How to Create Buyer Personas
Creating buyer personas is not an easy task, but one that every business – small or large – should be doing. Why? Buyer personas improve sales, lead to more sales, and help you target new trends that you can “pioneer” into creating your business as an industry expert.
Did you ever think about why you no longer buy a certain item? Simple answer: change. And just as your wants and needs changed, so do your customer’s wants and needs change.
Change is the catalyst for innovation, and buyer personas will help you weather those changes without losing sales. Buyer personas will help you target your most sought-after products and services. Buyer personas will help you get to “know” your customers. They help you predict needs, spot trends, and keep them coming back for more. While buyer personas seem like a lot of work, they are key to successful inbound marketing, sales, growth and brand identity. By partnering with HubSpot, the 602 Creative Studio Team has seen, first-hand, how well buyer personas boost sales and brand identity and act as catalysts for industry know-how.
• Buyer personas help you identify your customer base.
Start to create buyer personas by reviewing your customer base and pick out 3-4 major areas that you see as a trend in your customer base. For example, if you sell software, see what types of software your customers are buying. There may be new items you can direct their way that will be better for their needs. Even a journal article on the pros and cons of software will open up a way for you to gain data to use in building the persona. Even little things can help you target future products and services. Little things open doors to knowledge – and that broadens your knowledge for marketing and targeted sales.
• Personas make you do your in-house research.
I cannot stress this more: You will not have any ideas or clues until you take a long look at your customers and ask more in-depth questions. Example: Customer A is one of your “regulars,” and you have a pretty good idea of what he needs when buying. In the persona, look to see what Customer A’s business role is. This will help you when deciding what to present to him. There are times when the higher the title, the easier to make decisions. This will help you find new ways to solve any buyer challenges.
• How do you communicate with each other (phone, email, in person)?
Knowing what works best will also work best when planning your marketing efforts for better results. If you have known Customer A for some time, dig a little deeper and go personal. Ask about favorite books, activities, education level, family and friends. All of these questions will give you a good idea of how to integrate your products and services to keep Customer A happy and coming back for more. Even adding gender, age and demographics can create noteworthy buyer personas.
• Personas push you to review your analytics for clues.
Your analytics will let you know where people come from, keywords they used to find you, and how long they stayed on your website. This is a key element for helping you get to know your customers, your audience, and figure out exactly what they need and want. Keywords can help you find those that might not be finding you. By sorting and grouping keywords (such as bowling balls, running shoes, etc.) you get more “specific” data that helps you reach those yet-to-be-found customers and future sales.
Don’t forget your local customers either! They might be looking to buy from a merchant that is close and easy to get to rather than pay for shipping. Those are the people you want to target because word-of-mouth is one of the best ways to advertise, get sales and add to your analytics.
• Buyer personas are an incentive to use social media.
People on social media are not just chatting away or posting the latest photos. They also are looking for items, deals and bargains. What they really need is – to find you. People who visit your social media page will be checking you out. They heard about you from someone, and they want to learn more about you. Building a persona from visits on social media can open up new data to use in building better personas for future success.
Just make sure your social media page has a way to connect to your website. From there, make it easy for them to visit your site, find what they want and give you more data to use to build personas.
• Buyer personas make you “Go for the Gold!”
Creating and building buyer personas is not easy. It will take time, patience and a lot of digging. Yet by creating and using buyer personas, you are making yourself a vital part of your customers’ needs and wants. Personas help you position yourself and your products and services as relevant. Personas help you to understand how and why a customer buys and how to take that need to buy to a recurring sale.
• Finally, buyer personas give you a way to see the “human face” behind those sales figures. This is one of the most important aspects for inbound marketing, sales, and being an industry expert. Personas allow you to tailor your products and messages to use your data to your best advantage – customer satisfaction and lead conversion.
It’s not a quick-and-easy marketing plan. It will take time and effort, but it will bring about some very exciting results that will end up being one of those stellar business processes. Want more information? Usability.gov can also give you more reasons to build buyer personas and really see the benefits they bring.
Buyer personas are something that every business should build, grow and maintain. It will bring about an increase in sales, better ways to help your customers, and a way for you to gain that competitive edge everyone is looking for.
More questions? Talk to our Inbound Marketing Team at 602 Creative Studio, and let us help you start building the right personas that will become your best asset!