• The Power of Buyer Personas

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With buyer personas, you can read your customer’s mind.

Or, rather, your customer will THINK you can read their mind.

Either way, you win.

Now, in order to garner these most intimate of insights into customer behavior, purchasing habits, and the milestones of the complex consumer journey, there are some careful steps you must take.

But once you’ve reached the promised land and your hard work has paid off, your company could see conversions (and profits?) rise 73% higher than before.

Still interested? Let’s see how it’s done.     

Defining Buyer Personas

First off, what is a buyer persona?

According to the Buyer Persona Institute, buyer personas are segmented customer profiles that are “built from the real words of real buyers… telling you what prospective customers are thinking and doing as they weigh their options to address a problem that your company solves.”

Translation: Buyer Personas are descriptions of the people who buy from your company. They include demographic descriptors of a person, the reason they considered a useful product or service, and the steps they took in the buying process to acquire it.

You can have 1, 3, or even 10 buyer personas to create a picture and representation of the types of people who need your business. You may have Susan, a stay-at-home-mom in her 30s who struggles to find time to get everything done (so your efficiency-boosting product is a life saver!), or James, an entrepreneur in his 50s who likes to do things himself (so he would love your step-by-step guides and self-serve style service).

In essence, buyer personas are the mental roadmap consumers use to solve an issue they have (by buying something) that you can use to tailor your business and your messaging to your distinct customers’ needs.

How Do I Create Buyer Personas?

Wondering how to create your own buyer personas for your business? Like an electronic GPS, you can lay out the map your customers follow – complete with pit stops to spend money with you. You just have to know how.

Here are some simple steps you can take to really get down to the heart of it with them, speak honestly, and get the answers you need to make your business, and their experiences, better:

  • Ask Them Directly: Experts suggest conducting 8 to 10 interviews (phone or email) with your customer base on any given product. Ask them what made them make the decision they did, if it solved their challenge, and how you can improve to have the best approach for others as well.
  • Avoid MSU: No, we’re not saying don’t visit Michigan State (Go Spartans!). It means “Don’t Make Stuff Up.” Run-of-the-mill marketers make up data on what they think their customers want, throw it at the wall, and see what sticks. You want to be more genuine with REAL interactions and statistics to make your Buyer Personas work. 
  • Integrate Them: You have the data. You have the conversations. Use them! Take advantage of customer summaries, follow them through the process, fill gaps where needed, and personalize their experiences with relevant and compelling content before they even ask for it. (HINT: Predictive intelligence tools like Google Analytics will go a long way in this effort)

Once you’ve gathered the data and talked with real customers to find out who’s using your busing and why, write it down. Describe your customer “types” including age brackets, problems they’re trying to solve, and what defines a solution to them. These vivid pictures help you create perfectly tailored messaging to draw in the types of people who need your services!

The Big Persona Payoff

Now, if this sounds like a lot of work for a busy professional like yourself, that’s because it is! Unfortunately, when getting to know your customers – mind, body, and spirit – there are no shortcuts. Like anything worth doing, it requires effort.

But that 73% up-tick in conversions we talked about is just the beginning of all your persona payouts. Other fruits that will almost always grow from your buyer persona tree include:  

Do the ends justify the means? You can be the judge. But one thing is clear: when it comes to buyer personas, The Godfather, Michael Corleone, was wrong. Even if it’s strictly business, it’s all personal too.

ThriveHive
ThriveHive
ThriveHive combines easy-to-use tools and expert guidance to help businesses stand out and get found online. Learn more about our guided marketing and advertising solutions here.

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