A buyer persona (customer persona) is a research-based profile that mimics the different types of your buyers.
When you hear marketers talk about buyer personas, they often refer to potential buyers. However, personas can also concern actual customers.
It’s normal for businesses to have multiple buyer personas; small businesses usually have fewer personas, and large organizations can create hundreds of different buyer personas.
How Does a Persona Look Like?
When you create buyer personas, each one is often one page long, and it should look like a social profile.
Each persona has a nickname, and each profile includes personal info; age, gender, children, marital status, location, profession, income level, and education.
Detailed professional information regarding your potential buyers is yet another core element in a buyer persona.
But the real reason that we care so much about buyer personas is that we want to unleash some other type of vital information such as;
- Goals & Challenges
- Key Drivers
- Values & Fears
Every business owner knows about their target group to some extent, but we create personas to take this to the next level.
Age, gender, location is just too simple. You have to know your customers much deeper.
Because the more you learn about your customers, the more you earn!
Knowing their intentions and what drives them can significantly alter your marketing, sales, and customer service efforts in your favor!
The Process of Creating Buyer Personas
Buyer persona creation is a three-step journey: research, creation, and optimization.
Research is where you gather data from internal or external sources.
If you have an established company, it’s rather simple because you can benefit from your current customer data.
In contrast, in new businesses, this step might be challenging.
Because there is going to be a learning curve and that your learning curve is to acquire first customers. That’s an expensive process.
When it comes to the actual creation of the persona, marketers often use a one-page document or a single slide per persona.
It’s a brilliant idea to divide the profile into a few sections and keep everything really simple.
Reliable sources provide a few good buyer persona templates; you can take one of these and adjust it for your business:
Also, here is an artificial intelligence-powered buyer persona tool called persona explorer if you want to take advantage of years of persona research conducted by Fortune 500 companies.
Always ask yourself this question when you are putting together your buyer personas: What’s my purpose?
Well, you will use your personas to address your potential buyers correctly.
As the last step, we have to point out the importance of optimization. Your customers are ever-evolving so updating your personas is another maintenance work to adapt to changes.
Maybe a persona you created a few years ago won’t exist anymore, or a new buyer persona will come into play.
That’s why you should keep an eye on important shifts in consumer behavior and act accordingly.
3 Core Benefits of Using Buyer Personas
Marketers approach the benefits of using buyer personas from various angles.
In my opinion, using buyers personas in digital marketing often results in;
- Creating content that’s much more accurate,
- Better targeting opportunities in digital advertising,
- Increasing overall business efficiency and saving costs.
More Accurate Content
I do side with the content professionals who think that content is the king!
But content marketing is an expensive process, and most businesses have limited sources.
That being said, anything that can guide us to build more accurate content is vital.
Also, when you create personas, you are unknowingly doing content research.
Isn’t that cool?
You dig in for things like what your persona asks when searching for solutions to their challenges.
You answer these questions, and you end up having a brilliant roadmap to content creation.
If you don’t benefit from personas when you create content, you often waste your content budget.
Content created based on buyer personas are usually much more specific.
For instance, if we are talking about creating blog posts based on personas, you will see the articles focusing on long-tail keywords.
On the contrary, randomly created content is often generic, and that would be shooting for stars!
Better Targeting in Digital Advertising
If you take the effort to build dozens or hundreds of buyer personas, you are also creating laser-targeted segments for your digital ads.
Targeting could be a nerve-racking process in digital advertising where the tiniest hints can ease the whole process.
Let’s say that one of your personas spends more than an hour on Instagram.
This could be such valuable info for your paid social expert. She can go ahead pursue IG as a platform in all her ad sets on Facebook Ads Manager.
Also, digital ads often include content such as creative and ad copy, right?
That means you can serve more accurate content to your ad segments which can significantly increase your overall CTR.
Increased Efficiency & Saving Costs
When you increase efficiency in traditional and modern businesses by streamlining your processes, cost-saving comes as a prize.
Building buyer personas definitely fits into this description since it’s an improvement related to various business functions such as product development, marketing, sales, and customer service.
Fine-tuning your product or services according to your personas is a great idea because once you launch your products accordingly, the return can only be profit.
In recent years, mobile screen sizes got larger and costly. But a group of males wanted a small device with the latest software without breaking the bank.
Apple came up with the 4.7 inches iPhone SE and later with 5.4 inches iPhone 12 Mini. That’s product development according to the pain points of a certain buyer persona.
It’s great because once you create a product for a persona, it’s easy and cost-effective to acquire new customers for it.
This is why persona-oriented companies often have sophisticated product lines.
As you can see, the buyer persona is easy to understand yet a highly critical topic for businesses.
So why not invest in building buyer personas to increase overall business efficiency and save costs!