How to create your Ideal Customer Profile

A well defined Ideal Customer Profile can make or break your business. Businesses take months if not years to create an Ideal Customer Profile.

But what is Ideal Customer profile anyway?

Ideal customer profile defines the kind of customers who are most fruitful revenue generating buyers for your product or services.

They are the ones because of whom your business is in good shape. They are the ones who give you the most referrals. They are the ones who give you good word of mouth.

They are the ones for whom you would like to build a new feature in your product. They are the ones for whom you would like to run a new sales or marketing campaign and like to get them to buy your product or service.

There is no universal defining of an Ideal Customer Profile but you may think of these customers as your dream customers.

How to create an Ideal customer profile?

Its a long and iterative process and involves experimentation.

Its always good to choose your customers. If you are lucky enough to choose your customers then you are in a good shape of your business.

A good customer can bring more customers but a bad customer can kill your brand, waste your resources and make you lose your focus and energy on unnecessary things that will hurt your business in the long run.

When UBER started their business in San Francisco their ideal customers were the wall street people who can afford to pay for a luxury sedan.

UBER started out their marketing by putting up kiosks in places where people like these gathered a lot and had money to pay for a luxury sedan.

UBER did not offered any lost cost rides at the beginning because they wanted these rich folks to tell other rich folks about UBER Services.

These folks can afford easily and would not bother to try UBER service. If they liked it would be a big hit. Which happened in UBER case eventually.

There are three methods to create an ideal customer profile:

  • Market based approach
  • Account based approach
  • Lookalike based approach

Market based approach for Ideal Customer Profile

In the market based approach you define your Ideal customer based on their firmographic and demographic attributes.

This approach is used when you want to reach out to customers based on their industry, location, size or other firmographic factors OR you don’t have specific companies in mind that you want to reach out OR your market is broad in size.

Lets say you are a customer support solution provider. Your ideal buyers are the ones who will need customer support tools to assist their own customers.

While making this ideal customer profile you will have to understand what kind of customers are more likely to buy a customer support tool.

In case of a customer support tool the companies who are in B2C space and have a more web traffic will be a good fit for this customer support tool.

So instead of randomly targeting companies who start with companies who are in B2C space and have a decent web traffic.

Based on your initial testing of doing outbound outreach aka cold emails to these prospects you understand what is the response rate and closure rates.

After that you can improvise your Ideal customer profile based on who all shows more interest to your customer support tool.

Firmographic attributes in Ideal Customer Profile

  • Industry like Real Estate, Internet, Consumer Goods etc.
  • Size of the company – Startups, SME, Mid sized, Enterprise customers
  • Location of your Ideal customers – City, State or Country
  • Company type – Ecommerce, SAAS, Product or service based company
  • Estimated Revenue
  • Business model i.e B2B or B2C
  • Monthly web traffic
  • Their recent activities like funding, hiring, product launches, top level changes
  • Other company attribute

Demographic attributes of Ideal Customer Profile

  • Title of the buyers or influencers
  • Department of the buyers
  • Authority of the buyers or level of the buyers in the organisation
How to create Ideal Customer Profile

You can use tools like EasyLeadz to define your Ideal customer profiles based on persona of your buyers.

The more precise your Ideal customer profile is the better your outreach will be and eventually your response rate.

If you are reaching out to ecommerce companies then your approach to these companies will be having a different cold email subject line or cold email copy which will give you better results.

Personalisation can be done based on ideal customer profile. The higher the personalisation the better is your response rate.

One most important profile attribute is the title of the prospects based on the size of the company. Cold emails generally do not work on CEO’s of large size companies.

If you are reaching out to founder of a 500+ employee size company for a chat bot solution then do you think s(he) will care to reply you back? Most likely s(he) wont.

So you will have to define your targeting based on the size of the company and the title at-least if not something else.

Account based approach for Ideal Customer Profile

Account based marketing approach works when you have specific company names that you want to target. This approach is defined based on a limited market.

If you are selling to only Fortune 100 companies. So your target market and approach for selling and reach out to these prospects will be more relationship driven than outbound approach.

Cold email generally do not work on account based marketing approach.

Account based marketing or ABM is used when you have a high ticket product or service and you want to focus on certain companies that you believe are more suited as a buyer.

EasyLeadz offers a free email finder tool using which you can find contacts in specific companies.

EasyLeadz email finder tool

Lookalike based approach for Ideal Customer Profile

Lookalike based marketing approach in B2B sales is used when you already have certain companies using your products or services.

You can define your ideal customer profile based on the attributes of your existing customers.

