“Selling to everyone with a heartbeat means you don’t have a finger on the pulse of the ideal customer. – Paul Reilly”
Any salesperson or marketer will agree that businesses cannot survive without an ideal or loyal customer base irrespective of location, industry, or size. It is almost inevitable for brands to combat shifting customer loyalties with changing marketing dynamics and introducing new brands.

However, if you do not know who you are looking for in such a scenario, how will you know when you find them? Building an ideal customer profile for lead generation in the B2B industry is necessary when facing this dilemma!

Defining an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

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In a layman’s language, an Ideal Customer Profile as a hypothetical description of the type of organization or company suited to convert into a paid customer of a particular product or a service.

The ICP, built based on various factors delved in the latter part of the article, lists those high-value best-fit companies with the quickest sales cycle and can be deemed beneficial for your brand. In short, it is the profile of a potential customer that can develop the perfect mutual relationship with your company.

In this blog, we will take you through the following
segments
metrics
icp
icp benefits
analyzing
methods icp
template icp
improve icp

Segments in customer’s profiles

1 1

1. Potential

He/she has shown interest in your product or service by visiting your website, generating conversation through online sources, or referred to you by a third party.

2 1

2. Loyal

He/she has been a contact consumer of your product/service, irrespective of price, competitor brands, features.

3 1

3. New

He/she is new to your CRM family, having consumed your product/service once or twice. They have the potential to be a loyal customer if the pain points are met efficiently.

4 1

4. Discount/ Convenience seekers

He/she is otherwise dormant and shows interest in your product/service only when there are offers or running promotions.

5 1

5. Former

He/she used to be your consumer but has been inactive for a long time. The causes for this can be – change in location, job title, contact details, or inclination towards another brand.

6

6. Informed

He/she is aware of the market and the services offered by other competitive brands. You can identify the group by their online presence behavior and conversations they take part in.

7

7. Reluctant

He/she is tough to transform into a paying customer despite numerous marketing tactics. This might be owing to factors like budget, location, and need.

8

8. Impulsive

He/she falls into the same group as the reluctant but can be identified or defined better by income. Often impulsive buyers spend more than their set budget, only never to repurchase it.

9

9. Brand buyers

He/she mostly buys from reputed brands and is highly unlikely to invest in medium and small-scale brands.

10

10. Bargain seekers

He/she seeks a profitable bargain and is likely to incline towards the brands which offer them the same.

Metrics to focus on while designing an ideal customer profile

Presence

– What do they do?
– What are their goals?
– What are their values?

Fears, pains, and objections

– What are/can be their top 3 pain points?
– What obstacles they face in their current operations?
– What aspects of growth do they lack?

Conversational pattern

– What is their online behavior?
– What are the solutions they are looking for?
– What conversations are they taking part in?

Buyer-behaviour

– What services are they already consuming?
– How can your product/service add more value to it?
– Why must they choose you?

Ideal Customer Profile examples for different industry sectors

1. For a software brand
Core attributes

Company name

XYZ

Industry sector

Pharma manufacturing and distribution

Company size

10,000+ employees

Estimated growth PA

40% growth on y+y

Location

Europe, USA, Japan, India, South Africa, New Zealand (will expand to 50+ countries by 2030)
Additional attributes

Technology for CRM used

XYZ

Using it since

2013

Business objectives

Short term- 50% growth in lead generation; Long term- get funding to establish a data analytics software

Services offered by XTZ technology

Data assimilation, AI analysis, direct integration, and so on.

Pain points

Individual access to the database by each team, hence the need to create multiple data administrators

Decision-makers

CTO, Technical Head, Partner, Owner

Other attributes

Loyal customer of XYZ software; known brand for SaaS industry thought leadership

Annual marketing budget

$50000
2. To target a CEO

Name

Steve Kilmer

Company

XYZ

Location

Pan global

Industry sector

Retail

Professional background

Highly interested in technological innovations. Worked in XYZ Company as Technical head for eight years. Has a Masters in Software Manufacturing from XYZ university. With 30 years of experience in the retail, manufacturing, and distribution industry, he/she is committed to creating a sustainable growth channel for the brand he is associated with.

Hobbies and behaviors

Tech-savvy, attends webinars, seminars, fairs, and conferences related to technology

Hierarchy level

A class

Technology purchased since joining XYZ company-

Services used-

3. For targeting an eatery in the hospitality industry

Restaurant name

XYZ

Type

Fine dining

Location

Paris

Chains (if applicable)

Delhi, New York, Shanghai, Tokyo, Singapore, Berlin

Goals

Willing to explore more metro cities in South East Asia and European countries in 2021

Primary cuisine type

Multi-cuisine

Specialty

Lebanese cuisine

Seating capacity

200+

Ambiance

Not suited to families, best suited for corporate dinners

Owner/Manager/Key-decision maker

Mr. ABC, Regional Manager of South East Asia

Benefits of building an ICP for B2B lead generation

Lead generation in the B2B industry is a tricky business. When salespeople in the B2B industry focus on a specific market segment to attract and generate leads, it polishes the marketing game. It ensures that the partnership is mutually beneficial and achieves a significant success rate.

