If you’re someone who is new to creating buyer personas, it may seem intimidating at first. Content, SEO and the user experience can all depend on the fictional personas you create (no pressure). You know they matter, but how on earth do you get started? First, take a deep breath. Second, keep these three tips in mind when you start to develop your buyer personas.
What exactly IS a buyer persona?
HubSpot describes it perfectly as: “A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.”
Buyer personas help you tailor your marketing efforts towards your customers and prospects better by focusing on their specific behaviors, concerns and needs.
The best buyer personas are made from using the right tools, asking the right questions and doing in-depth research. Ultimately, your strategy should help one or more of these targeted personas.
Start with a template
There are several factors to consider when assembling your buyer personas — from demographic information like age and income to a customer’s goals and challenges. It can be overwhelming when you get started, which is why we recommend starting with a template.
Templates can be very helpful tools to help develop your personas. Templates break down all the important factors of personas, making it easier for you to narrow down on where to focus your research. It’s important to consider factors like:
- Background – Job, career path, family
- Demographics – Gender, age, income, location
- Identifiers – Personality, communication preferences
- And more
Templates are a great place to start to help you figure out what to focus on and what questions to ask yourself when building your ideal audience.
Talk to current customers and your Sales Team
Pool your existing resources and start by interviewing your current customers. Starting with your existing customers is great because they’re already engaged with your business and have purchased from you. They’ll be able to provide valuable insight on why they engaged with your business.
Take time to also talk to your Sales Team to learn more about the leads they have been engaging with and if they notice any trends with how your customers are consuming your content in different states of the Buyer’s Journey. Knowing where they are in the Buyer’s Journey can help you determine what type of engagement and experience they are looking for as well as what obstacles they may face.
Use these resources for persona development
There are several tools out there to help streamline the persona process. Here are a few of our favorite:
- HubSpot’s Make My Persona – This is an easy to use tool that allows you to plug in information and generate personas in just a few minutes.
- HubSpot’s Buyer Persona Template – HubSpot’s template is great for buyer personas beginners. The template walks you through the process of developing buyer personas– from detailed questions to ask during research, to how to present personas to your company!
- Know whom you DON’T want to target – If you’re still having trouble starting with your personas, the best place to start is thinking of your negative persona. Your negative personas are people who you don’t want to reach. This will save you time and money in the long run when developing your marketing efforts.
- Your buyer personas WILL change – Your audience is constantly evolving so be prepared for your personas to change with it.
At the end of the day, personas give you the insight to target your marketing for different segments of your audience. Instead of sending the same lead nurturing emails to everyone in your contact database, you will able to segment by your buyer persona and modify your messaging according to what you know about those different personas and make more your efforts much more effective.
Take your time with research because it will pay off in the long run. Once you get in a groove (pun intended) and figure out a system that works best for you, creating quality buyer personas will be a breeze.
Interested in learning more about developing buyer personas for your business? Contact us today! Our marketing experts are happy to help.