Back in the late 90s, an American software designer, Alan Cooper, developed a concept that changed and redefined how today's marketers and sales teams target and interact with their buyers. "To create a product that must satisfy a diverse audience, logic might tell you to make it as broad in its functionality as possible to accommodate the most people. This logic, however, is flawed. The best way to accommodate a variety of users is to design for specific individuals with specific needs." This Cooper's statement led to the invention of a concept known as "Buyer Persona" which proves to be the most crucial step in targeting and engaging with the right prospects. Researching and finding out who your current as well as ideal buyers are and whom your product value proposition resonates with will help you define the right parameters for attracting viable leads and retaining your audience.
What is a Buyer Persona?
A buyer persona is a representation of customers that are ideal prospects for your product. They are created based on your customer and consumer research. Each character covers a specific segment of your audience and is given a personality/ traits based on their demographics, shopping habits, professional status, etc. After you establish who your Buyer Personas are (it will very likely be more than one), this data will give you clarity on whom you're selling to, who your target audience is, and what marketing or sale practices should be implemented in order to attract them, convert them, or retain their business.
What are the benefits of Creating Buyer Personas?
Creating Buyer Personas benefits numerous teams across your organization. It helps your Customer Service Teams to better understand and support your customers, which in turn enhances the quality of the service they provide.
It lets sales teams not only improve their sales pitch but also helps them better understand your customer's needs and which aspects of your service or product will speak to them the most.
It allows your marketing team to create a more personalized brand messaging, helps them more easily identify high-value leads, and lets them design more detailed customer journey maps suited to each persona.
Create Your Buyer Persona
Researching and discovering your buyer persona will include many teams across your organization as well as utilizing some of the social listening tools. A few resources essential in creating your Buyer Persona profiles include:
- Your marketing team can provide you with hard data and statistics.
- Sales reps possess a wealth of information collected from their everyday interactions with prospects and buyers.
- Your customer service team has great insights into your customer's pain points.
- Using tools such as social listening, market research, online reviews, and getting involved in the communities that your current or ideal customers are a part of can prove to be greatly beneficial in defining who your audience is.
- Your partners are a massive asset to you. Many of them have already had experience identifying your buyer persona or they are currently working with those you would want to sell to.
- Your customers. There is no better source of information than the source itself. Talking to your current and former customers can answer many questions that are crucial in finding out who they are, what prompted them to buy or prevented them from it as well as what content they enjoy, what problems they're trying to solve, etc. You can gather this data using online forms, questionnaires, or best- by approaching your customer directly.
Key elements in designing your Buyer Persona:
A few areas you can start to start designing your buyer persona are as follows:
- demographics such as age, gender, location, income, family status, education, etc.
- pain points and challenges- fears, obstacles, struggles
- information sources- preferred media, influencers they follow, social networks and websites they visit, etc.
- purchasing behaviors- frequency, their decision-making process
- psychographics- goals, wants, values and beliefs
- professional status- industry, job title
Your Buyer Persona may change based on current events, economic climate, technology, and many other factors. What makes up your Buyer Persona catalog will depend upon whether you're a B2B or B2C organization. It is important to revisit your Buyer Personas regularly to ensure you are always targeting the right audience.
Adding a partner, like MarketStar, is a great way to continue to hold, develop, and understand your buyers. We have helped companies better understand their customers. We have found and targeted them for our clients. We also give insights to your company from our latest technology and practices.