Other benefits of building an ICP that bring you close to successful B2B lead generation

  • Identify high-value accounts and focus most of the marketing resources on high-quality leads.
  • Determine the allocation of resources for the high-value and best fit accounts with quality, organic lead generation, and sales.
  • It helps align the marketing and sales teams’ goals on the core value proposition, thus providing better customer service and meet the goals more efficiently.
  • Use the intent of ICPs to consider building and improving the product or service to meet those customers’ needs.
  • Intent-based ICPs also enables marketing teams to strategize data-driven localized marketing campaigns to reach out to the global audience with minimum effort.
  • Serve as a guide for creating a Target Account List and identify the most valuable leads most likely to convert.
  • Retain more customers and extend the average customer lifeline through loyalty programs and get more referrals.

Analyzing an ICP

Customer profile analysis is essential to attain maximum results from building an ICP. A basic example of a customer profile analysis can be
An ideal customer profile analysis would be Case – A cement brand to launch its product in Kentucky
check

Industry sector

Construction (and other related industries)
check

Revenue size

30% or more annual revenue
check

Expenditure budget

$ XYZ
check

Current cement usage brand

XYZ
check

Location

Kentucky and other nearby areas
check

Company size

1000+ employees
check

Association

Commercial building projects
check

Pain points to address

(if any)

Methods of building a responsive ICP

Other benefits of building an ICP that bring you close to successful B2B lead generation
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| Company size

Group 24179

| Company revenue

Group 24180

| Industry sector

Group 24181

| Location

Group 24182

| Employee size

Group 24176

Depending on the product, service, or brand marketed, one may want to include other insights to identify the right audience segment. As cited above, different companies leverage different methods to develop their ideal customer profile. But the most beneficial and typical one is where they look at the best customers of their current times and analyze what they have in common to develop customized solutions.

Have a look at the method we are talking about –

  • Collect data
  • Segment the database
  • List the high-value accounts
  • Frame your customized ICP
  • Start your lead generation campaigns

1. Collect data
Many companies rely on employing a team of data miners, data scientists, and data analysts to gather data insights. They mostly rely on AI tools to collate the data. However, one major drawback of following this method is that the data might comprise many anomalies due to the lack of manual verification.

Companies are increasingly inclining towards professional database providers for the sake of data collection. We provide top-quality 360 database solutions-including customized mailing lists exclusively tailor-designed to your requirement. So, if you are looking to minimize your efforts to design an ICP or want a high quality manually verified dataset of your ICPs, DataCaptive is the place to be.

2. Segment the database
When the data collected is put into categories based on similarities, it gives salespersons’ better access, analysis, and data for profitable lead generation and multi-channel marketing campaigns.

DataCaptive categories its master database into four broad categories-

Demography

Age, Gender, Location, Job-title, Income, etc.

Geography

Location, Postal address, Phone number, etc.

Firmographics

Company size, Revenue size, etc.

Buyer-psychology

Online search behavior, Consumption history

3. Identify high-value accounts
Once the data is segmented, the most valuable accounts should be listed separately to target them with ABM tactics. The best clients are represented by the ideal customer circle, succeeded by the potential customer circle.

4. Frame your customized ICP
Design your ideal ICPs by noting down intrinsic contact details like company name, URL, size, revenue, social media handles, location, and so on.

5. Start your lead generation campaigns
Start your data-driven lead generation campaigns to drive sales and attain maximized sales numbers. DataCaptive’s lead generation service puts your business on a global stand with intent-based-leads. It is a great way to drive your business growth with insights that focus on your customers’ intentions.

 

A basic template for an ideal customer profile would look like this.

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Group 24222
The difference between ideal customer profiles and buyer personas many times is heavily blurred. While ICP is a specific segment of the market or an organization, buyer personas are hypothetical profiles of ‘people’ or executives of the organizations involved in the decision-making process.
Tip-
Using buyer personas in an email campaign increases open rate by 2X and click-through rate by 5X. (Source- MLT Creative)
leads sales
This detailed guide tells how to convert leads into successful sales in 2021.

How to improve your ICP

Many B2B marketers would agree that ICPs need to be updated in a specific interval to be highly effective in lead generation. The question that arises here is how to update existing ICPs for a maximum response? You should –

a. Enrich your CRM database
An accurate and authentic CRM database helps you analyze your database better and build more successful lead generation in return. DataCaptive’s data enrichment services allow you to access a complete structured quality dataset and enhances your outreach and customer experience.

b. Review customer feedback
When you review both positive and negative feedback, it helps better understand your audience’s mindset and requirements. This goes a long way in analyzing the audience and the market and transforming your service accordingly.

c. Analyze your organic traffic to your website and other online channels
Utilize tools to analyze both organic and inorganic traffic. Google Analytics is a universally favored tool used to track consumer behavior, which can reveal plenty of details about visitors to your website. By analyzing your audience’s behavior, you can learn more about what they’re most interested in spending time on.

d. Understand the pattern of successful sales
When you as a marketer are open to scrutinizing the sales pattern of successful campaigns from your competitor’s brand, you will understand how and why these campaigns have been successful.

Use an ICP to build long-term relationships with your customers.

In conclusion

ICPs are an integral part of quality lead generation, especially in the B2B sector. We hope that this article has helped you understand the reasons, benefits, and tactics of building an ICP for maximum lead generation. Drop your comments and let us know what else you’d like to know about an Ideal Customer Profile.

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