7-Step Ideal Customer Profile Guide (W/Free Template To Make A List Of High-Quality B2B Leads)

Bonus content: Ideal customer profile template, ICP checklist, PDF copy of this guide + survey template.

In this guide, I'm going to show you a proven framework on how to create an ideal customer profile (or ICP).

This is the exact process I used recently with one client to:

  • Improve client positioning, so they were perceived as a niche industry experts by their customers.
  • Create a hyper-targeted list of B2B prospects that are the excellent fit for their service
  • Generate $200k in sales opportunities after ABM campaign we ran

I'll also share with you a copy of the ICP template I use and The Diver Survey Method to collect valuable insights about your customers.

Ideal Customer Profile Example

A part of Getleado's ICP description

The kicker?

This client operates in highly-competitive space (software development) where they used to be a "one size fits all" vendor for many years.

So let’s dive right in.

What is an ideal customer profile?

An ideal customer profile is a list of attributes that your best customers from a specific market segment have in common.

I divide these attributes into two categories:

1) Standard attributes as revenue, team size, sub-industries, locations, tech stack, ad spendings.

2) Non-standard attributes that are unique and belong to your particular area of business. E.g., hedging experience (for fintech enterprise SaaS), Mobile SDK (for SDK development company), or Complicated automation objects in the portfolio (for the installation platform).

I want to highlight the two most important things that will help you to avoid the most common mistake B2B organizations make when defining ICP.

1. Every market segment you are prospecting is unique. 

Every segment has individual needs and different reasons why do they buy your product or service. That's why it is crucial to create separate ICPs for different market segments.

2. When defining ICP, focus only on your best customers. 

As I mentioned above, all your customers are not equal. If you mix the data of all of your customers, you'll be able to create only a universal "one-size-fits-all" customer avatar. But it is something you want to avoid, and that's why you are reading this article, correct? 🙂

And this leads us to the next question.

Why do you need an ideal customer profile?

There are four purposes of the ideal customer profile.

1. Focus

ICP helps to focus your marketing and sales team on prospecting the high-quality accounts instead of pursuing the entire market. As a result, your company generate better opportunities with much higher average deal value and hit the revenue quota more often.

2. Personalization

You've heard for life about personalization importance, but what does "personalization" actually mean?

I treat personalization as a process of adjusting marketing to a particular group of customers, so they feel this product is done precisely for them.

How can you achieve this level of personalization?

By adjusting all of your marketing content, website, ads, landing pages to the needs, challenges, and goals of your ideal customers.

3. Lead generation channels

Should you advertise on LinkedIn? Or, maybe, write a guest post for TechCrunch? Or attend the expo in Berlin?

The goal of ICP is to eliminate this question and help you to define the channels for generating more leads similar to your best customers.

There is the only way to figure these channels out: run in-depth customer interviews, which I'll cover later in this guide.

4. Marketing Qualification Criteria (MQL)

The fourth purpose of ICP is to figure out the essential points for marketing qualification (MQL).

Marketing Qualification helps to define if the leads that you generate from any given marketing campaign fit your ideal customer profile and need to be nurtured or transferred to sales. Or, you should disqualify them and improve campaigns that generated low-quality leads.

Now, when the ICP goals are clear, I want to answer the last question, and then jump into the step by step process of ICP creation.

There are 4 goals of Ideal Customer Profile: 1. Focus on best possible leads 2. Personalization 3. Define proven lead generation channels 4. Define marketing qualification criteria

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What is the difference between an ideal customer profile and buyer personas?

There is lots of mess when it comes to marketing terminology, especially with the ideal customer profile. You've probably heard all the buzzwords: customer avatar, buyer personas, customer profile.

Now let's put the final dot and finish the mess.

All you need to know is that ICP for any B2B organization consists of two parts:

1. Ideal Account Description (or ideal customer profile or ideal customer avatar).

Ideal Account Description is a list of features (like revenue, team size, location) you'll use for qualification and prospecting.

2. Buying Committee (or B2B Buyer Personas).

These are the job roles that usually influence your deal inside target accounts. I'll reveal the Buying Committee definition in the next section while describing its importance and the committees' roles more thoroughly.

