ICP and a buyer persona

Your team might be spending hours and days trying to convert Marketing Qualified Leads, but no matter how hard they try or what they do, the conversions are not coming.

Poor sales processes might get quick to get blamed. However, that’s not always the case. If the quality of the leads entering your sales pipeline isn’t high enough, no sales effort will suffice to tip them over the line and convert them into your loyal customers. More than 50% of an average sales activation campaign budget is wasted on unqualified traffic and leads. And the only thing you could do to reduce that wasted spending is to narrow down your outreach on the best-suited target.

If you aren’t familiar with the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) term, it describes a client who will get the highest benefits from your products while giving the highest value in return to your business. If you are a B2C or B2B company struggling to stay afloat, it might be a consequence of overlooking the essence of an ICP in your sales activation strategy.

An ICP describes the ideal customer you should be targeting with your marketing and to whom you should offer your services and products.
For a B2B company, the ICP is an imaginary description of the company or organization you wish to attract to your brand. This is usually the company with the most successful and fastest sales cycle, highest customer retention rates, and the best ambassadors for your brand. Your ICP, in this case, includes the ideal company size, location, and revenue, among other data relevant to your sales activation approach.

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What is the difference between Buyer Persona, ICP and Target Market

The description of an Ideal Customer Profile might somewhat mirror that of a buyer persona. Nevertheless, there are stark differences between these terms standard in target marketing (account-based marketing). In most cases, ICPs are used for B2B marketing.

In B2B marketing, an ICP is a set of characteristics of a fictitious company that is most likely to invest in your products or services and actualize a high return for your company. A buyer persona refers to the people involved in a purchasing decision at the company that makes up your ICP.

The details of your ideal customer profile will often inform your buyer persona. Still, the latter is defined by demographic attributes like job title, income, seniority, function, and role. Most important, you should understand the challenges of your buyer persona and how your product will solve them.

Simply put, a buyer persona is primarily used for buyer enablement marketing and is focused on individuals in a company, like a project manager or sales manager. On the other hand, an ICP zooms out of a buyer persona to focus on an entire organization. Usually, you will need both an ICP and a buyer persona to achieve the highest benefits in account-based marketing.

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