One of the cornerstones of any Online Business, is knowing who your Ideal Client is.

Almost all entrepreneurs and business owners make the serious mistake of avoiding this stage in the eagerness to have their website online as soon as possible, without even stopping to think about who it will be aimed at, what they are looking for, what problems they have and what solutions they need.

How to determine your ideal client profile

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What is an Ideal Client?

An Ideal Client is someone who finds the perfect solution to their problems or needs in the services or products that your company provides.

The Ideal Client will be loyal to your company, frequently uses or buys your products or services, and is likely to recommend you to their friends and colleagues.

So who is specifically the Ideal Client for your company? To answer this, you don’t need a Ph.D. in Marketing or an MBA. 

Any entrepreneur or businessman KNOWS who his/her Ideal Client is. As soon as you read the above description, your mind brings you a few clients or a general description of a potential ideal client. That “image”, it’s a rough idea of your Ideal Client Profile.

An Ideal Client Profile (ICP) is a description of the type of client who finds the perfect solution to their problems or needs in the services or products that your company provides.

Now, what is the difference between this and the popular “Buyer Persona”?

Difference Between Buyer Persona and Ideal Client Profile

Let’s use a table, so it’s more clear and visual for you:

Buyer PersonaIdeal Client Profile
DefinitionA semi-fictional representation of your Ideal Client, based on market research and real data about your existing customers.A description of the type of client who finds the perfect solution to their problems or needs in the services or products that your company provides.
Information includedSuper detailed information including demographics, psychographics (motivations, fears, interests, behaviors), buying behavior, customer journey, etc.Basic information such as demographic data (age, income, location) in B2C or company data (industry, company size, location, revenue) in B2B.
Use in Digital MarketingUsed to create targeted digital marketing campaigns, tailor-made ads and marketing messages, super-focused customer journeys, and digital marketing funnels.Used to identify potential markets, create general digital marketing campaigns, qualify leads, guide sales strategy, and product development.
FocusFocuses on the individual customer’s needs, behaviors, and pain points.Focuses on the overall best fit for the company’s products or services.


That being said… which one should you use? Both!

First, you need to create your Ideal Client profile (ICP). Once you have it, it’s time to go after Buyer Personas.

Each Ideal Client profile has multiple Buyer Personas. Let’s see a visual example:

Ideal Client Profile with multiple buyer pesonas
Ideal Client Profile with multiple buyer pesonas

Creating a Buyer Persona requires having Digital Marketing skills, Analytics & Data Analysis skills, and data, lots of data to analyze! 

Creating an Ideal Client Profile, on the other hand, is more simple, as we saw in the previous section, as you already have an “imagine” in your mind. It’s more obvious, every business owner knows who your best clients are… if not, you’re going to hit problems.

So, the starting point is to create your Ideal Client profile. Once you have that defined, and have used it for quite some time (data), you will reach the moment to create your buyer persona.

Many online businesses start with the buyer persona profile, without having defined their ideal client profile… which I think is a BIG mistake. 

Creating a buyer persona before having an ideal client profile is a waste of time. It’s like trying to choose what position you’d like to play when you’ve never even played soccer or rugby before. It doesn’t make any sense.

Creating your ideal client profile

What is an Ideal Client Profile?

An Ideal Client Profile (ICP) is a description of the type of client who finds the perfect solution to their problems or needs in the services or products that your company provides.

It includes demographic characteristics, needs & challenges, and shopping behavior insights.

Now, why is this the cornerstone of your online business success?

Why defining your Ideal Client Profile is so important?

Suppose your target to everyone on your website. Why do I have to limit my focus to ONLY one type of client? 