Buying Committee

What is a buying committee?

It is a group of people that somehow influence your deal inside your target accounts. B2B marketers define four general roles inside a buying committee.

Champions

Buying committee champions

Those are the people who are usually in charge of initial product/vendor research. They attend discovery calls with you, prepare comparison reports, and provide info with personal takeaways from calls to the decision-makers.

If you are targeting SMB, quite often, you'll face the situation that the Champion and the Decision-maker might be the same person (for example, CEO).

I usually get requests from SMB CEOs because they are personally interested in getting results for their organization.

In mid-size and enterprise segments, champions could be persons who will be the end-user of your product or collaborate with you as a contractor.

In my case, champions are usually internal marketers who will collaborate with me.

For software development company, champions could be product managers, cause they are in charge of product development, and your team becomes their team extension.

Decision-makers

Buying committee decision-makers

This role is obvious. Decision-makers sign the contracts and approve the budget.

While in SMB, decision-makers actively participate in the research negotiations, in mid-size and enterprise, they usually delegate it to Champions. Champions must provide thorough research, personal opinion about the best solution, and the benefits their organization might get from buying.

In most cases, decision-makers are C+ people who approve the deal and the budget.

Now let's touch two most non-obvious categories of the buying committee: influencers and blockers.

Influencers

Buying committee influencers

Influencers are buying committee members who don't take part in research or negotiations, but they are the persons whose opinion the decision-makers might ask.

Usually, it happens during the team meetings where influencers share their opinion regarding the product or vendor. This way, they can influence your deal either positively or negatively.

Example.

Let's pretend you are selling an enterprise account-based advertising platform. Head of marketing (Champion) is excited about the product, but the CEO (Decision-maker) wants to hear the thoughts of external business consultant (Influencer).

The consultant (Influencer) proves that this product might help to warm up the target accounts and make them aware of their solutions.

CEO approves the deal.

In this case, an external consultant was an influencer who influenced the deal positively.

Now let's touch blockers.

Blockers

Buying committee blockers

Blockers are the buying committee members who are not interested in your solution or might see a danger for themselves.

Let's add some context to our recent example.

Let's pretend you are selling an enterprise account-based advertising platform. Head of marketing (Champion) is excited about the product, but the CEO (Decision-maker) wants to hear the thoughts of Head of Sales (Influencer).

The Head of Sales (Blocker) doubts that this product worth its price. He tells that it would be more efficient to arrange a private meetup with the key clients for the same budget.

CEO declines the deal.

In this case, the head of sales becomes a Blocker.

Ideal customer profile focuses you on attracting high-quality leads who are similar to your key customers instead of prospecting everybody who might buy your product.

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Why do you need to define the buying committee?

There are several reasons why do you need to define the buying committee.

1. You'll avoid the "black box factor" and will be able to influence the buying process (customer journey).

The "black box factor" is a situation when you went through several discovery calls with the Champion. You see his excitement, get an inquiry, and send the proposal hoping to close the deal.

But then you hear "No" without having a clue why have you lost the deal.

When you know the typical buying committee structure, you'll be able to warm up all the buying committee members, prepare the content that might motivate them to approve your deal and engage with them timely.

2. You'll improve the efficiency of your lead generation campaigns.

One of the biggest mistakes I see marketers and BDMs make quite often is when they are prospecting the decision-makers only in mid-size or enterprise companies.

While it's essential to engage with the decision-makers, in most cases, they'll delegate the negotiations to the Champions. And, you know, nobody likes when the vendors jump over their heads 🙂

Besides this, it's much easier to get a meeting with Decision-makers via Champion. If a Champion sees value in your solution, transparent personal and company's/his department's benefits, you'll get much insider information. You will know how to influence other buying committee members and close the deal successfully.

Now, time to move to the core elements of an ideal customer profile.

The core elements of ideal customer profile

Sub-industry

ICP sub-industry

Once you defined a target market segment, you need to understand what sub-industries generate more revenue and are more profitable for your business.

