How to define your Buyer Persona

24 July 2018

One of the first steps in any marketing strategy, be it online or off is to clearly define of your target audience.   

This Audience is specific to your company, the people that buy your products, relate to and use your services.  And while you may have a general idea of who they are and what they do, once you really dig deep and define them in detail, it opens a world of insights and ideas.

It helps to set internal priorities and gets your marketing and sales teams on the same page.

Personas are created through research, surveys, and interviews of your target audience. This includes a mix of both customers as well as potential customers as well as those outside of your contact database who might align with your target audience.

Here are some practical methods for gathering the information you need to a  personas:

Interview customers

By interviewing both customers and potential customers -- either in person or over the phone, you will discover what they like about your product or service. Ask questions about their job role and title, what a typical day-in-the-life looks like (both at work and outside of work). What tools do they use, what challenges to they have.  Where are they from, how they search for information on the internet, and so on. Here's a list of 20 questions to ask during a persona interview to help guide you.

Look for behavioral trends

Look through your contact list to uncover trends about how certain leads or customers find you and your products.

Are more than one of your customers that are facing the same issue, are they complaining about the same problem online.  If so, be sure to note it down

Buyer persona

Optimize forms for your persona

If you have a form on your website, or on one of your landing pages, be sure to include form fields that capture important  information that you can use when defining your persona. For example, if all of your personas vary based on company size, ask within a form field for information about company size.

Talk to your sales team

Really know one know your customers better than your sales team, they speak with them constantly and are clear on the challenges and questions that your target audience has.  What generalizations can they make about the different types of customers you serve on a day to day basis?

 Bonus Tip: Start with one, core persona and build up from there.

Once you start with one, it'll get the ball rolling and other personas will automatically come to mind.

Now, time for you to create a persona

Would you like an quick and easy way to create a few personas for your business?  Here is a blank template to help and guide you along the way. Click the button below to download your own, customizable templates. (No information required to get access to this template, and it's free.)

Download Persona Template here

Whether you're just getting started or you have already begun your research,  these templates will help you focus, get you asking some key quesitons and streamline your persona development.

Here is a Persona Example

Here's an example of a persona we created using the persona template you can download above. We'll call her Sample Sally.

Section 1: The "Who?"

In the first section, you'll enter your persona's background, demographics, and identifiers (like demeanor and communication preferences).

A Personas background information includes their job, career history, and family

A personas demographics include gender, age, income, and location

A personas identifiers include demeanor and communication preferences

Second 2: The "What?"

Next, you'll fill in the goals and challenges of your persona, followed by what your business can do to help them achieve their goals and overcome their challenges.

Include your personas primary and secondary goals

Include your personas primary and secondary challenges

What can you do to help your persona achieve goals and overcome challenges

Section 3: The "Why?"

This is a great spot for you to input real quotes from the people you've interviews and surveys that you conducted as part of your research. You can add common objections or doubt a persona might have,  reasons your target audience have said they wouldn't be interested in your offering.

Include real quotes of personas goals and challenges

Why wouldnt real prospects buy your solution

Section 4: The "How?"

And lastly, you can fill in the marketing related messaging you want to use for to target this particular buyer. How should you describe your offering to this persona? What would speak their language and resonate with them?

 How should you describe your solution to your persona

Sell your persona on your solution

Use this example as a guide to customize your own  personas, and use them to organize your audience segments and strengthen your marketing.

If you have any questions or would like an strategy session to assist you in defining your Digital Content Strategy in which building personas is a large part, be sure to give us a shout here at Nimbler.

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