By Carrie-ann | Jul 22, 2017 | Internet Marketing, SEO, Useful Tips

The importance of customer personas

Persona marketing is completely revolutionising digital marketing and for good reason. With the potential to double the results seen from all marketing efforts without doubling the time invested in those endeavours, every business should be incorporating customer persona marketing into their overall digital strategy.
If you have been struggling to successfully scale your marketing strategy and see those positive results you have been striving towards, it is possible that you do not have a solid enough understanding of who your target audience is, how they prefer to be communicated with, and precisely what they are looking for.

Addressing the needs and wants of your audience
Humans are emotional creatures, which means that we do not always make logical decisions when making purchases. Our buying habits are influenced by a variety of different things, which naturally include wants and needs, but influences extend far beyond those two variables and into territories that really begin to define precisely who your customers are. If you do not have a comprehensive understanding of those other variables, your marketing strategy simply will not be as effective as it could be.
Say, for example, you sell drill parts. You should know that your customers don’t want the parts, they want what the parts can help them to achieve. The tool will help them to make a hole, into which they can secure a nail, and from which they can hang a photograph of their family, to remind them of good times and to make their house feel like a home. The needs of every customer, whatever purchase they are looking into, are far more deeply rooted than they may initially appear. This is precisely where customer persona marketing comes into play.

Comprehensively understanding your customer base
If your business was based around creating a service or a product solely for your closest group of friends and family, it is highly likely your business would be hugely successful because you inherently know how to sell what you are offering to them. You know what they like and what they don’t, how they like to engage and how they don’t, what they’re looking for from life in the long-term, and what drives them to make the decisions they do. As a business owner, it is your job to endeavour to understand each one of your customers in as much depth as you know your friends and family.
Clearly, you cannot adopt the approach of getting to know every single one of your customers as an individual, but as every business will have different groups of buyers, what you can do is to clearly define the characteristics of each group of your buyers. As an example, your business may attract students looking to create a future for themselves within your industry, hobbyists keen to pursue their interest in your niche, and professionals who want to further their skills. These are very different groups of people, all with their own sets of wants and needs.
Creating a persona for each group will help you to ensure your communication with them is tailored specifically to engage with them in ways they will find meaningful and intriguing. Remember that although you are sending communications to numerous people within each group, they will be receiving your messages as an individual and they need to believe you are directly addressing them, with the aim of meeting their very specific requirements and desires.

Developing customer personas
Understanding the demographics of your existing customer base is imperative for creating your own group of customer personas. A key place to start is to compile a survey containing a number of key questions and sending it out to your existing customers. A gift card or access to a discount code will act as a good incentive to encourage your audience to spend a few moments of their time providing your with comprehensive answers to your questions, and the information you receive back could be invaluable to your business.
As you begin to collate the data you receive, clear pictures of your audience should begin to emerge. You should see between 2 and 7 personas develop, and it is wise not to create more than that number, as you begin to risk the dilution of your marketing efforts. Each piece of new information you receive will inform your marketing strategy and open new avenues for you to explore.

Keeping your established buyer personas in mind, from here you can begin to develop marketing efforts that appeal directly to each group. As you begin to adopt this approach to marketing, you should quickly begin to see your conversions, engagement levels and click through rates increasing, and your overall customer base should expand far more quickly than it would have without a focus on persona marketing.