Getleado example.

As a consultant, I work mainly with two market segments: B2B service-based companies and B2B SaaS.

In my case, niche software development companies generate a much higher revenue than other sub-industries in B2B service-based segment. In B2B SaaS, my best customers are enterprise software.

Knowing your target sub-industries will help you to create a better list of prospects and update your positioning and value proposition accordingly.

Ideal customer profile email

Location

Understanding the regions where your most profitable customers are coming doesn't help only with better prospecting. It will give you essential insights on how to adjust your team schedule.

If you are a European company and target US companies, don't forget about the time difference. When your workday if going to the end (17.00 CET), people in Seattle will start working day.

That's why you need to adjust your customer support working hours and all your marketing activities as outreach emails, newsletter social media posts, or ads to your best customers' timezone. 

Sounds obvious, but you'll be surprised how many companies neglect it.

Also, it makes sense to learn more about the holidays and customs of your target markets.

For example, you won't be able to reach out to anybody in Israel on Friday because of Shabbat (weekend in Israel is on Friday and Saturday) or people in the US on every fourth Thursday of November (Thanksgiving Day).

If you want to focus heavily on a specific geo market, do thorough research, think about local reps and localization. You will be able to learn more about market unique characteristics, the typical buying process, what factors influence, local target resources where your target audience hangs out, and use that to your advantage.

For example, if you want to penetrate the German market, you need to know that Germans heavily use their own "LinkedIn" called Xing and highly appreciate if your company has a solid track record and history.

Localization will help you also to avoid silly marketing mistakes, as Clairol did with their curling iron in Germany. The iron was named "Mist Stick" without realizing that "mist" means manure in German. 

The same stupid and funny mistake did Colgate when launching their toothpaste in France. They called it "Cue," which is the name of a French porn magazine.

Annual revenue and team size

Revenue and team size are essential to narrowing down your focus. When you know the revenue and team size range of your best customers, you can use data enhancement software as UpLead to make a relevant list of prospects.

prospecting based on ideal customer profile

Your revenue

You should also add to the ICP the total revenue for every customer you'll be analyzing.

Remember, I mentioned that not all of your customers are equal. When you are developing the final ICP, you need to look at your best customers. That's why I add this element to the template.

The next 3 elements I'll be describing is not publicly available information. It is something you need to discover when talking to your best customers. Later in this guide, I'll share with you how to run in-depth interviews, so read to the end :).

Challenges

Companies hire you or buy your product to solve a specific challenge they can't do at the moment either because of a lack of knowledge, lack of resources, or lack of necessary technology.

The most common case when companies hire me as a consultant is that they hit a revenue plateau, don't have marketing expertise, lost money on ads and outreach, and want to scale.

They don't want to experiment anymore and waste time and money but want somebody who has a solid track record to join their team as an extension, develop a go-to-market strategy and create a marketing and sales machine.

When you know the challenges you solve, you'll be able to address and articulate them, and improve the efficiency of all marketing campaigns: ads, outreach, or content you are creating.

Reasons to buy

Why do your customers buy from you?

Is it because of a lower price, niche positioning, content you are publishing, or case studies and testimonials?

The same as with the challenges you solve, you can leverage the answer to this question for improving your unique value proposition.

Getleado example.

During the customer calls, I always ask this question. 

Besides recommendations, content I'm sharing, and case studies, most of the customers point to my narrow positioning: full-funnel marketing for B2B service-based and SaaS companies. It persuades them that I know how to deal with their particular challenge.

Strategic goals

Strategic goals

Again, as with challenges and reasons why customers buy from you, you need to know what goals they want to achieve with your product or service.

Startups don't hire software development teams just to code. They want to have a partner who'll be able to understand the business needs and create an MVP that market expects at affordable price and timeline.

B2B SaaS companies don't hire digital agencies to create a website. They want to hire a partner who can create a website that will convert the traffic into free trials and customers.

B2B Sales teams don't buy
proposal software just to send the proposals or because they love to click buttons. They want to look professionally, emphasize branding, and be aware when customers opened the proposal so that they can do a timely follow-up.

