, and delight new customers, you need time, resources, and personnel. And as a shrewd professional, you want to focus on prospects who will yield the greatest profit. Not everyone needs to be reached by marketing.

Ideal Customer Profile Framework

The ICP framework not only helps new customers feel valued, supported, and a part of your community long after the sale, but it also makes sure that your current and best customers are a good long-term fit. You can solve your prospects' problems both now and in the future if you are familiar with your ICP.

Definition of an Ideal Customer Profile (Buyer Persona)

An ICP is a set of firmographic and behavioral traits that identify the most important clients for a business. The sales and marketing teams of an organization can develop quantifiable strategies to convert these top customers by developing a general profile of the best accounts within the organization.

Your brand story, strategic messaging, customer acquisition strategy, and content strategy are all built on the ICP template. Because of this, the first step in every marketing playbook and go-to-market strategy plan should be to conduct a thorough market analysis, define and create an ICP, and gain a comprehensive understanding of your ideal customer.

A summary of the ideal client profile is as follows:

-Having the most discomfort (severity)

-Repeatedly feels the pain (frequency)

-Searching for a solution vigorously (urgency)

-Having a budget to cover the cost of a fix (fit)

-Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is less than Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) | CAC CLV

Things To Consider When You Create An Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

1: Zero In On Target Organization

You must concentrate on the size of the company you sell to. Decision-making is concentrated among fewer people in smaller businesses. Budgets are tighter. Executives are only able to concentrate on a select few top issues and problems.

Decision-making is dispersed across numerous departments and managers in larger organizations. Due to the fact that numerous organizational stakeholders have an impact on the purchasing decision, the sales cycle is typically longer. Budgets are typically larger.

The roles and job titles of the people most likely to use or purchase your good or service may be well known to you. Let's take the example of marketing VPs as your target audience. No two marketing vice presidents share the same set of issues and pursuits. Depending on their company's size, revenue, and industry, these issues and objectives may differ significantly.

You might be surprised at how differently two marketing managers with the same exact title will respond when asked what they do. Even those with identical job titles may have entirely different duties, objectives, measures, teams, and budgets. People with completely different titles may concurrently hold the same duties.

For instance, a VP of Marketing at a small bootstrapped startup frequently handles practically all aspects of marketing, including content creation, nurturing emails, website updates, PR, and paid advertisements. It's difficult for a small startup to consistently publish excellent content.

With a sizable budget and likely a team devoted to content marketing, a VP of Marketing for a company with more than 500 employees is less concerned about content creation. Driving leads from larger companies with larger budgets may be this VP's more urgent concern.

Beginning with an overview of the businesses where your current clients are located, consider the following factors:

a) Number of employees

b) Company Revenue

c) Industry or vertical

d) Location.

Analyze some of your potential customers as well as your current clientele.

2: Customer Characteristics

We must now pay closer attention to the specific individuals within your target organizations, including those who will use the technology and those who will make purchasing decisions. It's important to note that dealing with multiple stakeholders is common in B2B sales.

While an economic buyer or an end-user is typically your type of customer, other influencers may either obstruct or facilitate the sale. Everyone who will be impacted by your product or service should be outlined and given a profile. Consider the decision-makers and end-users profiles first.

a) Title: Take note of the decision-makers and end-users typical job titles.

b) Function: Identify the organizational role that decision-makers and end users typically hold or are in charge of.

c) Team size: Check the number of direct reports and the teams' sizes for the decision-makers and end users.

d) Their tech stack collection

e) Customer role in the buying process

3: Customer Daily Process

It's time to delve deeper into your target customer's typical day now that you have a general idea of who they are and what their company does. This entails being aware of and comprehending both their objectives and difficulties, as well as their typical tasks and responsibilities. When trying to define your ideal customer do not ignore this phase like other marketing and sales experts.

On the other hand, by learning how your customers organize their days, you can find ways to make their lives better and decide what features to include in your upcoming release. Expecting the customer to describe their biggest issue and how you should address it is unrealistic.

"If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses," said Henry Ford once. That hardly ever occurs. You should learn from how they function and then devise a solution to the issues you encounter. Customers frequently perform certain tasks in a routine manner without realizing that their method is flawed.

Always keep in mind that a customer's issues are context-specific. By being aware of the context, you can:

  • Create products that offer your clients greater value and are easier

    to integrate into their daily routines.

  • More product objections to overcome

Knowing how your customers live their lives can help you come up with new product features that will grow your customer base or even open up new markets.

The horizontal and vertical expansions of your offering are the two most popular strategies. When you build new products or services for other vertical markets and industries, you are engaging in horizontal product expansion. Building more features for your existing customers and the industry (or industries) you target is known as vertical expansion.

