A buyer persona describes the person who represents your target audience. Although fictional, this persona is based on extensive research into your desired or existing audience. It might also be called a customer persona or audience persona or a marketing persona.
It is impossible to get to know each prospect or customer individually. However, you can create a customer profile to represent your customer base. You might have to create multiple buyer personas, as different customers might buy your products for different reasons.
This buyer persona will be given a name, demographic details and interests. It will help you understand their buying habits, pain points, and goals. If you wish, you can give them a picture or illustration.
You want to talk about the model customer like a real person. This will enable you to create marketing messages that are specific to them.
Your buyer persona (or personas), is essential to ensure consistency in everything, from product development and brand voice to social media channels.
Why use a buyer persona?
A persona lets you focus on customer priorities and not your own. When you decide on your overall marketing strategy or social marketing strategy, think about your buyer personas.
Is your new campaign meeting the needs and goals at least one buyer persona? If this is not the case, you have every reason to reconsider your plan.
You can now create organic posts and ads that directly target the buyer personas you have created. Particularly social advertising offers extremely detailed social targeting options that will get your ad to the right people.
Your social strategy should be based on helping personas achieve their goals. This will help you build a relationship with the customers they represent. It's about building brand loyalty and trust that will ultimately streamline your sales process.
How to build a buyer persona
Your buyer persona should not be someone you just want to be friends with. It should be based on real data and strategic goals. This is how to create a fictional customer that matches your real-world brand.
1. Conduct thorough research about your audience
Now is the time to get into the details. What are your current customers? Who are your social media customers? Which competitors are you targeting? These concepts can be explored in greater detail in our comprehensive guide to audience research. In the meantime, here are some suggestions.
To narrow down on specific details, compile audience data from your social media analytics (especially Facebook Ad Audience Insights), customer database and Google Analytics.
- Patterns and spending power
- Life stage
- For B2B: The size and role of the purchasing decision-makers
It is also important to understand the social media channels that your audience uses. You can use tools such as Keyhole.co, Hootsuite Analytics, and Brandwatch to find out where your audience spends their time online.
2. Identify the customer's pain points and goals
Depending on what products or services you offer, your audience might have personal or professional goals. What is your customer's motivation? What is their ultimate goal? What are their problems and how can they be solved? What is holding them back? What are their obstacles to achieving their goals?
These questions can be answered by your sales team or customer service department. However, you also have the option to engage in social media and sentiment analysis.
You can monitor what people say about your brand and products online by setting up search streams. It is possible to find out why people love your products and which aspects of customer service are not working.
3. Learn how you can help
Once you have an understanding of your customers' needs and goals, you can start to look at how you can help them. This means looking beyond the features to see the real benefits of your product.
A feature describes what your product does or is. Benefits are the ways your product or service makes someone's life easier, or better.
What are your customers' main buying barriers? Where is your audience in their buying journeys? Then ask yourself, "How can I help?" Then, write down the answer in one sentence.
4. Create your buyer personas
Start gathering all your research and looking for common traits. You'll be able to create your customer personas by combining these characteristics.
Your buyer persona should have a name, job title, and other distinguishing characteristics. Your persona should feel like a real person.
Let's say, for example, you identify your core customer group as a 40-year old, professional successful woman who lives in a city and has a passion about great restaurants. "High-Achiever Haley" might be your buyer persona.
- She is 44 years of age.
- She attends a spin class two times per week.
- She lives in Vienna, and she is the founder of her PR company.
- She and her partner travel on at least one international vacations per year. They prefer to stay in boutique hotels.
This isn't a simple list of attributes. This is a specific, detailed description of one potential client. This allows you to see your potential buyer as a person and not just as a set of data points. Although these things might not be true for every buyer in your audience they can help you to represent an archetype.
You should aim for the same amount of information that you would see on a dating site. However, don't forget about your pain points.
When creating customer personas for your customers, make sure you describe who each persona currently is and what they would like to become. This will allow you to begin to think about how your products or services can help them achieve their goals.
Buyer persona examples
You can share your buyer personas with your team in many different ways. You might have a few bullet points or a long story with multiple paragraphs. You might also include a stock image or illustration. These reference documents can be formatted in any way you like.
Here's an example by James Donovan, UX designer. He created a buyer persona of Karla Kruger (a fictional customer), including information about her job, age and demographic, as well as her goals and pain points. We have detailed information about her beauty routine and product preferences and know her age (41).
This example includes her media consumption as well as her favorite brands. It's quite interesting. Detail is key to bringing out the customer's personality, so be specific!
We can also see where "Karla", on the various scales of brand loyalty and social influence as well as price sensitivity. These details can be very important for your customer. You should find them out during your research phase.
A Brand-Loyal Suburban Home Cook
Survey Monkey's example of a buyer persona gives life to a fictional data analyst. We learn about her education, where she lives, as well as her passions and interests. She likes to travel and cook, is loyal, and values her relationships.
How would this persona impact your marketing strategy and product offerings if they were your company's typical client? A clearly defined buyer persona is a key component of every decision you make.
A Dog-Loving Young Professional
The buyer persona was created by Single Grain digital marketing agency. It includes information about Tommy Technology's salary, love life, and career challenges. A character like this can be given a voice by including some quotes, either repurposed from customers or invented.
When you decide on your marketing strategy and social media content, think about your buyer personas first. If you do right by these personas, you will build a relationship with them and increase sales and brand loyalty. And never forget to collect data: if you use a buyer persona, you must attribute your content to your buyer persona. A good way to test of content works with your buyer personas is to use social media campaigns that are tailored to your personas. The performance give you insight how well your content works with buyer personas.
Get in touch with us and learn how to create your buyer personas and gather analytical data from using your buyer persona.
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