The answer is quite simple:
– save money and resources,
– improve your customer retention and product development,
– better customer service,
– focus,
– and increase your profitability… allowing you, finally, to scale your online business

Let’s see this in detail:

  • Save money and resources
    The difference between firing with a machine gun or a sniper rifle. How many bullets do you need for each?
    This is going to directly impact your marketing and advertising efforts, by just focusing on those persons that are more likely to purchase (as they have a perfect fit to solve their problems or needs), and not wasting time, money, and resources on people that just are NOT the right fit for your business.
    This will streamline your marketing and advertising strategy, proving a great alignment across agencies or teams inside an online business. A lot of time and resources are wasted when this is not defined and available for all the digital marketing teams.
  • Improve Customer Retention
    Your Ideal clients are not just those who are more likely to buy your product or service, but also those who are more likely to become repeat and LOYAL customers of your business. By focusing on these clients only, you will have higher Customer Lifetime Value, which is more cost-effective than constantly acquiring new customers. This will decrease your costs, and increase your revenue.
  • Improve Product Development
    Dealing just with your ideal clients, will guide your product development process in their direction, which is going to make your products or services even more appealing to them, decreasing even more your acquisition costs, improving your lifetime value, higher customer satisfaction, etc. You’ll know what features to prioritize, a better price point, and even how to improve the user experience.
  • Better Customer Service
    When you understand your ideal client, you can provide better customer service tailored to their needs. This can lead to higher customer satisfaction and positive word-of-mouth, helping you attract more ideal clients.
    If you continuously improve your product development and user experience… your customer service need decreases big time.
  • Increase Profitability
    By targeting JUST (yes, only them) your ideal clients, you will have higher profitability, as not only your Customer Acquisition Costs will decrease, but also your Customer Lifetime Value will increase.
    How to improve profitability? Decreasing costs and increasing incomes… and that’s what focusing ONLY on your ideal clients will provide to you.
  • Focus
    Defining your ideal client helps you maintain a clear focus in the crowded online marketplace, thereby making your online business more effective, efficient, and successful. This is MANDATORY in today’s world, as there are so many competitors and opportunities that it’s incredibly easy to lose focus… which can lead to increased costs, wasted time and effort, and ultimately, stress and burnout for you and your teams.
  • Scale your Online Business
    By focusing ALL your efforts on the right type of client, you are setting up the basis to launch a Scale Program for your online business: the teams are aligned, you have a healthy Customer Acquisition Cost and Customer Lifetime Value, your profitability is increasing, money spends and resources are efficient, your Product Development is on the right path… it’s the right time to scale then.

Now that you know why to create your ideal client profile, it’s time to know how to create an Ideal Client Profile.

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How to create your Ideal Client Profile (ICP)

As we already saw, your ideal client profile it’s a description of the type of client that finds the best solution to their problems or needs in your services or products.

This is not as deep as creating buyer personas. It’s much simpler, and it’s extremely powerful for your online business.

Here are the fields you need to CONSIDER… and I say consider, because they act as a guide, you don’t need to have ALL of them, just those relevant to your business, and for those that you have data or facts, not guesses.

We will divide them into B2C and B2B:

Ideal Client Profile for B2C

B2C

  • Demographic information
    • Age Range: What age range does your ideal customer fall into?
    • Gender: Is your product or service oriented to a specific gender?
    • Location: Where do your customers live? This could be as broad as a country or as specific as cities, regions, etc. 
    • Education Level or Occupation: What level of education has your ideal customer achieved? What field do they work in? What job roles do they have? Work-related information.
    • Personal Information: Marital Status/Family? Are they single, married, do they have children? Are they a Home Owner?
  • Needs & Challenges
    • Product Needs: What specific needs does your product fulfill for your ideal client? This could be anything from satisfying a special desire to meeting a basic need like water.
    • Service Needs: How does it make your ideal client’s life easier or better? Does it save them time? Does it provide them with valuable knowledge or skills?
    • Emotional Needs: Many purchasing decisions are driven by emotion. Does your product or service make the consumer feel happy, secure, confident, or another positive emotion?
    • Challenges: What obstacles or challenges does your ideal customer face that your product or service can help overcome? This could be anything from a lack of time to a lack of knowledge in a certain area, or a certain problem or issue.
  • Shopping Behaviour
    • Online Shopping Habits: Do they frequently shop online? If so, which websites do they prefer? Do they use mobile or desktop more often for shopping?
    • Purchasing Triggers: What events or circumstances prompt them to make a purchase? This could be anything from a seasonal change to a birthday or wedding.
    • Life Events: Many people are likely to seek out certain products or services during specific life events. Some examples:
      • Buying a house
      • Having a baby
      • Graduating from college
      • Getting a pet
      • Starting a business
      • Retiring
    • Decision-Making Process: How do they decide what to buy? Do they conduct extensive research, or do they make impulse purchases?
    • Price Sensitivity: How much does price influence their purchasing decision? Are they willing to pay more for higher quality, or do they prioritize finding the best deal?
Ideal Client Profile for B2B