Example: If all of your existing companies are ecommerce companies and they are based out of United States and they have an employee size of 50 then you can use these attributes to create an ideal customer profile.

The more attributes you can pick up from your existing customers the better your targeting becomes for your B2B sales campaign.

Furthermore you can also check who all your existing users and their titles. If founders are using your product then you should reach out to more and more founders.

As said the better your Ideal customer profile is defined the better your outreach is and the higher your response rates will be for your outbound campaigns.

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How To Get Quality Clients For an E-Learning Business

Getting quality leads and clients for any business is a process in itself. E-learning business can also create a quality and consistent lead generation channel for getting quality clients for their business.

We are going to focus on outbound sales for this post and how outbound sales can improve lead generation for your e-learning business.

When you are in E-learning business you may want to reach out to following personas:

  • Corporates for placement opportunities or staffing opportunities.
  • Schools or Universities.
  • Academy or professional training organisations.

I will explain how you can reach out to all three personas and create a consistent quality lead generation channel.

Persona One: Corporates

While reaching out to corporates define your Ideal Customer Profile as in what kind of corporates will be more likely to work with you or buy your product or services.

Example : If you are into student placements and these students are specially trained in digital marketing courses then you need to optimise your outbound sales and targeting to companies who are more likely to hire for digital marketing roles.

Targeting segment A : Recently funded companies

Recently funded companies will be in active hiring mode as they have to expand their business and grow fast with the money they have received in funding.

Thus, any company that is into staffing or student placements should reach out to recently funded startups.

EasyLeadz sales intelligence platform can automatically track recently funded startups and find out the right decision maker in these companies and reach out to them.

Recently funded startups

While reaching out to these companies you will have to optimise your content including a good email subject line and keep your content short.

People generally don’t like lengthy emails as no one has time to read. If you write a short email that addresses their problems and how your can solve their problem they may be interested to talk to you further.

Writing a good B2B cold email and have a sales follow up strategy will improve your response rates.

Targeting segment B : Actively hiring companies

Companies that are actively hiring are anyways on hiring spree. It means you must track and reach out to them as the timing is perfect for them to understand more about your staffing services.

If you want to reach out to actively hiring companies then you can either use Google job search or track job portals or use an automated sales automation tool like EasyLeadz.

Actively hiring companies

Targeting segment C : Market wide targeting by company attributes

The other targeting method is based on industry and market.

You can target companies by their industry and other attributes like if they an Ecommerce company, SAAS company or if they are a BPO or call centre.

Depending upon the courses your E-learning business provides you can always optimise your targeting by specific industry.

If you provide BPO related courses then reaching out to all BPO’s with a certain size of the company is an ideal option.

You can read a case study on how Upgrad is generating quality leads using outbound sales.

Persona Two: Schools or Universities

The other outreach is when you want to tie up with Schools or Universities for your online certifications.

This could be a bulk deal as these schools may divert students to your portal in bulk. One deal with a school can cover up your 80% of the revenues if you are focussing on individual students for now.

The decision makers in schools are generally the owners and not professors or teachers.

Principals may be the influencers but the decision is mostly taken up by the owner of the school.

Using EasyLeadz you can create a targeting criterion of reaching out to all schools or universities in a specific area and EasyLeadz can automatically start finding and reaching out to the Directors of these schools or universities.

Persona Three: Academy or professional training organisations

The last targeting option is to tie up with other Academy or professional training organisations for cross sales opportunities.

Finding and reaching out to these companies is a big task in itself. You can google search these companies and can find 100+ companies but you will have to spend man power in order to create a good quality prospect list.

The other option is to use the advanced machine learning based company research tool which can instantly find academy or coaching institutes as per your targeting criterion.

List of Academy in India

The academy targeting can also work as a bulk cross promotional deal for your E-learning business.

At the end its all about optimising your targeting and qualifying companies the right way. Spend less time on manual prospecting and scale your sales prospecting with the right tools.

You can also invest this saved time on more important tasks like customers calls.

The key to good outbound sales is understand when your buyer has a need and who has a need and when you can reach out to them.

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How to get quality clients for a staffing agency

There are over 100,000+ staffing companies in India. Getting quality clients for a staffing business is hard.

I am going to share few tips on how you can generate quality leads for your staffing business. The tips are focussed on outbound sales. You can also generate leads via content marketing or inbound marketing.

I recommend to read Hubspot blog on inbound marketing.

Lets focus on outbound sales for now and see how you can improve your B2B lead generation for your staffing agency.