Due to the fact that you are alleviating additional problems for your current customers, one could argue that vertical expansion is a more effective and efficient way to expand. By doing this, your product or service becomes indispensable and very challenging to replace by competitors.

Additionally, developing new capabilities for current customers is more cost-effective in terms of acquiring new customers. Selling to a client who is familiar with your business and has used your product or service will always be less expensive. And finally, one of the best ways to stand out is to position your product or service as a niche solution for a particular market or sector.

4: External Market Forces or the Environment

It's useful to assess the market conditions and trends that bring changes from outside the company as you learn about your target organizations, buyers, and end-users. No business runs in a vacuum. A market's strength can cause the industry to undergo tectonic shifts. Just a few revolutionary market changes come to mind: the internet, smartphones, 3G/4G/5G, and blockchain.

Economic, technological, and social forces are the three main factors that affect a market, according to "Pitch Anything" author Oren Klaff. Your responsibility includes being informed of and, in some cases, educating your customers about the economic, technological, and social forces that have the power to profoundly alter their lives.

5: The Customer Acquisition Process

Making your customers want your good or service is insufficient. You must make it simple to purchase your offering. As important as designing the actual product or service is designing a frictionless purchasing experience. The simpler it is for a customer to purchase your good or service, the happier they are with your business and what you have to offer.

The overall customer experience is greatly influenced by the buying process. Think about if you were required to fill out a form and then wait for a salesperson to give you a demo before you could buy Slack. It's a ridiculous procedure that would have slowed Slack's expansion. Slack is open for anyone to try. The business reduced a lot of friction in the buyers journey.

By giving your buyer champion content that enables him to lead the purchase through various stakeholders in his organization when you are selling to a larger organization, you can almost always shorten your sales cycle.

6: Pain or Problem

Buyers are more driven to find a solution the more pain they are experiencing. We can all relate to situations in the workplace where the issue was intolerable and a fix was required immediately. In these situations, we turn to the internet, ask our friends for advice, or recall brands and products that can assist us in resolving our pressing problem.

Because of this, selling is inherently simpler when there are enough pain points or the problem you are solving for buyers is significant enough. It all comes down to proving to customers that your business is an industry authority and that your strategy and solution are the ones that will best meet their needs.

The sales process becomes more difficult when the problem isn't obvious or isn't painful enough because you have to sell the problem first. Buyers must be convinced that the issue is serious, urgent, or frequently occurring enough to warrant attention. Sell using the pain points, never the product.

7: Personal Values vs. Business Values

B2B purchasing decisions frequently involve complex considerations. On the one hand, an organization's real problems must be resolved by your product or service. On the other hand, it must satisfy the needs of the decision-makers.

When you consider that several people are involved in making the decision and that their personal needs are typically different, it becomes even more complicated.

You should describe how customers perceive both their business and personal values when creating an ideal customer profile. Pay close attention to how they describe the advantages offered by your product or service and the additional benefits they derive from it.

Because they frequently rely on metrics, somewhat objective reasoning, and logic, business values are simple to assess. Personal values are much more difficult to define and articulate. You should cultivate empathy for your customers as a result.

8: Client Empathy

We frequently see the B2B sales process as a cold examination of the needs, values, and objectives of the customer. We overlook the fact that humans buy products.

We will also be dealing with feelings and emotions that influence purchasing decisions whenever people are involved. When it comes to making decisions, we are not as logical as we might think.

Empathy promotes trust among your clients. It demonstrates that your objective is to genuinely improve their lives, not just to sell them something.

Understanding what your customers say, think, feel, and do will help you develop empathy as you create your ideal customer profile. Knowing what they say, believe, feel, and act on allows you to determine how to influence them to take action or make a purchase.

9: Observe, Read, and Follow

We draw some of our opinions from experience and some from absorbing the available industry knowledge. Understanding where your target customers get their information is a key component of getting to know them. You will have a better understanding of the trends that matter to your customers and the issues that are currently on their minds thanks to the resources that drive shared industry knowledge.

10. Where Do You See Your Clients 5 Years From Now?

According to Peter Drucker, every company's goal is to create customers. He didn't say "identify" or "find" customers; he said "create" them. Great businesses change their customers' thoughts, behaviors, and emotions in addition to relieving their problems. Successful products make a meaningful difference in the lives of consumers. Being forward-thinking is the best way to attract customers and improve their quality of life.

Outline precisely how you want them to behave, think, and feel like your customers as you conduct research on your ideal clients. How would you like to alter their lives? What modifications will your product or service make to their lives? How will the use of your product or service alter the behaviors of your customers?


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