Again, the only way to know it is to run in-depth customer surveys.

Unique features

Unique features (or non-standard criteria) come from market segmentation. It could be tech stack, ad spendings, or whatever that makes sense for your business.

For example, for one customer who sells the Fintech enterprise software, the unique features we selected were:

low profitability, revenue, and costs operated in a volatile local currency and hedging practice.

Learn more about
market segmentation here.

Buying committee characteristics

ideal customer profile criteria

It's impossible to talk the same way to the younger generation and people over 50. These two categories have entirely different values, decision-making process, and buying criteria.

You need to adjust your marketing message accordingly.

ideal customer profile criteria

I add job roles to identify a typical buying committee structure inside your best customers.

Just as it is impossible to market different age groups the same way, it is impossible to target and pitch the same way stakeholders and middle-managers.

They have different factors that influence their purchasing decision, various benefits they can get from your product, and different reasons to decline your proposal.

Analyze personal benefits each of the buying committee members get from your product, reasons to block the deal, and what objections or concerns you faced while dealing with them.

When you figure out this information, you'll be able to update all your marketing and sales content and improve the lead nurturing program to increase the amount of generated sales-qualified leads.

Check the sales pipeline guide if you want to learn how to optimize and accelerate sales pipeline by consequently overcoming objections and doubts during lead nurturing. 

Target resources

Target resources are places that your target audience regularly visits. It could be social media communities (like B2B marketers&founders), blogs (like Getleado blog), content curation platforms (like Growth Hackers), or niche news portals (like Hackernoon).

Target resources give you a clear view on:

  • Where you can reach your target audience
  • What content does your audience consume and what content is in demand 
  • What social media you should leverage for lead generation and what social media you should avoid

As a result, you can avoid guesswork when working on a new marketing plan

The step by step process how to create ideal customer profile

The step by step process how to create an ideal customer profile

Before we dive deeply into the process, let me share with you our goal.

Our goal is to define the buying triggers and characteristics of your best customers and typical buying committee structure. So we'll be able to improve account selection and research processes, prospecting and lead generation.

As a result, we'd be able to generate better customers, increase average deal value, and LTV.

Now, let's review the step by step process of ICP development.

#1 – Select a specific market segment

Like I mentioned earlier, ICP is the impersonation of your key customers from a specific market segment.

Lots of B2B companies miss this step and make the same mistake. They export all the data from the CRM and create a universal customer avatar.

As a result, they move to the "one-size-fits-all" approach and spray their efforts instead of focusing on specific segments. Keep in mind that for every market segment, you need to create a standalone ICP.

Read more about the marketing segmentation in the B2B marketing strategy guide.

#2 – Choose 10 key customers from that market segment

All clients weren't created equal.

The Pareto Principle tells that 4% of customers might generate 64% of your revenue. Our goal is to find this 4 % and add them to the ICP template.

As a rule of thumb, I suggest selecting 10 best clients from a particular segment.

If you don't have this amount of customers, add as many as you have. It's always better to work with some data than just brainstorming.

#3 – Fill in the ideal client profile template

The next step is filling the ICP template.

You'll need to analyze your accounts, their buying committee structure, and run in-depth customer interviews.

ideal customer profile template

Let's start with the easiest part.

Collect from your CRM the available data as sub-industry (e.g., software development or marketing automation software), location, revenue, our revenue (the total volume of sales to this customer), and team size.

Salesflare CRM

If you are missing some data, you can collect it during the next steps.

Readers often ask me what the CRM is on the screenshot. My personal choice is Salesflare because of easy setup and pre-built automation.

#4 – Define the buying committee members and collect public info about them

Our next step is to define the buying committee. There are several ways how we can do it.

The first step is to analyze CRM and talk to sales.

In CRM, check who was in the email thread. Look for replies and CC. The sales team might provide you more insights. Ask them:

  • Did the Champions or Decision-makers mention anybody from their team whom they want to talk to?
  • Did anybody else from the client's team join the calls/meetings?

Once you'll figure out these people, open LinkedIn Sales Navigator, and find them. If you don't see them on LinkedIn, search on Facebook and Twitter.

