Creating a customer persona is a powerful tool for understanding your consumer base. It allows small businesses to create more effective marketing campaigns for their ideal customers. It allows them to speak directly with potential clients based on their goals and needs.
By identifying your target audience and creating marketing personas, you can develop better products or services that keep these customers coming back time after time.
Why it’s Important to Have a Customer Persona
If you are a lawyer, you may know that your customer base is made of local clients in need of legal services. However, that is not the full picture. For example, someone suffering from personal injuries may have different needs than a business that requires arbitration with a former employee.
A customer persona is based on your customers’ demographics, behaviors, and ways of thinking.
Once you paint a picture of these characteristics for a customer persona, you can create products, services, and targeted marketing campaigns that speak directly to them.
You can gather information about your customers through surveys, interviews, and data analytics. Content marketers focus on these elements to help develop customer personas:
- Age and gender
- Type of career and income level
- Behaviors such as what they care about when looking for products
- Ways of thinking, like how they see themselves
- Goals or why they want your product and service
- Any obstacles they want to overcome and how you can help them
- Common objections to buying your product
Brand Persona and Customer Personas: What’s the Difference?
Your customer personas help you better understand your customers’ needs, pain points, and common objections. With these customer personas in mind, you are in a good position to start creating a brand persona. So what is a brand persona?
A brand persona may sound similar to brand identity and brand personality that represents the visual and communication aspects of the business, respectively. But learning how to develop a brand persona differs from developing a customer persona. First, it is based on an identity created by the personas with the greatest buying power. Second, it provides more insight into how customers perceive your business and what motivates them to interact with your business.
The difference between brand and buyer persona lies in their purposes for market segmentation. A customer persona is the characteristics of an ideal customer for a product or service. A brand persona is distilled from many customer personas into one identity for the brand. It can also help you create meaningful interactions with them as a company.
Creating a customer persona and brand persona is crucial to the success of your business’ products and services. Since you know better about your customers’ characteristics, you can create a lasting emotional connection with your audience.
How to Develop a Customer Persona
Small businesses can benefit from a buyer persona explainer just as much as large corporations. You can begin creating a real customer persona by using these strategies.
1. Identify your target customer
You can gather a list of your customers to create a customer persona. Write what you know about customers, like their ages, careers, or locations. Then, you can have your sales, marketing, and customer service teams tell you more about your customer base. They interact with customers daily, which provides some insight into their behaviors and objections.
Consider your competitors’ target audiences by looking over their website and products, and services. You may find that your competitors have similar customers in terms of age groups, professions, and behaviors, allowing you to create a target persona.
2. Ask your customers directly
Asking your customers questions can help you better understand their needs and goals. In addition, you can use online surveys, phone calls, and in-person interviews to connect with your audience. These can help you learn more about your customers based on their thoughts and viewpoints.
Online surveys can contain questions about what motivates them to buy and if they have obstacles to overcome before purchasing. In addition, you can gain insight into your customers’ descriptions of your product or service by talking to them by phone or in person. You can also ask them to elaborate on their answers, gathering details not included in online surveys.
3. Review your customer data
Customer data can also be used to develop a customer persona. Google Analytics has a wealth of information. For example, it tells you your visitors’ locations and the keywords used to search for you. It can also tell you the most visited web pages.
Social media provides a wealth of analytic information that can identify your existing customers. In addition, it may be used to uncover potential customers to help you learn more about them and how you can integrate them.
4. Keep the persona in mind when deciding marketing strategy
You need to keep your customer persona in mind when planning your marketing strategy for the best results. An effective marketing campaign starts with good messaging, from shopping cart ads to billboards.
How do billboards work to attract your target customers? They operate in the same capacity as a grocery store or shopping cart ads but on a larger scale, potentially reaching more of your client base. Therefore, it’s essential to use the appropriate brand advertising for your product or service to reach the desired demographic.
Update Your Customer Persona Over Time
Customer personas are a great tool to gain real insight into improving your customer experiences, products, and services. To create an effective customer persona, you will need to conduct surveys, interviews and listen to available information from your team members.
Creating marketing personas requires creating characters that represent real customers. Your personas should reflect their needs, goals, and objections. Your customer’s needs and goals will evolve, so ensure your customer personas are also changing in response.