Your buyer persona is a character profile based on research about your ideal customers. The buyer persona should be as detailed as possible and include information on demographics, behavior patterns, motivations, and goals. Buyer personas help marketers build better marketing plans, and understand the wants and needs of their customers.
In our last article, we talked about the main benefits of using customer journey maps to view the entire customer experience from the customer’s point of view. An important step before doing that is fully understanding your customer. I don’t mean just knowing that they are in a certain industry and have a specific job role. I mean deeply understanding them. This is where the buyer persona comes in. Creating a persona will make you describe your customers with a similar level of detail that you could probably describe your very good friends. When you think about your close friends, they probably trust you with this information. They probably also value your opinion because you know them well and have worked to establish a trusting relationship. Building the best customer relationships today is not dissimilar to the process of building a friendship.
When you meet a person for the first time, you may learn the what they do and where they work, but would you call them a friend? Do they trust you right away and ask for advice or guidance? No, of course not. Inbound marketing works in the same way. You have to build trust over time, through more interactions with a lead. In order to gain more interactions, you’ll have to understand them on a deeper level. What interests them? What goals do they have in life? What do they like to do in their free time? These are questions you may ask a potential friend to come up with ideas for activities you could do together. These questions will also help you develop the right content, events, and products to get a lead to interact with your company or brand more. Your buyer persona will help you determine their personality and you can build out your marketing campaigns from there.
Where should your buyer persona live? With marketing, sales, communications, product development? Everywhere. A buyer persona guides your marketing campaigns but is also extremely useful for your sales and product development teams to know. By understanding your customers on this level, product development can design new products and tools that make sense for their lives. When speaking to potential customers, your sales team is armed with talking points for how your products can solve their greatest challenges, from a holistic point of view. Every part of your company can benefit from having a deeper understanding of your buyers. Store the persona in the same place you keep your branding documents to complete the picture of your company’s messaging.
How should you get started with your buyer persona? Sitting down and thinking of all the questions you could possibly ask, and then wondering how to gather all those answers can seem like a tedious task. There are a lot of tools out there that help you build out your buyer persona. We’ve even created one that lists out all the most important questions. Filling everything in takes a matter of minutes in our tool which you can access here: https://www.vbout.com/Buyer-Persona/
There are a lot of free resources, templates, and tools out there, so the real struggle with creating your persona is most likely getting the answers to the questions. You may not know where to find the information. This can be done mainly through research, both primary and secondary.
Here are 6 different ways to consider:
Do you want to start creating your own buyer persona?