Ever wished you could pinpoint exactly who your ideal customers were? That you could understand what they really want, how to help them solve their most pressing problems, and market your business to appeal to them? Well, that’s exactly what buyer personas can help you do! Follow She Hustles Inc’s guide to improve your marketing today!
What are buyer personas?
A buyer persona is basically a fictional representation of your ideal customer, based on real data and educated speculation. Personas generally include information about who your target customer types are, where they tend to be located, what they’re looking for, challenges they face, solutions they seek, other brands they like, and more. Knowing your target customers is a vital first step in marketing your brand and getting sales. And that’s where buyer personas come in.
In fact, a whopping 71% of companies with documented buyer personas beat their revenue and lead goals.
Not bad, right?
The process of gathering the information needed to make a buyer persona is an excellent way to get familiar with your customer base. As a result, you’ll be able to create content that your customers actually want to see, reach them on the social media sites they spend the most time on, and even improve your products/services to meet their needs.
How do I create buyer personas for my business?
Don’t let the marketing jargon put you off. Creating buyer personas is actually a pretty simple process. You’re basically just looking at your existing customers/ideal customers and making a list of important common traits they share. Who are they? What do they do for a living? What do they need? -List their common challenges and needs. What do they want? -List out the goals they tend to have and how your product/service can help them.
Maybe your online nutrition planning service can help them get healthy despite a busy schedule?
Or your social media management business could help them expand their audience without forcing them to learn the ins and outs of new platforms.
Remember, every customer segment values different things when buying, so make sure you’re not marketing your product’s low cost to a customer who cares more about quality or prestige (or vice versa).
Write out the common objections you hear when they’re deciding whether or not to purchase your product/service. Doing this will help you create content and marketing that overcomes those objections.
What do they look for in a brand? List similar brands your customer base tends to trust and buy from.
This information will eventually help you highlight what your brand can offer.
When gathering answers to these questions, the specific path you take will depend on whether you have existing customers or not.
Gathering persona information from your existing customers:
To better understand your target customer, dig into Google Analytics and Facebook Audience Insights. These two tools can help you uncover:
Age, education, gender, relationship status
Devices used online
Your target audience’s favourite pages
Don’t worry about segmenting this information into similar types yet. For now, just focus on gathering as much relevant data as possible.
Try a survey; get persona information directly from your customers by creating a short survey with a service like Qualaroo or a free alternative like SurveyMonkey. You can email opted-in customers a link to your survey or simply host it on your site via a pop-up. Offer giveaways for participation and keep the questions brief to ensure more people follow through.
Don’t have a ton of customers to gather insights from yet?
No worries! You can still get the persona information you need, even if your business is brand new.
Two ideas you can try right now:
Do competitor research
Competitor research tools like Alexa or Quantcast can help you get an in-depth view of the types of customers you should be targeting. Just type in the URL of your main competitor’s site to see visitor information like browsing location, sites visited before that site, visitor gender, education level, keywords used, and more.
Follow your completion on social media
Finding out what kind of audience your competitors have on social media is a great way to determine who your ideal customers are and what they’re looking for. Look at their followers’ pages for background on age, location, and profession.
Pay attention to the kinds of posts they respond to most from your competitors, as well as their comments and questions. You’ll find plenty of psychographic information here to fill out your personas with.
Creating your personas:
Now that you’ve done the research, it’s time to start fleshing out your personas.
Give your personas names and make educated guesses based on the data you’ve gathered. If the majority of your target customers have kids and high pressure jobs, you can guess that one of your persona types is pressed for time.
If they follow certain fashion influencers on social media, you can guess that on-trend brands and products will appeal to them. Obviously, you don’t want to get carried away and make stuff up. But it’s very important that you use the data to make informed assumptions about who your customer is.
Remember those social media comments you looked at earlier? Well, take a couple of the most common ones and add them to your persona template under the “quote” section. This will remind you of what your target customers are saying online.
Keep in mind that as you interact with your customers/audience, you’ll learn more about them. Maybe some of the assumptions you made will turn out to be false. That’s absolutely fine. Buyer personas are meant to change over time to reflect your understanding of your customer base.
And finally, keep your finished personas in mind as you create content and marketing for your business.
You’ll be surprised by how much more focused and effective your content is when you’re trying to reach certain types of people rather than just a nameless “audience” out there.
Now, more than ever, customers want to feel that the brands they buy from “get them”. Generic content and broad marketing simply won’t do the trick any longer. Luckily, buyer personas are an easy-to-create but powerful tool to help you identify and truly understand your primary customers. Try creating a few of your own to start seeing the benefits to your business now.
Have you created personas for your business yet? If not, what’s holding you back? Share your experiences in the comments below!
If you want even more support with this month 1 of the SoMe membership goes into more detail and guides you through the process to ensure you are getting your perfect customer and more sales because of it!