Perhaps you’ve thought about creating some buyer personas for your business and wondered if it’s actually worth the time. Are buyer personas important? Are they actually worth all of the thought and work they take to create?
What is a buyer persona?
A buyer persona is a template that represents the type of customer who is interested in your products or services. It’s a profile that you create by investing research and thought into your target customer.
Most businesses have more than one buyer persona. In fact, it’s helpful to have one for each type of customer or client that you serve. Your buyer persona will hone in on the needs, wants, lifestyle, challenges, and other characteristics of your target buyer.
Why are buyer personas important?
Buyer personas are very important. They remind you of the motivations and habits of your customers. They also give you the opportunity to segment your customers into different groups. Perhaps most importantly, they allow you to decide what type of marketing to use in order to best connect with your audience.
Common marketing mistakes
It’s essential to understand your ideal buyer before making important marketing decisions. For example, if you’re a retirement advisor marketing mostly to 50- and 60-year-olds, Instagram is probably not the most effective choice. If you write practical advice for busy moms, you may want to steer clear of 4000-word blog posts. Identifying you target audience will give you extremely helpful insight into how to best use your marketing dollars.
Another mistake that many businesses make is talking more about themselves than about their customer’s needs. We get it—it’s tempting to fill your homepage with the story about how your great-grandfather’s cousin twice removed started the business one summer with his dog over 50 years ago. Unfortunately, that’s not what your customers want to hear. Instead, they want to know exactly how you can help them with their needs. To do this, you need to understand your customer.
(When you work with us, we’ll ask you specifically-tailored questions to help you figure out exactly what your customers need to hear from you!)
To sum it up, you can’t market well until you understand your customer.
How do you create a buyer persona?
But how do you know who your target buyer is? There’s not just one way to figure this out. First, simply think about your current customers. What tends to describe them? What are their goals? How old are they? What challenges do they face? Are they male or female? What is their average income? See this post for more questions to ask about your ideal buyers.
Send out a short survey to your main contacts, asking them some basic questions about themselves. You can include a small incentive in order to encourage them to fill out the survey.
Talk to your customers! If you have the advantage of regular communication with your customers, make it a priority to get to know them—at least a little bit! Be friendly.
Talk to your customer-facing employees or coworkers. The people who spend day in and day out talking to customers will probably have a pretty good idea of what the customers’ lives are like.
Use the internet. Check your analytics. See what pages your customers are viewing the most. Find out who’s looking at your content. You can even use your social media sites to run polls to get to know more about your customers.
How many buyer personas should you have?
There’s no perfect amount of buyer personas. It really depends on your business and your customers. In general, having 3-8 personas usually works well.
Want to know more about customer personas?
We wrote more about how to define and create your buyer persona in this post. We also included a buyer persona example.
In addition, here’s a simple version of a buyer persona to get you thinking about your target audience.
Need help reaching your customers?
We know that it’s frustrating and overwhelming when your marketing efforts don’t seem to bring results. At Lifedge, we specialize in high-quality digital marketing that works.