Let’s be honest: sales, marketing, and management teams, more often than not, have a different view of their Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). It might seem like a minor nuisance, but it greatly impacts your ICP marketing strategies. If you ask C-level executives, they’re likely to give you an answer that reflects data that matters to them.
Another common problem is that people describe their ideal customers using unmeasurable parameters like “tech-savvy.” These things literally give you nothing; you can’t use this as a data point or filter to create an audience segment and run targeted campaigns. Your selection parameters and, therefore, b2b audience data you’ll be looking for need to be actionable and hyper-precise.
Let’s dive into the ICP creation process to see where it usually goes wrong.
Common Mistakes of ICP Modeling
Most b2b companies start defining ICP based on their intuition and the scarce amount of customer feedback. Later, this raw vision of ICP solidifies through real-time market feedback, research, and GTM data analysis.
Further, teams enrich ICP profiles with data that matters to their objectives and the technology they use. For instance, paid advertising through LinkedIn focuses on lead generation. Conversely, salespeople and advertisers need ICP to identify qualified prospects they’d like to reach out to.
So the problem is that without data-informed and streamlined development of ICP, each team starts to move in a different direction. Consequently, conversions start to drop. Therefore, there’s a burning need for a data-driven view of ICP that everyone can buy into.
The Five-Step Journey to Comprehensive ICP
So what exactly should data-informed ICP development look like? Here’s an example of a tried-and-true approach.
1. Run Cross-team Discussion to Define Objectives of Building ICP
Gather around members of work teams to discuss actual use cases of ICP. For example, marketers want ICP to reflect targeting criteria, and the product team needs it to build a product roadmap. Figure out the core definition of ICP that you can extend into different directions of business activity.
2. Get Inputs from Sales People, Marketers, Product, and CS
Don’t miss out on the customer success team (CS) data. They can update on the closed won deals and types of customers that renew. This information is invaluable because marketing and sales can reach out to leads that don’t buy.
The main idea of Step 2 is to investigate the entire funnel to identify ICP. So pay attention to data points that indicate a successful customer all the way through their journey.
3. Identify Data Points that Might Contort the Results
Analyze the value of input data and identify the gaps in the funnel. This will help you attribute different values to each lead, depending on their position in the funnel. Therefore, you focus on data points that identify high-value prospects.
4. Enrich ICP with Necessary Data Points
Once you’ve got the initial dataset, it’s time to enrich it with additional data points. You can source those from third-party data providers like ZoomInfo, Apollo, and others. Moreover, you can use audience and ICP builder tools like Primer to automatically analyze your ICP based on your CRM data and enrich your target profiles with data points from 12+ data platforms at once.
We primarily advise you to source the following attributes:
- Funding & Fundraising
- Tech stack
- Site traffic volume
- Job post
Then you’ll need to analyze the updated dataset to detect correlation points. It is essential to decide how wide or narrow your ICP profile should be. Suppose you’ll find out that your close-won deals have a 75% percent correlation with a headcount of 10-12K. If you uplevel correlation to 90%, that would mean that you narrowed down an ICP profile. Therefore, a lower share of the total audience will match it – but your message will resonate with a higher percentage of the receivers.
5. Get Approval Across All Teams
Make sure that heads of departments and C-suites at the company are in broad agreement on a newly-defined ICP. Ask them whether they want to include any additional data and see if they can act on the ICP you brought in.