Before you get started building your business, an important first step is to create an ideal customer profile. Your ICP describes your perfect customer. Written as one individual, it’s not the only person who will buy from you, but the best. This is who you should focus your marketing efforts on trying to reach.
The data in your ICP determines every decision that comes afterward, so it’s important to create this profile first and foremost.
What Your ICP Should Include
A good ideal customer profile includes two types of data: demographic and psychographic.
Demographic data tells you who your target audience is. It includes things like age, location, economic status, marital status, language, and so on.
Psychographic data tells you how people think, feel, and behave, and it’s a bit trickier to obtain. However, this information is in many ways even more important than demographics. You should try to learn as much as possible about your ideal customer’s core values, their beliefs, their aspirations, and the problems and issues they face so you can help solve them.
Know Your Business
Creating your ICP should be guided by knowledge about your company. You can already tell somewhat who your products and services best serve. Consider what you offer. Who would benefit best from it?
Figure out your unique strengths and create a unique value proposition. This is a statement that describes specifically what you do and what sets you apart from other similar businesses.
If you’re already in business, look at your current customers and identify your biggest brand advocates. These are the individuals who buy most from you and interact most with you. In addition to past and current customers, you may also consider where you want your business to go. What will you be offering a year from now and who is the target market for that?
Collect and Analyze Data
A good ideal customer profile contains objective data, not assumptions. You have to connect with your target market and gather this data from them.
You can get data on your target market both directly and indirectly. Direct methods include asking questions, holding focus groups, running surveys and polls, and so on. Indirect methods include looking at social media profiles, watching and participating in online discussions, and looking at metrics such as web traffic and sales data.
Building Your Ideal Customer Profile Is Ongoing
Once you have a good ideal customer profile, you’re ready to get started planning your marketing strategy. But creating an ICP is a task that’s never truly finished. There may be changes in the market or changes in your business that will require you to update your ICP. Keep collecting data about your target market and revise accordingly. Gradually, your profile will become increasingly refined and effective.
Do you want to learn more about creating the perfect customer profile for your market? Check out the course, “IDEAL CLIENT PROFILE”, which teaches you the A to Z of creating and using your ideal customer profile and helps you achieve your business goals.
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About The Author
Pat Simes is a Business Strategist, blogger and Founder of Innovative Business Solutions and Innovate Academy. She currently resides in the Midwest and is committed to inspiring and empowering entrepreneurs to transform their vision to reality.