An Ideal Customer Profile, also known as an ICP, is a set of characteristics which distinguish your most valuable customers. Not every lead is worth pursuing and an ICP helps you sort the good from the bad.
Every sales team is working with a limited amount of time. Prospecting with an ICP will save you time and earn you a higher ROI. Leads that fit your Ideal Customer Profile are more than likely to be a good-fit for your business.
How do you build an ICP?
You should begin by identifying your best customers. Consider the following questions:
- Which accounts earned you the highest TCV (Total Contract Value) or ACV (Annual Contract Value)?
- Which accounts provide the highest potential for growth?
- Which accounts offered the highest NPS (Net Promoter Score)?
- Which accounts have been with you the longest?
- Which accounts have the highest Customer Lifetime Value (CLV)?
- Which accounts have participated in case studies or written online reviews?
Once you’ve identified your best customers, you can move on to building your ICP. This process requires a combination of firmographic data and behavioral characteristics.
Firmographic data amounts to information about a business’s industry, location, revenue, employee count, etc. This data helps you quickly categorize businesses.
Behavioral characteristics, including information about their buying patterns, engagement, and product usage, tell you how best to approach these ideal prospects.
Look for similarities among your best customers. Is there a location, buying pattern, or employee count in common? Take note of these similarities and use them to build your ICP.
When you recognize these attributes in a prospect, you can classify them as a high-quality lead.
Why do marketers value ICPs?
Your marketing and sales teams alike will benefit from an ICP. Marketers can use an ICP to determine who to target in their next marketing campaign. An ICP helps you quickly identify the businesses that are worth pursuing. In addition, an ICP can tell you how to approach these businesses. A thorough ICP will take into account:
- What factors disqualify a business from buying?
- How do you express your value proposition?
- What kind of messaging resonates with your customers?
These questions should factor into your ICP. This will help your marketing teams plan campaigns strategically with best practices in mind.
How does an ICP differ from a Buyer Persona?
Whereas an ICP consists of observations about a business, a Buyer Persona targets an individual buyer. A Buyer Persona can help you determine which employees are valuable contacts. After all, you want to direct your sales and marketing efforts to the employees who are in a position to purchase, and likely to use, your products. Otherwise, your efforts may go to waste.
To that end, you should consider signing up for Visual Visitor. Our Who to Contact database has over 540 million contacts. You can apply filters to quickly pull up a list of relevant contacts. For example, if you’re looking for Marketing Directors in the Automotive industry, all you have to do is set the appropriate filters.
You can apply filters to specify your preferred industry, location, annual revenue, employee count and more. Plus, you can narrow down your results to match your ideal buyer by specifying your preferred departments and positions.
Once you’ve created an ICP and Buyer Persona, you can apply this data to our database to find your ideal contacts. Prospecting will be noticeably easier.
Creating your Ideal Customer Profile will save you valuable time in the future. You can use it to quickly determine if a lead is worth your attention. In other words, it’s the resource you need to get your sales count climbing.