Sales and marketing

Who Are Your Target Customers (Now)?


Knowing our customers, focusing on defining who they are, what they are trying to achieve, how we help them is critical to our success. Staying focused on these customers–the one’s we help the most, and with whom we are most successful, our ICP is critical.

Yet too often, as we look at our marketing, prospecting, and our pipelines, we attempt to reach everyone that fogs a mirror. If we are challenged to “find more,” rather than focus on where we have the biggest impact–narrowing our search for prospects, we cast a wider net, inflicting meaningless messages on customers we can’t help and don’t care. We waste the prospect’s time, our time, and our brand equity.

Author: David Brock, president, Partners in Excellence
LinkedIn: David Brock of Partners in Excellence

Recently, I worked with a company that had done a good job in categorizing their customers. They had over 100 different industry/market categories of customers. Sixty percent of the revenue came from one category, another 22% came from four other categories. And 18% of their revenue came from the remaining 95 categories.

As you would guess, win rates in the top five categories were very high with win rates in the remaining categories in the single to low double digits.

Yet marketing and prospecting efforts were unfocused. Sales people were told to fill pipelines with anything they could. 48% of the “qualified” pipeline were opportunities in the 95 non-core customer categories.

It’s no wonder they struggle to make their numbers. They were wasting lots of time and resources on opportunities that were outside their ICP. They were opportunities they were unlikely to win, and would, if they won them, have difficulty in servicing and supporting them. Imagine how things would have changed if they focused their time and effort on finding customers in the top 5 categories.

We have finite time to produce results. Our customers have no time or patience to talk to those who can’t help them. We are more effective in filling our pipelines by narrowing our focus and concentrating on the customers we serve best.

Do you know who those are? Are you spending your time with them and not wasting your time on others?

Author David Brock is CEO of Partners in Excellence. Read more blogs from Brock here.