Personas are a semi-fictional representation of your business's ideal customer. In order for them to be effective and help generate results for your company, there are some crucial elements that need to be included so that your business has the right idea of who and where to target your marketing efforts.
With the growth of digital advertising and marketing campaigns, combined with an increase of companies conducting business online, it's getting more challenging and more important to define a customer base. In online business, you can’t physically see who walks in and out of your store and the kind of people purchasing your products. For businesses who are completely digital, or for those who desire to have a larger presence online, creating buyer personas is essential for defining an effective customer audience.
Now you're probably wondering, "What's a buyer persona?"
A persona is a fictional representation of a company’s ideal customer based on market research combined with existing data of current customers. Personas provide great insight for companies because they help narrow and simplify a company’s target audience. Personas encompass not only demographic information like age, location, and income, but also psychographic information such as interests and reasons for buying.
So, what kind of demographic information should you include in your personas?
- Define who your personas are.
This includes name, age, location, income, education, profession, ranking in the business, role in the household, and maybe a vague description of appearance. Most businesses choose three or four distinct personas to focus on.
- Discover what your personas like.
List some interests/hobbies of your personas outside of work that pertain to your company. What are their passions, likes, and dislikes?
- Learn their purchase history/habits.
What type of products and/or services do they tend to buy? Does he/she buy these things regularly, or were they just one-time purchases?
Now that you’ve defined who your personas are on the surface, it’s time to dig a bit deeper. What kind of psychographic information should you include in your personas?
- List your personas' needs that relate to your business.
What do your personas need help with, or what are they looking for? What does your business have to offer that the customer needs? This is crucial information to narrow down your target audience.
- List your persona's influencers and their motivations behind purchases.
Who are the significant people in the personas' lives and are they involved in the personas' purchasing habits and decisions? Are they the decision maker for their own purchases; or do they buy on the behalf of others such as family and/or friends? What are the personas' other reasons for buying?
- List the information and/or media sources that the personas utilize.
Do they get information by surfing the web, reading articles, attending events, watching television, etc.? What kind of social media outlets do they use and do these influence their purchase decisions? This information will give you a better understanding of where to market your product or service.
Remember that your personas will change as you discover who your core audience is and what motivates them. Don’t forget to reevaluate and redefine your buyer personas every now and then to make sure you’re targeting your most potential customers in the most effect ways.
Creating buyer personas for your business will create momentum for a customer-centric culture and create alignment between your audience and your business goals. If you would like help creating your personas, our digital agency can help you! Leave a comment or contact us here if you want to learn more.
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