If you still can't find the buying committee members, here is a step by step process for you.

Export from CRM your clients' emails to a CSV file (a plain text file that contains a list of data) and upload them on LinkedIn.

Go to My Network –> More Options –> Upload file and upload a file with contacts of your customers.

Searching buying committee on LinkedIn

LinkedIn will show you their profiles.

Searching buying committee on LinkedIn

Once you finally find the buying committee members, copy to the ideal customer template their job roles, approximate age, and social media activity (do they post anything? How often?).

As well, I recommend checking what websites content do they share in their profile.

Target resources to reach ideal customer profile

What influencers content do they engage with or follow.

B2B marketing influencers

What communities are they in.

Communities where ideal customer profile might be

I call it Target Resources.

The reason why do you need to know this information is that you can then collaborate with the same influencers, publish guest posts, or engage in the communities to attract the target audience.

Now, when you've collected the public information, time to analyze the buying process.

Buying committee template

#5 - Analyze the buying process

Here are three steps to analyze the buying process.

1. Interview sales team

During the interview, ask your sales team the next questions:

  • What were the goals of every buying committee member they wanted to achieve with our product?
  • What concerns or objections did you face during the sales process? At what stage did the objections appear, and why? How did you handle the concerns?
  • What factors influenced the purchasing decision of every buying committee member?
  • When every buying committee member joined the sales process
  • What are the benefits every buying committee member gets from our product? Ask about personal gains and the benefits their department gets. 

2. Analyze emails and sales calls

Besides interviewing a sales team, I recommend running a manual analysis of all sales calls and emails. We are doing it not because of a lack of trust to the sales team but just because of the human factor :).

If you aren't interviewing sales about the new deal, it's evident that they can forget the details of the negotiations and provide you only what they remember.

If you do additional research and analyze sales calls and email, you'll be able to figure out way more objections, concerns, and doubts. This information will help you to improve your marketing campaigns, MOFU, and BOFU content.

3. Run in-depth customer interviews

The last step is a vital one but surprisingly is missed by most of the B2B companies. Let's dive deeply into it.

#6 – The Diver Survey Method: enrich ideal customer profile with in-depth customer interviews

In the previous steps, we collected the available public information about your key customers, defined the buying committee, and interviewed sales. Only this process should provide you great insights about your ideal customers.

Now let's enrich your ideal customer profile by interviewing your best customers.

The insights you'll gain not only will help you to develop a better ICP but amplify your value proposition, polish the company's positioning, and improve the efficiency of all marketing programs you are running. 

Here is a list of questions I suggest you ask during the customer interview:

  • What leads them to buy products like yours?
  • What factors influence their purchasing decision?
  • What are their current challenges that are related to your business?
  • What are the problems your product solves for them?
  • What might happen if these problems won't be solved?
  • Why did they choose your company?
  • What they love most about your product?
  • Are they satisfied with everything (quality, service, support, results, etc.), or something that can be improved?
  • What features they'd like to see in your product?
  • Can they give you a testimonial or recommend your company?
  • What social media do they regularly use?
  • Which industry blogs, websites, or influencers are they following?
  • Who is also involved in their negotiation process or with whom they consult before buying products like yours?

Insights you'll get are priceless. 

Once you'll finish interviewing all the existing customers, here is what I suggest you doing next.

If you are a B2B service-based company, run the in-depth interviews will all upcoming customers,

If you sell a B2B product (e.g., B2B SaaS) and have an upcoming steady stream of new customers, then I suggest you make a little tweak to the process.

You won't have enough time to interview all of the new customers, so continue interviewing only these customers who are similar to your best ones. For all other customers, you can send an automated email that includes a link to the survey.

Here is how do I do it.

I have an automated weekly newsletter for the new subscribers and leads. In the middle of the sequence, I send an email asking about the feedback.

ideal customer profile survey

Here is an example of my survey.

ideal customer profile survey

Feel free to adapt and leverage in your business.

You can also download the more detailed customer interview checklist below.

