So many marketers, novice and experts alike, cannot really function efficiently without building an ideal customer profile first.
What makes a stalwart marketer stand out from his respective counterparts?
It’s as simple as that. An experienced marketer would carefully lay out the plan to document an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) first, rather than chasing leads mindlessly.
What is an Ideal Customer Profile?
Say, for example, your repository is cluttered with messy data about your leads. And you can’t figure out whom to approach and whom to avoid.
Now, you’ll be better off building an ideal customer profile that will supervise you to target only the best possible prospects.
An Ideal Customer Profile is something inevitable to figure out who your ideal customers are, as well as their needs and wants.
Above all, it engenders the salesperson with the power to identify unproductive and not-so-ideal leads.
However, building an ICP is not child’s play. It entails hours and hours of research before actually concluding who is most likely to avail your product and service.
However, notwithstanding all the planning and research that goes on behind the scenes, there are still a few oft-overlooked mistakes that marketers end up committing.
So be wary of these common mistakes that might impinge on your Ideal Customer Profile and eventually your sales.
1. Quality Over Quantity Should Be Your Main Motto
This is one rookie mistake that many marketers are guilty of.
Creating too many ideal customers profiles has its attractions, especially when the generous amount of data inundates your repository. At first, it might seem appropriate to make a separate ICP for every individual, but when all is said and done, having too much at your hands will harm you in the long term.
With too many Ideal Customer Profiles, your marketing strategy will end up being all over the place. Furthermore, it’s highly likely that your profiles might not turn out to be so different after all.
To avoid this rookie mistake, you’ll be better off creating a single Ideal Customer Profile that will depict a majority of your prospects.
This way, all your information will be under one umbrella. As a result, analyzing your most successful customers will not become a nasty chore. Plus, you’ll have a clear-cut vision of your lead generation, sales, and conversion rate.
2. Limiting Your Ideal Customer Profile To Marketing
Ideal Customer Profile is often viewed as a “marketing thing”, which limits its usage in other domains.
While the whole concept of ICP came into light due to marketing only, it can work wonders if included in sales and customer support as well.
A marketer’s job is to attract the prospects and eventually turn them into leads using the ICP. But it’s the sales team that will drive the revenue from prospects by turning them into permanent customers.
Therefore, to augment the conversation rate your sales team needs to be armed with credible information about the buyer.
Also, ICP will keep the sales team from wasting their as well as the prospect’s time with irrelevant information.
Now that the sales team has successfully acquired the customer comes the most tedious chore: providing reliable support to your customer to retain them for a long time.
Ideal Customer Profile will help the customer support team to understand the customer’s communication preferences, resulting in better customer service.
3. Overlooking Exclusionary Ideal Customer Profiles
You’ve carefully laid out a foundation about your ideal customers, that is the customers who are likely to be most productive and offer you the with the best possible benefits.
But have you ever thought about the customers who are a no-go?
If not, then now is as good a time as any.
You know those people who indulge in browsing your website for hours, giving you false hope? Those who often masquerade as potential buyers but in reality have no intention of making a purchase? Yes, Lookie Loos. You got that right.
Now, what are you doing to avoid being reeled in by these leads who, despite every sign that indicates otherwise, may never, ever buy your product?
To sidestep this problem, don’t overlook making an exclusionary or, one can say, negative customer profile.
What Is Exclusionary Customer Profile?
You already know what an ideal customer profile is, a quintessential profile depicting the prospects whom you want to (and should) approach.
Now, an exclusionary customer profile is exactly the opposite. It is an archetype of the type of prospects whom you should be wary of approaching.
That is not to say that you shouldn’t respond to them. Thank them for commenting on your blog post. Retweet their response if the content and intent are right. They can prove to be important to grow your outreach; however, don’t waste your time in trying to convert them into a buyer.
4. Don’t Rely On Conjectures
Having a clear foresight of your ideal customers is empowering, but it should not base on conjecture alone.
No one is keen on curbing their creativity. That said, gathering some factual ideal client information steers you in the right direction.
Base your information on credible facts and figures, begin with building demographic information, and then move on to brainstorming on the type of prospect you want to pursue.
However, relying too heavily on demographic information is also not advisable. Demographic information, like age, gender, niche, company size, so on and so forth, can be useful in quickly identifying your leads. But your ICP will become an all-rounder after noting down the challenges and pain points that might be inflicting your prospects.
5. Not Auditing And Updating Your Ideal Customer Profile
If you’re guilty of forgetting all about your ICP after carefully building it, then you’re doing a lot of harm to your marketing.
The aims and pain points of your prospects are bound to change with time. What they are trying to accomplish now may differ from what they were trying to accomplish at the time you made your ICP.
Plus, as the trajectory of your growth changes and accelerates, your target audience may change as well. To keep up to date with your target audience, you need to reevaluate your ICP at least a few times a year. Keeping it accurate and up to date is as essential as building it in the first place.
Are you also guilty of making these mistakes? If yes, then figure out and take the necessary steps and alleviate them.
Developing an accurate and actionable Ideal Customer Profile takes a lot of time and effort, but once completed it will benefit you tremendously. Moreover, the Lead Generation Process can become easier than ever.
Opinions expressed here are the opinions of the author. Influencive does not endorse or review brands mentioned; does not and can not investigate relationships with brands, products, and people mentioned and is up to the author to disclose. VIP Contributors and Contributors, amongst other accounts and articles, are professional fee-based.
Senior VP of Business Intelligence Development, I have assisted the Fortune 1000 company with expertise in the web as a whole, including ground-zero marketing efforts that benefit both consumer and vendor. I’m a thinker, communicator, marketer, competitor, people person, and all-around busy bee. I’m a relentless networker with several years of real-world experience and two college degrees under my belt. He is also a contributor on Esprittoday.