Best Practices to define an Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)?
In order to define your ICP you need to find good answers to the following questions:
- What types of companies do I want to target?
- Who is the decision maker for my product at these companies?
- Who are my best customers? What do they have in common?
1. What types of companies do I want to target?
A good first step when defining your ICP is to define the types of companies you want to target. The following parameters are useful and will help you segment your target companies:
- What is their industry (ex: internet, retail, computer hardware, ...)?
- How big are they? How many employees do they have?
- Where are they located?
- What is their yearly revenue?
- What tools and technologies are they using (ex: Shopify, Zendesk, Adwords...)?
- How much funding did they raise?
2. Whose pains are my products solving?
Once you define the companies you want to target you need to find the appropriate people at these companies. Who are the users of your product? Who is the decision maker? Are you going to be selling to the decision maker or to the user first? Once you decide who you want to contact you need to consider the following selection criteria to find your ideal contacts:
- What is their job title? (ex: Marketing vs Sales departments)
- What is their seniority? (ex: Vice Presidents vs Directors or Managers)
- Where are they located? (ex: US vs. Europe vs. Asia)
3. Who are my best customers? What do they have in common?
A good strategy to help you find your ICP and the answers to points 1. and 2. is to talk to your best customers. Reach out to your best customers and find what they have in common, find a pattern that separates your best and worst customers. Here is a good set of questions that you should ask your current customers:
- How did you originally find our company?
- Why did you originally buy from our company?
- Why do you continue to buy from our company?
- How has working with our company helped your business?
- Would you refer our company to other people? Who and why?