Smart marketing…is built around customer personas.
Who is buying from you – and exactly how much do you know about them?
What are your customers’ biggest challenges?
What problems keep them up at night?
If you’re like most small business owners, you can provide an off-the-cuff description of your buyers – but can you answer these three questions?
Smart marketers can. They deeply understand their customers’ biggest needs, challenges and desires. They recognize that not all customers are the same and create “personas” to analyze each segment individually.
What is a customer persona – and how do you create it?
As the name implies, a customer persona (also referred to as a “buyer persona” or “marketing persona”) is a general, semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer. Think of it like a composite sketch of a distinct type of buyer. But while the word “fictional” is used in the definition, a persona isn’t plucked from the air. It’s based on research and data about customers’ demographics, attitudes, challenges, concerns, behavior patterns, motivations and buying criteria that influence their purchasing decisions.
Here’s a quick overview of how to create a customer persona:
Gather and assemble data – and your team.
You will likely have to conduct market research (i.e., surveys and interviews) before creating a buyer persona, but you may already have useful data in your website analytics and CRM software. Bring together team members from marketing, customer service, sales/business development and any other customer-facing department to participate in the project.
Select and define a distinct group of buyers.
Start by selecting the biggest, easily definable group of customers you have, and then consider them collectively. Give the group a name, and define relevant characteristics that make them unique, such as:
- Demographics (e.g., age, gender, salary, location, education, family)
- Employment (e.g., job title, duties, industry, company size)
- Goals, concerns and challenges (While it’s important to understand how you help solve their problems/achieve their goals, it’s also essential to think beyond your products/services and consider everything this type of individual deals with.)
- Values and motivators (e.g., what guides their decision-making and behaviors; what objections do they have to your products/services)
Develop a marketing message and elevator pitch.
Once you know what’s important to this audience, as well as how you can help them meet their goals and overcome key challenges, use that knowledge to describe your products/services in terms relevant to this type of customer. Translate that description into an “elevator pitch,” which is a succinct, persuasive message that sparks interest in what your business does.
Repeat this entire process for each segment (distinct group of customers) you serve.
How do you leverage customer personas in marketing?
Creating detailed personas provides tremendous structure and insight for your company. Understanding each audience allows you to:
- choose the best ways to connect with customers and prospects (e.g., social media, phone, email, in person);
- hone marketing messages to make a greater impact;
- create more targeted, relevant content for each type of buyer and each stage of the buying process;
- stand out more effectively from the competition;
- ultimately turn more prospects into buyers.
Knowing your customers’ challenges is fundamental to smart marketing.
Marketing without a clear understanding of what makes each audience “tick” is about as accurate as throwing darts blindfolded.
Don’t guess. Get expert help!
Make your marketing more targeted. And effective! Give BARQAR’s experts a call today.