#7 – Define ideal customer profile from existing data

The last step is the easiest one. 

It's to analyze all the data you've collected from your best customers from the specific market segment and create an ideal customer profile. As you get it, ICP is a combination of patterns, features, and information about your best customers.

Sometimes you might be perplexed with what you should put in the ICP template. When you have concerns or doubts, take a look at the customers with the most significant share in revenue, and put the data you've collected about them into the template.

The final version of your ICP should look more or less like this.

ideal customer profile worksheet

A part of Getleado's ICP description

If your ICP looks similar, then you did a great job! Time to share it with your team and stakeholders.

Now, when we have covered the detailed process of ideal customer profile development, I assume you might have only one question:

How to create an ICP for a new product or a new market segment if you don't have customers yet?

How to create an ideal customer profile for a new product or a new market segment if you don't have customers yet?

Great question!

Here is what I recommend to do.

Leverage your network

1. Make a list of top 100 customers from this market segment. Think about the customers that you want to do business with. You feel you are a great match.

2. Define a buying committee. Make a hypothesis about the buying committee and write down the appropriate job roles.

3. Find the buying committee. Find these people on social media (LinkedIn, probably, would be your go-to channel) and collect public information about them (check the Step 4)

4. Connect with them. Send these folks a connection request and invite for lunch (if you are in the same city), or ask if they are available for the quick chat about problems your product solves. 

You don't need to pitch or mention your product at all. You can say: 

Hey Andrei. 

Every week I meet/talk with Job Role from INDUSTRY to discuss the CHALLENGES. During the last couple of weeks, I met/spoke with FULL NAME, and he provided insights on the TOPIC.

I love what you guys are doing at COMPANY and wanted to invite you for a lunch/quick chat to share the insights and see how we can be helpful to each other.

Are you open for 30 minutes lunch/15 minutes call?

Cheers,

Andrei

5. Follow-ups. If you don't get a reply, you can send several follow-up emails and send a private message on social media

6. Interview. If you got a positive response, try to interview them with the questions from Step 6 

Here is a caveat. 

Instead of asking: «What do you love most about our product?» ask them: «What do you like most about the products that solve these CHALLENGES?» 🙂

Here is another approach.

Target communities for icp
1. Make a list of target communities where this audience might hang out. 

Usually, these are Facebook, LinkedIn, or Slack groups. My B2B Marketers&Founders community might be a good fit for you 🙂

2. Join these communities and become an active member quickly. 

It's really simple. Introduce yourself, mentioning what you are working on now, what kind of help you are looking for, and how you can help other community members. 

Start answering questions and ask yours. Connect with admins and ask how you can help them.

In two weeks, you'll be a prominent and well-known member of any online community. Believe me, as a long-time community admin :).

3. Reach out to the admins and share your challenge. 

Ask whom they recommend you to talk with and can then connect you with them? As well, ask if you can make a post that you are looking to chat with ten people regarding the problems your product solves.

In most cases, you'll get a positive reply and valuable connections.

You can thank me later. 🙂

One caveat: once you'll finish your research, don't leave or forget about the community. You can decrease your engagement, but don't forget to visit it from time to time. Who knows when you might need help again.

When you get your first customers, return to this guide, and repeat all the steps.

The 5W technique or how to validate your ideal customer profile

How to validate ideal customer profile

One of the most common questions I get about the ideal customer profile: how to be sure I did everything the right way?

The first option is to hire me as a consultant to get constructive feedback and ways for improvement. Just kidding, but if you need marketing help, feel free to reach me out here.

Here is a 5W technique that will help you to validate ICP.

1. Who is my best customer?

At the beginning of this guide, we talked that all customers weren't created equal. Be sure that you've analyzed your best customers from a particular market segment and didn't add mix it with customers from other segments. 

If you have doubts, doublecheck your CRM and filter it by segments and average deal value or LTV.

2. Why do they buy my product?

Theodore Levitt is known for the famous quote when he said: "People don't want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole."

You should apply the same approach when analyzing what problems your product solves. It will help to get more clarity on how to approach and prospect the leads that are similar to your best customers.

