What is an ICP and how do you create one?

Trying to reach everyone is like throwing darts blindfolded, but a well-researched ideal customer profile is the bullseye for effective targeting.

Rory Sadler
January 9, 2023
March 20, 2024
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Trying to reach everyone is like throwing darts blindfolded, but a well-researched ideal customer profile is the bullseye for effective targeting.

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No matter how big your business is or how long you’ve been in business if you want to continue to grow your customer base, you need to have an effective outbound sales strategy.

But this can be difficult to accomplish for some businesses because of one crucial question that can leave most companies mystified.

If you’ve been missing the mark on your ideal customer since you’ve been in business, it probably means you’ve struggled to find your steam and grow your business the way you want. So how can you transform the performance of your business through your outbound sales strategy?

That’s easy. You need to sit down, identify and draw up your ideal customer profile. And that’s precisely what the team at trumpet wanted to dive into today with this blog. So, we’re going to explore what exactly an ideal customer profile, ICP, is and how you can start creating yours.

What is an ICP?

Creating your ideal customer profile is the practice of developing a clear picture of the type of company that will most likely want to buy your products or services. And the same ones that’ll also be loyal customers and turn into champions of your product, leading to them recommending you to their network.

Factor in data like the size of the ideal company, the niche market they’re in, the things they do as a business for their customers, and the reasons that they’ll love your product or service.

Where do you get the data for your ICP?

That’s the easy part. You already have it! The best place to pull the data to create your ideal customer profile is from the customer data that you already have.

Customers that have bought from you in the past provide you with an incredible resource of data, especially the repeat companies and customers. Take a look at the data about their markets, buying styles, and needs, and you’ll discover a treasure trove of data for your ideal customer profile.

Now, what if you don’t have the data from customers because you’re just getting up and running? Not a problem, you have competitors with similar products and services, and there is plenty of data available on their sales and customers to pull from. You can put together focus groups with your target audience to collect customer data. 

How do you create your ideal customer profile? 

Before you dive into creating your ideal customer profile, you need to take the time to gather up the data that you have. But just as importantly, you need to figure out the basics of ICP creation before you can choose the best strategy to create one for your business.

And that process starts by asking yourself these questions:

What type of companies are your ideal customers?

  • Why did they purchase from you?
  • If not from you, where are they buying it?  
  • What are they spending?
  • What other products might they be using?
  • Which team at that company is making that decision and using the product/service?
  • How big is their company?

Once you identify your ideal customer, it’s time to create your ICP.

How to create your ICP

We’re going to dive into three parts to create a strategic ICP effectively.

  • Identify your best customers
  • Research those same customers
  • Build a profile.

Let’s start with how to identify your best customers.

Every ideal customer has six traits that you can use to identify them.

Ready: They’re ready to buy what you’re selling.

Willing: They see clearly what value you can deliver for them.

Able: They can afford to buy your products or services.

Skilled: They have the in-house experience and knowledge to understand using your product effectively. This translates to them being a good fit.

Growing: They’re looking to expand and scale.

Networked: They are able, willing, and ready to share why your products changed their business.

If you don’t have many customers or data, conduct focus groups or interviews with potential customers. But if you’ve been in business for some time, all the data you need is right in front of you. So, look at the clients that buy the most from you and compare them to find the similarities using these six metrics.

Next, research your customers

This part is easy but the longest. First, take the time to understand the market your best customers operate in and why they bought your products so quickly. The more you research your ideal market, the better you’re able to grow. For instance, consider: 

  • Location
  • Average company size
  • Revenue
  • Pain points
  • Industry
  • Competitors
  • Tech stack

Build your ICP

Now it’s time to use all that data and those questions to write out your ICP. Once you have it all laid out, you can now know who to target to accelerate your growth within all your marketing tools.

At trumpet, we’re transforming the full B2B sales cycle from pitch to onboarding. If you’re ready to discover what the power of our revolutionary online sales pods can do for your sales teams, sign up for free today.

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