Creating, Revising, and Perfecting the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) with Generative AI

Creating, Revising, and Perfecting the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) with Generative AI

While it’s true that digital marketing—and marketing in general—is undergoing an evolution right now, there are a number of truths that remain unchanged. Namely, understanding your customer is still pivotal to your success. 

With the advent of advanced generative AI tools like ChatGPT and Claude 2, amongst others, creating Ideal Customer Profiles (ICPs) has entered a new era of precision and efficiency. 

This case study dives deep into how ChatGPT was instrumental in crafting a comprehensive—and useful— ICP for Alex Martinez, a mid-sized manufacturing company owner who represents the ideal client for Thrive.

By leveraging the nuanced language processing and intelligent insights of ChatGPT, we were able to develop a detailed and adaptable persona that aligns perfectly with the specific needs and goals of our target market. 

The process not only streamlined the creation of Alex’s persona, but also offered a glimpse into the future of customer profiling in marketing – a future where AI plays a crucial role in understanding and catering to the ever-evolving demands of customers.



In order to ensure that ChatGPT was appropriately trained on our service offerings, we gave it all the information it needed to understand our programs, including multiple pieces of thought leadership on various topics, so it could start to understand our perspective on marketing and branding. 

Once it was sufficiently trained on our agency, work, programs, and audience, we asked ChatGPT the following question.  

What are the biggest challenges blue-collar marketers face right now?



ChatGPT: Marketers in blue-collar companies face several unique challenges in today’s evolving business landscape:

  1. Digital Transformation: With the increasing shift towards digital platforms, one of the significant challenges is adapting traditional blue-collar services to online spaces. This includes building a strong online presence and engaging with customers through digital channels.
  2. Skill Gap in Digital Marketing: Many blue-collar businesses may not have the in-house expertise needed for effective digital marketing, such as SEO, social media management, and content marketing.
  3. Budget Constraints: Often, blue-collar companies operate with limited marketing budgets, making it challenging to compete with larger firms or invest in new marketing technologies and strategies.
  4. Changing Customer Expectations: Customers now expect more personalized and immediate services. Meeting these expectations requires a more sophisticated approach to customer service and marketing.
  5. Brand Perception and Awareness: Overcoming stereotypes and changing perceptions about blue-collar industries is a significant challenge. These businesses often need to work harder to showcase their professionalism, expertise, and technological advancement.
  6. Competition from Larger Players: Small to medium-sized blue-collar businesses may struggle to compete against larger companies with more resources for marketing and customer outreach.
  7. Attracting a Younger Workforce: Many blue-collar industries face a workforce gap, with older generations retiring and fewer younger people entering these trades. Marketing not only to customers but also to potential employees is a unique challenge.
  8. Evolving Industry Standards and Regulations: Staying up-to-date with industry regulations and standards, and effectively communicating these changes to customers, can be a significant task.
  9. Measuring ROI: Determining the return on investment for marketing efforts can be difficult, especially when using traditional marketing methods that are harder to track than digital methods.
  10. Sustainability and Environmental Concerns: As public concern about sustainability grows, blue-collar companies in industries like manufacturing and construction must navigate marketing their services in an eco-friendly way.

Addressing these challenges requires a strategic approach, often involving digital transformation, skill development, and a focus on building a strong, relatable brand that resonates with both current customers and a younger demographic.



Since the problems that ChatGPT elucidated were accurate, and, frankly, really good, we next wanted to understand how it would advise us to go about generating new leads. Here was our next prompt.

Since we offer products aimed at the blue-collar sector, how can we generate new leads?



