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How to Define Your Ideal Customer Profile

Ideal Customer Profile

If your B2B startup is struggling to thrive, one of the reasons might be that you haven’t worked out how to define your ideal customer profile.

In this article, we’re taking a look at why this step is one of the most important factors in the growth of your business, and how to go about creating ideal customer profiles for your startup.

Why you need to define your ideal customer profile

Why you need to define your ideal customer profile

Every startup begins with the dream of becoming a success story like Ahrefs, Slack, or Basecamp. The reality is that there are a lot of moving pieces involved in growing to this level, and creating a clear picture of your ideal customer is a fundamental part of this groundwork.

If you’re in a hurry to launch and your startup is targeting “everyone,” or you simply don’t know (or care) who your potential customers are, it’s going to be hard to build out an effective marketing strategy.

Plus, you risk wasting a lot of time, energy, and money targeting prospective company’s that aren’t interested in your product.

Lighter Capital spoke to Patrick Campbell, Founder of ProfitWell, about why identifying your ideal customer profile is crucial in the startup phase:

“Everything in your business, from your sales and marketing teams to your product and operations teams, works to drive a customer to a point of conversion or justify the price and product to that customer. If you don’t know who those customers are, what they care about, what they don’t care about, and everything relevant to them, then there’s no way you can effectively build a business, let alone your pricing, marketing, product, or support. Your customer is crucial and you need to know them better than anyone else out there.”

Narrowing down your ideal customer profile makes it a lot easier to build a picture of the companies most likely to be interested in your offers. What are their needs? Do you understand their pain points? What will make their business better? How can you position your product as the perfect solution for them?

Getting clear on how to define your ideal customer should be one of your first tasks when you take your product to market.

What is an ideal customer profile?

What is an ideal customer profile

Your ideal customer profile, not to be confused with a buyer persona, or a target market, is essentially a set of characteristics that define the type of company (not the individual buyer or end user) that will find the most value in your product. As such, they’re most likely to become a long-term customer who will give significant value back to your business in the form of subscription fees, upsells, and referrals.

Creating an ideal customer profile is easier if you’re established and already have some customers, as you can find out:

  1. Who your current best customers are

  2. The value they are getting from your product

  3. Why they chose you over a competitor

  4. What characteristics these customers have in common

From here, you can create a profile of prospects that you can begin focusing your marketing efforts to reach. This group of prospects is most likely to be interested in your product and engaged with your marketing.

If you’re just starting out, you’ll have to do a bit more guesswork to figure out your ideal buyer.

4 tips to help you define your ideal customer profile

define your ideal customer profile

Creating an ideal customer profile for your business can be a daunting task. It takes a lot of time to collect the information that you need, and even more tim