Target recently funded companies

In order to generate quality leads for any business the first step is to understand your Ideal customer profile or to say which kind of companies will be more likely to do business with you.

Startups who have recently raised funding will be the one who have just got money in their bank. The next thing these startups do is expand their business into multiple geographies or operational expansion.

Thus, these companies will have immediate need for hiring more staffing both technical and non-technical.

You can use EasyLeadz sales intelligence platform and setup an EasyBot which can automatically track recently funded startups daily and find the right decision makers in those companies.

Next step is to reach out to these companies.

EasyBot can automatically send personalised emails to these companies and if your prospects do not reply back then EasyBot can automatically follow up with these prospects so as to improve your response rates.

List of recently funded startups capture by EasyBot

While reaching out to these companies make sure your email is personalised and have a good email follow up strategy.

Always prefer to write short subject lines and include a call to action in your B2B cold email.

You can refer to cold email templates that we have written for our community based on experience of sending 100,000+ emails.

Track companies that are actively hiring

The companies that are actively hiring are already telling you that they have a hiring need. Now only difference is to figure out which companies are keen to outsource their hiring needs and which want to do it in-house.

You can always optimise your targeting to these companies by using industry and location as qualification criterion.

On top of it you can only reach out to companies that are hiring for roles that your staffing company has expertise to fill in.

Some staffing companies are expert in IT roles and some are in manufacturing roles. So depending on your business expertise you can narrow down your Ideal customer profile and target the right companies for your business.

EasyBot can also track companies hiring for specific roles and you can reach out to those companies by activating EasyBot and putting it on auto pilot mode.

Once it is on auto pilot mode you can relax as EasyBot captures companies daily, find the decision maker and reach out to those companies all by itself.

Track actively hiring companies

Track by company attributes

Your staffing company may have a specific niche that you have expertise in.

Most of the sales people spend hours in manual research and thats why they don’t do it. They simply use industry, location and few other parameters as qualifying criterion and do their outreach to these companies.

This may result in very broad targeting and your outreach may not give you the desired results.

Instead of that target companies by their attributes like if your business has expertise in BPO hiring then target companies which are in BPO business.

This way you will have better B2B targeting and high quality list.

EasyBot has the capability to give your a search criterion by company attributes.

You can target companies like BPO, Call Center, Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, Fintech companies and many more other company attributes.

You can even target companies by their business model i.e if they are ecommerce companies, service based companies, product company or others.

EasyBot BPO companies list

The key is to define a perfect Ideal customer profile and apply sales intelligence on top of it to improve your qualification criterion.

This improves your targeting and further improves your quality lead generation process.

If you have a better targeting then the resources spend on generating leads is also less and your conversion will also improve.

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5 killer cold email subject lines that will improve open rate

Sending cold emails is a part of every sales person life. Be it a inside sales rep or a founder, cold email is your weapon when it comes to scaling your B2B sales.

Personalisation is the key to outbound sales. Imagine if you get an email from a stranger and the subject line of that email has your name in it versus a generic email with a generic subject line. Which one will you open over the other?

The one that has your name on it will be more likely to get opened because it feels connected.

I am sharing 5 killer cold email subject lines which will improve your cold email open rates and thus response rates.

Cold email subject line 1: Nitin, quick question

This subject line is super short and has first name of the prospect in it. Its also referring to a question in the body of the email thus its driving your prospect to open the email and look for the question.

Cold email subject line 2: Looking for a sales contacts in EasyLeadz

This subject line is asking your prospect about the right contact in a particular department in their company.

So two personalisations are mentioned in the subject line. One a name of department and second is the name of the company.

Cold email subject line 3: Quick, can we talk?

This subject line is asking a direct question whether your prospect is interested to have a quick call or not. Its no bullshit approach and being direct and saves lot of time on both the sides.

Cold email subject line 4: Nitin, you checked our website

This subject line has worked really well for us. This prompts the prospect in thinking that someone from their organisation or them have already shown interest in your product and you want to initiate that discussion further.

Cold email subject line 5: Nitin, need more productivity in sales?

This cold email subject line attacks the problem of the prospect i.e whether they want to improve their sales or not. You can include the problem your product solves for them.

It also has a personalisation i.e first name of the prospect.

Remember the key to get good response rate will be in the cold email copy or the cold email templates that you have as well as what kind of businesses you are targeting.

Targeting the right audience is first step before even thinking of writing an effective cold email.

