Most businesses recognise the value of creating buyer personas, as they allow companies to understand their customers better and tailor their marketing campaigns more effectively. But how do you create a buyer persona that reflects your existing or target consumer base? And how do you make it easy for your marketing team to understand and use?
You need to understand your buyers and make sure everyone in your sales and marketing teams do too.
How to create your buyer personas
Ask the right questions
Posing a series of hypothetical questions will help you understand what motivates your customers and prompts them to buy. These will differ depending on your business sector and the type of conversion you’re looking for. You may wish to find out about your customers’:
- Current employment
- Personal background
- Main challenges and goals
- Hobbies and interests
- Favourite websites and social media preferences
- Buying habits
If possible, find out why your consumers behave the way they do; for example, why do they prefer Twitter over LinkedIn or vice versa? Why Do You Use Social Media? by Jeff Bullas was written nearly 2 years ago, but the questions are still very relevant when defining a buyer persona.
How to gather this information
The more research you undertake, the better you will understand your consumers. You may wish to monitor:
- Search engine analytics
- Customer surveys
- Insights from your sales and customer service teams
- Demographic information from your list of contacts
- Social media activity
Make sure you focus on your long-term customers as well as your newest buyers. It will benefit your business if you can understand what encourages repeat business and why some buyers simply make one-off purchases. If you can, find out why former customers are now buying from your competitors.
Establish patterns and trends
Once you’ve done your research, it’s time to look for trends. It is likely that more than one or more groups will start to emerge. This information will form the basis of your buyer personas. How old is your buyer? What does he or she do apart from work? Which social media sites does she or he use?
Your buyer personas need to be more than bullet points; they need to explain what motivates your buyers to behave the way they do. Produce a narrative that explains why they are online at the times they are, how they obtain product information and so on. Give your buyer personas distinct and memorable names.
Once you have crafted your buyer personas, distribute them to all the members of your workforce so that they can see what makes your customers tick. It may help to use a PowerPoint presentation or to provide handouts so that the information sticks in their minds and it might even be worth writing an elevator pitch for each persona to help your team understand how to reach out to each type of buyer.
The better you understand your customers, the more likely you are to build meaningful relationships with them. This will help to attract new customers as well as keeping your existing customers loyal.
Do buyer personas help you target your marketing messages more effectively? How often do you revisit them to make sure their still relevant?
If you need help with your online marketing, get in touch.
However… Too much data can be just as much of a problem as too little if your Data Management processes aren’t up to scratch. If you’re unsure what you should be measuring and how each metric relates to your goals then the constant stream of data is next to useless.