This template will help you define your ideal customer profile and align your teams on the filters and signals you use for account targetting.
An ICP is an outline of your ideal customer—the ones you want more of. The ones who buy from you consistently and tell others about their experiences. The customers that do not churn. The customers that had a real pain and clearly saw your value proposition. The customers that had the shortest sales cycles and lowest sales friction.
Your ICP provides guidelines to your sales and marketing teams. It tells them which companies are a great fit—and what they should look for to find more like them. It should be the “North Star” for your team as they build your customer base.
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When to use this template
Use this template after you've conducted a basic situational analysis using your existing customer base and identified your company's most attractive beachheads (see sections 5.4 & 5.5 for more details.)
Build your ICP around those likely to provide feedback
If you're pre-product-market fit you won't have much existing data to look at. In this stage, it can be better to optimize your ideal customer profile for accounts that are likely to give you a ton of feedback. At this point you want to collect inputs to improve the way your product is fitting the market, so you can then build for product-market Fit. When you're still in the MVP stage, your ICP shouldn't be about how big an account is, it should be about their willingness to test your product and participate in building it with you. You may need to focus more on psychographics and job-to-be-done characteristics to segment the market.
Build your ICP around your beachheads
When you’ve reached product-market fit, firmographics, technographics and demographics are good primary methods for segmentation. The first thing you should do is analyze your existing customer dataset. Are there any trends in the data that create a cluster or a “beachhead” that represents customers you want more of? Marketing beachheads are the parts of the market where you have an established position of strength you can build upon. It is where you can win and claim a defendable leadership position.