When it comes to B2B lead generation, creating ideal customer profiles (ICP) is one of the most important things you can do. Why? Well, take into consideration how all sales teams hate chasing unproductive leads because they are a poor fit. Creating an ICP will help address this problem as it will provide you with some guidelines to keep you focused on the right targets.
What is an Ideal Customer Profile?
HubSpot define the ICP as follows: The ideal buyer profile defines which companies are a good fit for your offering and which ones are not. If you are a B2B company, the definition should be at the company level, not the contact level.
Basically, it’s a description of a company that you feel will benefit from your services. Every business wants new clients and with and ICP in place it will allow you to focus on attracting clients that are the most profitable and valuable for your business.
61% of B2B marketers send all leads directly to sales, while only 27% of those leads are actually qualified. - HubSpot
The above stat from HubSpot highlights how useful ICP can be to your business. The main purpose of an ICP is to give you a better understanding of what your best client looks like. ICP will help you when it comes answering questions such as:
- What industry/Vertical do they work in?
- What type of service do they want?
- What are their pain points?
- What is their budget?
- What is their employee size?
- What is their revenue?
- What do they search for online?
- What is their preferred method of content consumption?
By adopting this approach, you can start to focus on the right customers and develop the right strategies and messages that are tailored for them.
Benefits of an Ideal Customer Profile
As mentioned above, by creating your Ideal Customer Profile(s) you’ll be in a position to use the insight within your marketing activity in the following ways:
You will gain a better understanding for what your ideal clients are searching for and the language they use. This will help you when it comes to creating content, long-tail key words, publications and guest blogging.
This is a key factor in any marketing activity. Use the information gained from your ICP to personalise your website, content and messages. Venture Beat reported that 70% to 94% of marketers have seen increases in key site performance indicators such as sales by employing personalisation.
You can create content that will engage with your clients because you will have a better understanding of their pain points, the type of content they like to consume and in what format.
Not only can you create the content but you can also map your content to different stages of the buyer’s journey.
With distinct ICP’s you can segment your data and create tailored marketing campaigns that align with their needs and buying journey.
How to create Ideal Customer Profile
Your Ideal Customer Profile(s) should be based upon research and interviews from your staff, current clients and prospects. Remember you are creating a fictional character that represents your ideal client but the information and data needs to be real. You should continue to grow and develop your ICP(s) over time as the market and clients always change. To help you get started we have created a template for you, download it below.