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Targeting your ideal customer profile

By Jonny Holden

Published April 23, 2024

Updated April 26, 2024

A simple idea for focusing on your ideal customer profile (ICP) from Dave Kellog. The real focus is on the bulls-eye. That ideal customer, the one who really gets what you're about, and happily gives you money. It'll take some practice to figure out who that is, but know that it's a small target.

You'll probably "hit" some other customer profiles, but as each arrow lands, ask yourself if this is your true ICP.

And sure, sometimes you'll take money from customers in the outer ring. But they are a distraction. Don't waste resources on them. Focus. Breathe. Pull back the bow.

Jason Cohen goes on to ask, in Selling to Carol, "But how do you pick, and how do you avoid excluding everyone else, reducing your target market to a tiny niche?"

Well, you pick one Carol. One existing customer who perfectly matches what you offer. Think about your product from her point of view. Think about her problems, and how your product helps her. Write those problems down from her point of view, the way she would describe them if complaining to a friend over lunch. Whatever advantages you have over your competitors, Carol needs exactly those things. Whatever makes people love you, Carol has those attributes. Whatever makes people continue paying for the product forever, Carol has that. List all these things.

Other customers will buy, even if they are not your ICP. And the further from the center they are, the less you should worry about them cancelling, or listen to their criticism or requests.

If Carol says "Jump", you say "How high?" If Carol quits, you ask why? Is there something wrong with your product? Or maybe Carol isn't the ICP you thought she was, and you need to think again.

As always, read the original article from Jason. He's one of the best.

This post is dedicated to Dr Detko, as she struggles to find her ICP.