B2B

  • Demographic information
    • Industry: What industry or industries does your ideal client operate in?
    • Company Size: How many employees does the company have? What’s their average annual revenue?
    • Location: Where do your customers live? This could be as broad as a country or as specific as cities, regions, etc. This is super important.
    • Market Position: Is the company a market leader, a challenger, or a niche player?
    • Decision-Maker Role: Who in the company is responsible for making purchasing decisions related to your product or service? What is their job role and level of seniority?
      Here you can use fields from the B2C above.
  • Needs & Challenges
    • Product Needs or Service Needs: What are the company’s key objectives, and how can your product or service help them achieve these goals? What specific needs does your product fulfill for your ideal client? How does it make your ideal client’s life easier or better?
    • Financial Needs: Can your product or service help the company increase revenue, reduce costs, or achieve other financial goals?
    • Challenges: What are the key challenges the company faces that your product or service can help overcome? Is it any specific pain that your product or service helps to solve?
  • Shopping Behaviour
    • Research Habits: B2B buyers often conduct extensive online research before making a purchase decision. What websites or platforms do they use for this research?
    • Buying Process: B2B buying processes are often more complex than B2C, involving multiple decision-makers and a longer timeline. What does this process look like for your ideal client?
    • Evaluation Criteria: What factors do they consider when evaluating potential vendors or products? This could include price, product features, customer service, etc.
    • Vendor Relationships: B2B buyers often value strong relationships with their vendors. How important is this to your ideal client, and what can you do to foster such a relationship?
    • Use some of the B2C questions, if you have isolated a person or a role:
      • Online Shopping Habits: Do they frequently shop online? If so, which websites do they prefer? Do they use mobile or desktop more often for shopping?
      • Purchasing Triggers: What events or circumstances prompt them to make a purchase? This could be anything from a seasonal change to a life event like a birthday or wedding.
      • Decision-Making Process: How do they decide what to buy? Do they conduct extensive research, or do they make impulse purchases?
      • Price Sensitivity: How much does price influence their purchasing decision? Are they willing to pay more for higher quality, or do they prioritize finding the best deal?

Step by step to create your Ideal Client Profile

The only way to create a profile of your ideal client, it’s to be progressive. 

Why progressive? Because that’s how this works in real life. You NEVER have all the answers, you gradually learn from experience and your online business, and with that, you improve your profile, quarter by quarter, year by year.

This is the best step-by-step process that we have found after decades of experimentation with different online businesses:

  • Step #1 – Answer the questions
    Use our Ideal Client Profile Template, and start answering the questions with the knowledge you have, if you work alone, or answer them in a consensus with your team. Rely on your own expertise and experience in your industry.
    The most difficult questions are the ones from “Shopping Behavior”, and sometimes the ones from “Needs & Challenges” if you don’t have much experience in your online business.
  • Step #2 – Use Chat GPT to fill in the informational gaps
    Now, we will use today’s AI benefits, in order to accelerate the process 🙂
    Open Chat GPT, and then paste the following prompt completing with your data:

    Hello, I run an online business that specializes in [describe your products or services]. We primarily serve customers in the [describe your target market or demographic]. Our main goal is to [describe your main business goal or objective].
    I’m currently working on creating an ideal client profile to better understand our target customers and how we can serve them more effectively.

    Here are the details I completed:


    [Paste from our template the answers you already completed. Try to order them, by adding numbers are the beginning, so you provide order to info you inject into Chat GPT]

    I need help with researching and filling in the following details:
    [Paste from our template the answers you didn’t complete. But NOT ALL TOGETHER, start with just 1, once you get this information from Chat GPT, move to the next one. Don’t paste all the questions together, or it will make Chat GPT delay a lot of time, and pause]

    Could you assist me in gathering this information and completing my ideal client profile?

