“Who are the best type of clients for my business?” It’s a question everyone responsible for sales at an organisation asks themselves at some point. And it’s easy to see why. Knowing which prospects have the potential to not only start working with your company but stay with you for a long time is invaluable. It means you can prevent wasted time, effort and energy on clients who just aren’t suited to you.
But how are you able to tell what your ideal client looks like? An ideal client profile should be based on your current best clients, determining what attributes all of these best clients have in common.
Download our template to find your best clients, and take the first steps to creating an ideal client profile today.
Benefits of an Ideal Client Profile
So why create an ideal client profile? The reasons are numerous, but here’s three convincing reasons why knowing who your ideal clients are will benefit your business, how to go about identifying your current best clients plus a free template to find out who they are!
1. It Prevents Issues Down The Line
It’s an issue that many businesses encounter all too regularly, particularly in the B2B service industry. You’ve gone through the sales process, been to meetings, thrashed out a contract and signed on the dotted line, and finally – you’ve won a new client! Happy days!
But gradually, little problems start to rear their head.
You might find out that your technology isn’t compatible with the clients. They might keep having to stop using your services for periods of time due to budget constraints. They might even have their own methods and processes that they’re insistent on following, even though they’ve hired you because you’re good at what you do.
It’s nobody’s fault, but it happens. Sometimes two organisations just aren’t a good fit for each other. But using an ideal client profile can help you identify and filter out these type of problem clients early in the sales process.
Whilst we all want to win new business, we don’t want to invest the time and effort in winning it from clients who won’t last the course.
It’s much better for you and for them that you flag this up early. Then they can look for a vendor more suited to them, and you can concentrate on the clients who’ll provide real ROI.
2. It Lets You Produce Better Buyer Personas
Buyer personas are the cornerstone of a modern lead generation strategy. Whether you’re approaching your leads using outbound prospecting, social selling, inbound marketing or a combination of those, knowing as much as you can about the actual people who purchase from you will directly benefit your sales efforts.
You’ll probably have a fairly good idea of the job titles your business should be targeting from Marketing Directors and Heads of IT, to CIOs or HR Business Partners.
But not all prospects who have your target job title will be a good fit for you. Some may be at a company that, based on your experience, is too small to work well with you. Some might be working in a sector that your business traditionally isn’t suited too.
So to create buyer personas that are really going to help you connect with the prospects that matter, create your ideal client profile first.
That way, you can eliminate ‘bad fit’ companies, and only base your buyer personas on job titles at the kind of clients you want to be working with.
3. It Helps You Create Better Content
If you want to win business from a particular type of company, you should create content tailored to that company.
Really, it’s a circular process. You find out what content your ideal client profile likes to consume. You create content based around their preferences. And through that content, you end up getting leads that are much closer to being your ideal clients.
You don’t have to have a fully-fledged content creating machine, churning out 50 pieces a week. A recent survey found that almost half of buyers only consume 2-5 pieces of content before they make a purchase decision.
So in essence, it’s more worthwhile using your ideal client profile to create high-quality, targeted content. The kind that your perfect prospect will read, find worthwhile and be prompted to get in touch with you.
How to Find Your Best Clients
Your ideal client profile should be based on your current list of best clients. By looking at that current list of best clients, you can identify commonalities and shared attributes that you might not have noticed. For example, they could be concentrated in a certain geographical location. They might all fall within a particular turnover bracket, or work in the same industry.
Identifying these factors will help you to create an ideal client profile, and your aim is to win business from companies who align closely with this profile.
Often you may think a particular client is a really good fit for your business when in reality they aren’t. Despite the fact that you like them personally, when you crunch the numbers they don’t spend as much as other clients, it took a long time to get them on-board, and they are a lot more demanding.
Only when you’ve found the clients who are keeping your business in business, should you consider other more factors, like how easy they are to work with, how good the communication is, etc.
Taking into account both quantitative data, and your own personal feelings will help you work out which clients give the best boost to your bottom line, but also give you that warm fuzzy feeling inside. So let’s work out what you need to know, in order to make a list of your top 10 clients.