Every organization, regardless of its business model, can benefit from a buyer persona.
“What is a buyer persona?” you ask, “And why is it important?”
If you are going to spend time and money on your digital marketing – which you already are – you better make sure that your efforts are on target. And in order to be on target, you need to know who you are marketing to. Buyer personas help you to do this.
What is a Buyer Persona?
A buyer persona is a representation of your ideal customer based on real data and some select educated guesses about customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations, and goals; it’s a semi-fictional description of your ideal customer.
You can have more than one persona, just as you have more than one type of person who buys your product or service. But regardless of how many unique personas you have, each one consists of the following:
1. Common behavior patterns
2. Shared pain points (be it professional or personal)
3. Universal goals, wishes, dreams
4. General demographic and biographic information
For example, Beverly Settle is the persona for an over-the-counter calcium supplement – a woman, 65+ years of age, ‘settling’ into older age and slowing down, pre- or osteoporosis, required by her doctor to take calcium, and making/taking calcium a part of her daily routine is a challenge.
Why Do You Need a Buyer Persona?
A buyer persona allows you to:
1. Identify who you want to reach
2. Identify where your best customers spend time online – so you can be there too
3. Keep everybody in your organization focused on the same audience
4. Guide product and service development – if you know what your personas are trying to achieve you can create things to help them reach their goals and overcome their challenges
5. Create the right marketing content – the right content most effectively attracts your ideal visitors, converts them into qualified leads, and closes them into customers
A buyer persona is who you are trying to reach with your marketing. It enables you to understand your customers as they consider, evaluate, buy and interact with your product or service (it impacts every stage of the customer journey).
Without personas, you may only be guessing what marketing content your audience wants, which means you are more likely to revert to creating content around what you know best (your products and company) instead of around the information your audience is actively seeking.
Our next blog post on this topic covers how to create a Buyer Persona. In the mean time, visit digetry's Resource Center for more small business digital marketing best practices and tips.