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7 quick ways your startup can increase quality b2b leads

Every startup founder nightmare is sales. As they say “Sales can cure everything“. Generating b2b leads is not an easy task specially for founders. At one side you want to focus on product or technology i.e the love of your life and at other you have to grow sales that will ensure your startup lives. One of the biggest reason of startup failure is not getting product market fit and in early days of your startup journey it takes lot of experimentation to get to a point of PMF. This becomes even harder for B2B startups. Sales cycles are long and you may not have experience of doing one to one sales and on top of all : how to get someone showing interest in your B2B startup? The fastest way to grow your business is by doing fast experimentation with different segments of customers.

Create different targeting segments of customers

The process of getting more b2b leads and finding product market fit is by understanding which type of customers resonate with our products or services. The best way to do that is by creating multiple targeting segments. Example: If you are into software testing business then create segments like following:
  • Companies with employee size 1-10 and 11-50 (SME’s) that are having mobile apps and are based out of a specific location.
  • Companies with employee size 1-10 and 11-50 that are ecommerce companies and are based out of a specific location.
  • Recently funded Companies that have 1-10 and 11-50 number of employees.
  • Actively hiring companies for software testers and that have more than 500 employees.
If you look at above 4 segments each of these have different companies attributes. Sending them same email copy will not give you better results. In Segment A the roles/titles responsible will be founders/CEO and CTO’s. Thus the email subject line and copy has to be in line with your targeting. By having different segments you will also be able to measure which one performs better.  You can spend more resources later on that particular segment to grow your b2b leads and find product market fit. EasyLeadz sales automation solution gives you this ability to create multiple targeting criterion’s and run targeting bots on them.

Create lookalike audience for improving b2b leads

If you already have 10 customers the next step is to get to 100 customers. You can create lookalike audience similar to your existing 10 customers. Find following info using Linkedin for your 10 customers and understand their patterns.
  • No of employees: How many employees these companies have?
  • Industry: Which industry they fall into?
  • HQ location: Where are they based out of?
  • Title/Roles who made decision: Who decided to buy or use your software/service?
  • Tech stack: What kind of tools/technologies they use?
  • Type of company: B2B or B2C?
Any other info: SAAS companies, Ecommerce companies, Fintech companies etc. Once you have a pattern then you just need to put your sales efforts in attracting and targeting those type of companies. We have made an excel sheet that you can use to create your own lookalike audience. b2b leads using lookalike audience Easyleadz

You can create a similar lookalike audience matcher for yourself to target such companies at scale and get more b2b leads.

Create targeting personas of titles/roles

The right way is by targeting the right person who is either responsible for making purchase decision or the user of the product. If you will create an excel sheet like above then you will understand which roles are the decision makers of your product or service. The next targeting campaign or piece of content you make should ideally focus on their pain points and how to address them. This way your response rates and conversion will improve and eventually your b2b leads.

A/B test email subject line and body of email

Email copy and subject lines are super critical. We have worked with various customers and helped them improve their email subject line. Having a good email subject line improves your open rates and if you have a good email copy it improves your response rates & b2b leads. The subject line often comes from the roles/titles you are targeting. We at EasyLeadz use following subject lines when our EasyBot targets companies for us:-
  • Nitin, Quick question?
  • Looking for a sales contact in your company
  • Nitin, do you need virtual sales assistants to find leads for you?
  • Quick, can we talk?
  • Nitin, you checked our website?

Create multi channel targeting approach

Depending on your targeting market you can create a multi channel targeting approach. We target companies over email using our EasyBot and simultaneously target the same people over Linkedin using our integration with ORCA. This way if our target user do not reply us over email they may reply us over Linkedin thus improving our response rates and b2b leads.

Use email automation tool to improve follow up responses

Sales people often send email to their prospects and then expect them to reply. HBR says that prospects are more likely to reply you back on 2nd or 3rd email. So having a follow up strategy is mandatory if you want to scale your b2b leads. There are many tools in the market like or ReplyUp or Mailshake that you can use to setup your automated email campaigns and follow up emails. EasyLeadz has this already integrated right from finding the companies to target, finding the decision makers and automatically sending them emails and follow up emails. All in one.

Use virtual sales assistants to scale sales

If you have a small team and you want to scale quickly then outsourcing can be helpful. But be careful when you outsource to someone. Its important to have control on your targeting specially if you are in early stage of your product market fit. One bad targeting can spoil your efforts and limited resources. That’s the reason lot of startup founders prefer Easyleadz AI based virtual sales assistant that can act like your own sales person. Its a machine that works like your sales assistant and grow b2b leads. It can perform tasks like finding the companies as per your targeting criterion, finding who are the right decision makers and then automatically sending them email campaigns.

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