How to Find Your Ideal Customer Profile

How great would it be if you simply had a blueprint that would identify the most high-income customers while helping you cultivate them into long-term partners?

That's the power of a finely tuned Ideal Customer Profile (ICP).

However, so many startups fail by casting too wide a net, only to catch low-quality leads that drain resources rather than boost growth.

It's time to fix that.

In this episode of The B2B Revenue Executive Experience, Carlos Nouche is joined by Eric Holmen, Former CEO of Splash, to share his expertise on how to clearly identify ICP.

Step-by-Step Guide to Identify Your Ideal Customer Profile

1. Understand the Essence of ICP

Eric breaks down a common misconception in sales that an ICP is just about demographics or industry.

He depicts it as a customer for whom your product feels custom-made.

"In reality, what you're looking for, particularly in businesses that have recurring revenue, is a customer who continues to buy and expand for years and years and years. And that's a different thing than how salespeople or sales management think about an ICP."

2. Define Your ICP

Remember these 3 simple steps:

  1. Gather Data: Look at your best customer who not only bought your product but also embraced the following upgrades and spread the word. What common characteristics do they share?
  2. Segment and Focus: Choose specific attributes that define your ICP, such as business size, industry type, customer needs, and purchasing behavior. Eric advises, "I think you need to get as specific as you possibly can and get more specific over time."
  3. Refine Constantly: Leverage customer feedback, especially from those who choose not to renew their contracts, to further narrow down your ICP. This ensures that your sales and marketing efforts remain sharply focused and increasingly effective.

3. Implement Your ICP in Sales Strategy

To effectively prepare sales teams for targeting your ICP, the entire sales pipeline needs to work closely together.

This collaboration starts with marketing, whose role is to ensure they're capturing the right leads with content that speaks directly to the ICP.

Sales Development Representatives (SDRs), who are often young and enthusiastic, can find themselves in the deep end, tasked with conducting more business conversations than anyone else in the company.

Simplify their scripts to focus on a single buyer profile, including their language and specific business needs to allow them to sound like industry experts and create a virtuous cycle of efficient and effective qualification.

4. Scale Your Business with a Clear ICP

While targeting small to mid-sized businesses might be your initial strategy, the ultimate goal could be to scale to enterprise clients.

Eric highlights the importance of adapting to more demanding enterprise requirements like SOC 2 compliance and 24/7 customer support.

"I'm a big proponent of understanding what your requirements are before you start making commitments."

Being selective and strategic about customer acquisition helps ensure that scaling doesn't dilute the quality of your engagements or divert you from your core ICP.

While it helps you scale efficiently, a well-defined ICP also assists in maintaining focus, even as you grow into new markets.

Now that you know how to identify your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), discover the full list of episodes at The B2B Revenue Executive Experience. If you enjoy the show, instructions to rate and review it are found here.

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