    Once Chat GPT provides you with your first question, move to the next one with the following prompt:

    Thanks. Now I need help with researching and filling in the following details:


    [Paste your next question from your template]

    Could you assist me in gathering this information and completing my ideal client profile?
  • Step #3 – Process Chat GPT research
    After a few minutes, and some browsing on Chat GPT, you will get this info.
    Now, bear in mind that this is JUST information that Chat GPT gathers online and processes along with the information it has in its huge database.
    Now, it’s time for you to validate them. Sometimes, you won’t find good information with Chat GPT, so your ideal client profiles will continue to be incomplete… and that’s fine! As I mentioned at the beginning, this is a gradual and progressive process that takes a lot of time to complete.
  • Step #4 – Continuous improvement
    Now that you have the first draft of your Ideal Client Profile, it’s time to review it every time you have new information to add, or a correction to make based on new experience.
    This is a never-ending process, in which you will complete, edit, remove, and add information.

You MUST continue working on this profile, and maybe you will find a NEW profile for your online business, and your business journey needs to iterate and forget about for your first ideal client, as the new one is much more profitable, or both can coexist in a profitable environment. 

I don’t recommend you start creating Buyer Personas based on your ideal client profile unless you can hire a dedicated Digital Marketing team, and money and time to invest in them.

Just focus on your ideal client profile, and use it to drive revenue and alignment. Once you are ready to scale your business, move to the Buyer Persona Profiles.

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Example of an Ideal Client Profile for a Real Online Business

Here is a real ideal client profile, from one of our partners, which we improved by using Chat GPT with the following plugins: WebPilot, KeyMate.AI, ScholarAI, and Prompt Perfect.

Ideal Client Profile 1

  • Demographics:
    • Industry: Luxury Hair Care
    • Age: 30-45 years
    • Gender: Female
    • Location: Major cities in the USA (e.g., New York, Los Angeles, Chicago)
    • Occupation: Professional in high-paying industries (e.g., finance, law, tech)
    • Income Level: $100,000+ per year
    • Education Level: Master’s degree or higher
  • Needs & Challenges:
    • Product Needs: This client is interested in luxury shampoo and hair care products that deliver salon-quality results at home. She values products that are formulated for specific hair types and concerns (e.g., color-treated hair, dry hair, etc.).
    • Service Needs: She appreciates fast, reliable shipping and high-end packaging that reflects the luxury nature of the products. She also values excellent customer service and detailed product information.
    • Challenges: She often struggles to find luxury hair care products that meet her specific needs and deliver noticeable results. She also finds it challenging to justify the high cost of these products without clear information about their benefits and ingredients.
  • Online Behaviors:
    • Social Media Usage: She is active on Instagram and LinkedIn, where she follows several luxury brands and influencers. She often discovers new products through these platforms.
    • Website Preferences: She prefers sleek, minimalist websites with high-quality product photos and detailed information about the product’s benefits and ingredients.
    • Online Shopping Habits: She frequently shops online and prefers websites that offer fast, reliable shipping and high-end packaging. She often reads product reviews and researches the product ingredients before making a purchase.
  • Buying Behavior:
    • Purchasing Triggers: She often makes purchases when she discovers a new product through a luxury brand or influencer, or when she needs to restock her favorite products. She is also likely to make a purchase when she has a special event coming up and wants her hair to look its best.
    • Decision-Making Process: She conducts extensive research before making a purchase, reading product reviews and researching the product ingredients. She considers the product’s quality, the brand’s reputation, and the product’s specific benefits for her hair type and concerns.
    • Price Sensitivity: While she is willing to pay a premium for high-quality, luxury hair care products, she still expects these products to deliver noticeable results and to be formulated with high-quality, beneficial ingredients.

As you can see, it’s more simplified and general than a Buyer Persona, as this is the precursor of it.

Once you have been using your Ideal Client Profile for some time  (you might have more than one), you will have that feeling of “being short”, that your team and campaigns need more details, more segmentation… and here, at this exact moment, is when you need to start developing the buyer personas from your ideal client profile.

Good luck with this process, and reach out to us at FJ Solutions if we can help you develop and target your Ideal Clients!

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