3. Who influences my deal?

Don't forget that in B2B, you usually deal with a group of people we call the buying committee. Some of them influence your deal directly, while others (influencers and blockers) can impact it on the latest stages just by sharing their opinion.

You need to think beforehand how to engage with the entire buying committee. As well, how to motivate all the members to move further with your deal.

4. Where can I find them?

You need to figure out what channels you can use for prospecting and lead generation. The only way to figure this out is to analyze the social media activity of your best customers and run in-depth customer surveys.

When you obtain this information, you'll never need to ask yourself what channels should I try.

5. What influences their decision-making process?

The last question helps you understand the typical buying process and the customer journey of your best customers. You can leverage this information to improve a content strategy, lead generation touches, lead nurturing cadence, sales enablement, and sales processes.

As well, this information helps you to understand how to improve a company's positioning and unique value proposition.

The most common mistakes with ICP

the most common ideal customer profile mistakes

1. Mixing customers from different segments.

Once I had a conversation with the B2B SaaS founder who sells $10k enterprise solution.

When I asked about target market segments and ideal customer profile, he answered that his target audience is marketers and BDMs from North America.

– Really? I asked. Will you treat a request from a marketer or BDM as a high-quality lead despite market segment, team size, or revenue?

– Yes, he answered.

– So, if a marketer of an early-stage startup or from the FMCG market will reach you out, you'll be able to help him?

– Oh, no. We don't work with an FMCG, and early-stage startups can't afford our service.

Should you be surprised they were struggling with lead generation?

Mixing customers from different segments leads to a "one size fits all" customer profile and, as a result, to problems with positioning and lead generation.

2. Fill in the Ideal Customer Profile template with the public information only.

Just knowing that your ideal customer is a B2B service-based company located in the US, Canada, or Australia with a team size of 20-50 people and annual revenue around $500k, won't help you for better prospecting.

Yep, you definitely will narrow focus, but there is still a vast market to prospect.

You need to figure out the unique features that unite your best customers (e.g., paying for enterprise software or having a mobile SDK). Only this way, you'll be able to create a list of prospects that are an excellent fit for your product.

3. Create Ideal Account Profile dismissing the buying committee.

The next typical mistake is to focus on the account description only and eliminating the buying committee. 

There is a famous quote:  People buy from people, not businesses.

People buy from people, not businesses.

Click to Tweet

So when making a list of target accounts, you need to add people you'll be prospecting.

But who you'll add to the list?

C+ only?

In the guide, I've already shared why targeting C+ people is a bad strategy. 

First reason: it's hard to reach them out if you are targeting mid-size or enterprise. 

Second reason: in most cases, they will forward you to the mid-managers who dislike when vendors jump over their heads :).

Think beforehand who are the buying committee members inside your target prospects, understand the reasons why they can buy your product and motives not to buy.

4. Brainstorm the buying process instead of customer interviews

The only way to understand what motivates buying committee members to push or block your deal is in-depth customer interviews. Period.

Next Steps (W/Free ICP Template To Generate High-Quality B2B Leads)

Following my step-by-step framework, you can get a clear view on who are your best customers, how to make a better prospecting list, and influence the deal buy engaging with the entire buying committee.

The best part?

Your lead generation campaigns will be targeting only high-quality leads. You'll be able to increase LTV and the average deal value.

The only missing thing is my ideal customer profile template.

If you want to get a free copy of the same ICP worksheet I use with all my clients for laser-targeted lead generation campaigns, click the button below.

Learn more about ideal customer profile

Here are some more steps for you if you want to learn more, have any questions or need any help:

  • If you want to understand the entire market segmentation process and look over my shoulder on how do I create ICP live, join my full-funnel marketing course. 
  • If you need help with your ICP, book a call with me here.
  • Join my Full-Funnel B2B marketing community on Facebook or LinkedIn

Then before you go. 

Let me know in the comments below right now:

What’s the ONE thing you’re going to start optimizing your ideal customer profile?

  • Identifying buying committee.
  • Running in-depth customer interviews.
  • Segmenting your customer base.

Or something else?