ChatGPT: Generating new leads, especially when targeting the blue-collar sector, requires a strategic and multi-faceted approach. Given that you offer very distinct programs, here are some effective strategies to consider:

    1. Content Marketing: Develop and share valuable content that addresses specific challenges faced by blue-collar businesses. This could include blog posts, how-to guides, case studies, and videos. Content marketing helps establish your expertise and draws in leads looking for solutions.
    2. Digital Advertising: Use targeted digital advertising on platforms like Google Ads, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Tailor your ads to reach decision-makers in the blue-collar sector, focusing on the specific problems your products solve.
    3. Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Optimize your website and content for search engines to increase your visibility when potential clients search for solutions you offer. Local SEO can be particularly effective if you are targeting businesses in specific geographical areas.
    4. Social Media Marketing: Engage with your target audience on social media platforms where they are active. For the blue-collar sector, platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, and even Instagram can be effective. Share your content, participate in relevant discussions, and showcase your products’ success stories.
    5. Email Marketing: Develop a targeted email marketing campaign. This could involve sending newsletters, product updates, and personalized offers to your existing database and new leads acquired through other channels.
    6. Networking and Partnerships: Attend industry events, trade shows, and networking meetings. Partnerships with complementary businesses or industry influencers can also help in reaching a broader audience.
    7. Referral Programs: Encourage your current customers to refer new clients by offering incentives. Word-of-mouth and referrals are particularly effective in tight-knit blue-collar industries.
    8. Webinars and Online Workshops: Host educational webinars and workshops that address common challenges faced by blue-collar businesses. These events can be an excellent way to gather leads by offering valuable insights while showcasing your expertise.
    9. Direct Outreach: Use direct outreach methods like cold calling or LinkedIn messaging, targeting business owners and decision-makers in the blue-collar sector. Personalize your messages to increase engagement.
    10. Customer Testimonials and Case Studies: Share stories of how your products have helped similar businesses. Testimonials and case studies can be powerful tools for building credibility and trust with potential clients.

    Remember, lead generation is most effective when you understand your target audience’s needs and pain points. Tailor your strategies to address these directly, and continuously evaluate and adjust your approach based on the results and feedback you receive.



    ChatGPT’s response to this prompt was far too basic. The tactics it suggested are well known and far from novel, and we certainly didn’t need technology to help us come up with these answers.

    However, the last suggestion it gave was a perfect segue into creating an ICP, so we ran with it.

    Create an ideal customer profile for buyers of our programs.



    ChatGPT: Creating an ideal customer profile (ICP) involves detailing the characteristics of the companies or individuals most likely to buy your products. Given that your products are aimed at the blue-collar sector, here’s an example of an ICP for your business:

    Ideal Customer Profile for Blue-Collar Sector Marketing Products

    Demographic Profile:

    • Industry: Construction, manufacturing, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, landscaping, or other skilled trades.
    • Business Size: Small to medium-sized businesses, typically ranging from 10 to 200 employees.
    • Location: Primarily based in urban or suburban areas, but could also include rural businesses with a significant local presence.
    • Revenue: Annual revenue ranging from $500,000 to $10 million.

    Behavioral Profile:

    • Decision-Makers: Business owners, CEOs, or marketing managers who are directly involved in decision-making processes.
    • Pain Points: Struggling with digital marketing, low brand visibility, stagnant market share, or lack of a coherent marketing strategy.
    • Technology Adoption: Moderate to low technology usage; businesses looking to enhance their digital presence but may lack in-house expertise.
    • Professional Goals: Looking to expand their customer base, increase brand awareness, and modernize their marketing efforts.

    Psychographic Profile:

    • Values and Beliefs: Strong emphasis on practicality, reliability, and quality workmanship. Value straightforward, no-nonsense communication and results-oriented solutions.
    • Personality Traits: Hands-on, pragmatic, and results-driven. Skeptical of ‘flashy’ marketing tactics and prefer clear, measurable marketing strategies.
    • Community Engagement: Often involved in local communities and industry groups. May rely on word-of-mouth and local reputation.

    Purchasing Behavior:

    • Buying Motivation: Driven by a need to remain competitive, attract new customers, and retain existing ones. Interested in straightforward solutions that promise tangible results.
    • Buying Concerns: Cost-sensitive and concerned about the return on investment. Prefer transparent pricing and clear evidence of effectiveness.
    • Preferred Communication: Direct communication channels like email, phone calls, or face-to-face meetings. Responsive to case studies, testimonials, and practical demonstrations of product efficacy.

