Buyer personas are “semi-fictional representations of your ideal customer based on real data along with some select educated speculation about customer demographics, behavior patterns, motivations, and goals.” Basically, a buyer persona is a sketch of your average consumer based on research you have done. Research can be collected through interviews, forms that have been filled out by customers on your website, surveys, and any other number of ways you can find information about your clientele.
Why Do I Need a Buyer Persona?
As we all know, it’s easy to get caught up in the big picture. You just read an article how only Youtube is the only noteworthy social media network, or your boss is telling you all about the next big trend in your field. However, if you don’t know specifically who you’re marketing to, there is no way to know how you should be marketing in order to increase revenue. Maybe YouTube is the future in social media for some demographics, but what if the group you’re trying to sell to sticks to the concise layout of Twitter? Maybe sky-high stilettos are the new It shoe, but what if your customers are interested in comfort over fashion? It’s easy to fall into the trap of creating content that you would like to see, but you are not your customers. In order to produce the content your clientele is interested in, you must first determine who that clientele is.
Also, by having a buyer persona, you can focus your money and time where it will be most effective. With both of those being things most of us are looking to find more of, creating a buyer persona can be the greatest investment you can make.
What Does A Buyer Persona Look Like?
After you gather data through interviews, forms, surveys and digital research tools, it’s time to create your persona. Your buyer persona should have a nickname and a life story, based off your research, and supplemented with additional educated speculation to give a full picture. For example, Curtain Solutions sells fashionable curtains online for a low price. Based on their research, they have come up with the buyer persona Busy Beth. Beth is a secretary at a doctor’s office in her mid-30s, and she has one toddler. Beth wants her house to look up-to-date without the fuss- she wants curtains that are pretty but also easy to install, and won’t get worn or dirty too fast. She is willing to spend up to $300 on window treatments right now. She looks for inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram, and shares her own pictures and ideas with her friends on Facebook and Instagram.
I Have a Buyer Persona. Now What?
Curtain Solutions’ marketing team now has a clear idea of who they should be focusing their time and energy towards. It gives them an idea of what problems their consumers have (lack of durable, stylish curtains) and how their company can fill that need. It also gives them an idea of the price range they should be pricing at, and what social media channels they should be utilizing.
Yes, a buyer’s persona may not cover all your customers. Curtain Solutions may also have middle-aged men and hip teenagers as their customers. However, since the majority of their customers look something like Busy Beth, having her as a persona helps them focus on their target group. Remember, it pays to spend more time on one demographic that will likely become customers than it does spending less time on many demographics who may or may not end up purchasing your product or service.
So there you have it. With buyer personas, you can put your marketing money where your clients will see you, and give them the products and services they are interested in seeing. This is the important first step to upping your marketing game, and increasing your much-deserved revenue.
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Chaya Lencz is our marketing associate at AbilitySEO. In addition, she is currently a student at University of Baltimore's Merrick School of Business.