    Preferred Channels for Discovery and Engagement:

    • Trade Shows and Industry Events: Regular attendees or participants in industry-specific events.
    • Industry Publications and Forums: Engage with content in trade publications, online forums, and social media groups relevant to their industry.
    • Referrals and Word of Mouth: Heavily influenced by recommendations from peers and industry connections.

    This ICP can be used to tailor your marketing strategies, develop targeted messaging, and choose the most effective channels for reaching potential buyers. Remember, the more detailed and accurate your ICP, the more effectively you can target and attract your ideal customers.



    ChatGPT’s response to this prompt is really good, but it’s also broader than what we were hoping to see. We needed to narrow to the individual buyer level.

    In order to get ChatGPT more aligned with how we think about ICPs internally, we asked it to read the following articles from Nielsen Norman Group, the world leaders in research-based user experience, who have published prolifically on personas.

    Then we prompted it with the following.

    Based on this new information I gave you, create a new persona for a buyer of our programs.



    ChatGPT: Certainly! Based on the information you’ve provided about your programs aimed at blue-collar businesses and the insights from the articles on personas, I’ll create a new persona. This persona will be a representation of a typical buyer for your programs, keeping in mind the need for personas to be adaptable and rooted in qualitative understanding.


    Persona: Tech-Savvy Business Innovator

    Name: Alex Martinez

    Age: 35

    Occupation: Owner of a mid-sized manufacturing company

    Location: Suburban area, Midwest, USA

    Education: Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration


    • Alex inherited the family business, a manufacturing company, five years ago.
    • He has a keen interest in modernizing the business and is open to adopting new technologies and marketing strategies.


    • To increase the company’s market share and visibility in a competitive industry.
    • To modernize the business’s marketing approach, moving away from traditional methods to more digital-focused strategies.
    • To attract a younger, tech-savvy workforce and customer base.


    • Limited experience with digital marketing and online branding.
    • Balancing the need for modernization with respecting the company’s traditional values and customer base.
    • Struggling to measure the ROI of marketing efforts and needing clearer analytics.


    • Actively seeks out new marketing strategies and tools to improve the business.
    • Prefers data-driven decisions but requires guidance to understand complex analytics.
    • Values personal relationships and trusts recommendations from industry peers.

    Tech Use:

    • Comfortable with basic technology but not deeply knowledgeable about digital marketing tools.
    • Uses social media for personal purposes and is interested in leveraging it for business.

    Media Consumption:

    • Regularly reads industry-specific publications and follows manufacturing and business news online.
    • Listens to podcasts about entrepreneurship and business innovation.

    Purchasing Behavior:

    • Looks for marketing services that promise tangible results with clear metrics.
    • Prefers products that are straightforward to implement and use.
    • Willing to invest in high-quality solutions that promise long-term benefits.

    Influence Channels:

    • Influenced by case studies and success stories from similar businesses.
    • Attends industry conferences and networking events.
    • Active in local business community groups and online forums.

    Quote: “I want to honor our company’s legacy while steering us into a more digital and innovative future.”

    Note on Adaptability: This persona should be revisited and updated as your understanding of your target market evolves, especially in response to changes in the business landscape or customer base. This approach ensures that the persona remains relevant and useful for your marketing strategy development.



    The final ChatGPT-generated ICP for Alex Martinez is really good. Not only is it accurate and practical, it’s useful—an ICP that we can deploy as we think about new program and product offers at Thrive, as well giving us a North Star to keep in mind as we develop new, personalized marketing content.

    Finally, while ChatGPT is incredible good at some things, it’s still pretty bad at others.

    To wrap this up, I’ll leave you with the images of Alex Martinez that ChatGPT generated in response to my prompt to visualize this ICP.




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