To drive sales to your business, you need to market to the correct people – which may seem obvious, but can be tricky. Creating buyer personas is the foundation of a solid marketing strategy that does just this. Here is the information you need to develop, work with, and drive results with buyer personas.
What Is and How Do You Create a Buyer Persona?
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your company’s ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers. It can include information about their demographics, career, hobbies, and more. Creating them helps you clearly define your target audiences, and then create marketing campaigns to present to them. You’ll more than likely need more than one persona.
The process of creating your buyer personas may take a lot of time – but it’s well worth it. To begin, start looking at who your company already targets, even if you don’t have a “buyer persona” written down. Make a note of who is similar, who isn’t, and who brings in the most revenue. Then you can determine how many true buyer personas your company needs, and then research each persona.
Start by unveiling information about their career, purchasing behavior, demographics, goals, financial status, and personal interests. If you need help figuring out what to include, consider finding the answers to these questions:
- What is his or her age?
- What is their income?
- What is the highest level of education they’ve completed?
- Where do they live?
- Where do they work?
- What is their job title and job function?
- Do they have children or a spouse?
- What are their hobbies?
- Do they volunteer or participate in any activities or organizations?
- What is a typical day like in their lives?
- How often do they buy products online versus in store?
- What makes them buy a product or not buy a product?
- Do they use social media?
- What blogs or news sources do they read?
- How often do they check their email?
- Are they a decision maker at their company?
- What are their challenges at work?
- What frustrates them?
- What are their successes at work?
If all of this seems like too much for one person on your team, then you’re correct. Crafting the perfect buyer persona or personas for your business is a team effort. Pull in your marketing and sales teams to determine what they need to know. After you’ve collaborated, you can strengthen your buyer persona research by interviewing current customers. When doing customer interviews, you may want to ask more focused questions (on top of our previously outlined ones) that relate to their experience with your product or service, such as:
- How did you hear about our company?
- What attracted you to us initially?
- What was the first impression of us?
- Who was conducting the research of our company on your team?
- What was your biggest concern about doing business with us?
- What was your most prominent reason for doing business with us?
- How was the buying process?
- What could we have done better at any stage of your business with us?
- How could we reach more people like you?
Once you feel you’ve done sufficient research, you can begin piecing your personas together. When doing so, include a name and image along with the information you uncovered. Here is an example of a basic buyer persona:
How Do You Apply Your Buyer Personas to Your Website and Content?
Once your buyer personas are finished, you can use them as a reference to start enhancing your marketing efforts – and subsequently, your sales revenue. To do this, start thinking of how you can apply the information from your personas to your website and content. An audit of the following elements can help ensure you’re properly applying your buyer personas to these pieces.
When you look at your website, do you notice any unnecessary elements in your navigation? Try limiting this to pages that are important to converting your personas by asking yourself, ‘what content do they need to see?’ When you cut away the “fluff” from your website architecture, not only will it be beneficial to your personas, but it also boosts your SEO.
The layout of your site should prioritize the information and content that your users need to answer their questions and address their pain points. So, with your buyer personas in mind, organize these components from top to bottom – with the most relevant content for your personas at the top.
If you’re not sure if your website layout is strong or not, you can ask your customers to conduct usability tests. Ask them to complete tasks on your website, see where they go, where they stumble, and what you could improve.
Headlines and Copy
This is an easy website element to audit. Start by looking at your headlines and related copy to see if they’re straightforward. Are you asking the right questions and promoting the benefits that your personas care the most about?
To better appeal to your top personas, use HubSpot’s smart content tool to display more relevant copy based on your users’ tracked data.
Website Content and Other Content
One of the main purposes of your buyer personas is to enable your marketing team to come up with content that appeals to your audiences. With your buyer personas in tow, you should know what challenges they face and thus, can offer content that helps them get ahead or solve a problem.
Your persona research also allows you to know your audiences’ content preferences like:
- Technical tones or relaxed tones
- Video or text
- Blogs over checklists or infographics
- Premium content like eBooks
- Favorite social media channels
How Do You Drive Results Using Buyer Personas?
Now that you know how to apply your personas to your website and various content, you may wonder how you can use them in different ways to drive real results for your business. Here’s how you can do that:
Define Your Ad Spend and Customize Your Ad
With clearly defined personas, you’ll have a better understanding of where they spend their time online. When you couple this information with analytics, you'll know what they like best. Then, you can use this information to identify when, where, and how much to spend on ads – whether they end up being paid social ads, Google Ads, or something else.
When coming up with the copy for these ads, your buyer personas will reveal what messaging is appealing to what user. That information can ensure the text or images in your ad appeal to your user which will help your ads perform better.
Segment Your Lists to Personalize Their Experiences
The key to delivering more personalized experiences to your leads is list segmentation. Use your buyer personas to segment your lists in your marketing platform and begin sending relevant campaigns to your personas. For example, if you know one of your target audiences struggles juggling tasks, you can tailor your messaging to touch on that pain point. One method to ensure you segment by the right buyer persona is to include questions on your landing page forms that relate to your personas.
Optimize Your Landing Pages
If your next marketing campaign utilizes a landing page, make sure conveys to the persona you’re targeting. Use the language they prefer and show how that piece of content can help them solve a problem, or make a portion of their job easier.
Similar to your website pages, you can utilize HubSpot’s smart content to tailor your landing page to your personas. With its machine learning capabilities, you’ll be able to display relevant messaging to the correct persona.
BONUS: Combine Your Personas with Lifecycle Stages
Lifecycle stages show how far along someone is in your company’s sales cycle. By adding this element to your efforts, along with your buyer personas, you can create content for the right people at the right time. Hopefully, this hyper-targeted strategy will move them to the finish line of your sales cycle much quicker!
What Else Do I Need to Know?
The most important thing to remember after creating your buyer personas is not to forget about them. Some companies put forth the effort to craft them, then don’t utilize them. With our tips and suggestions, you should be able to create thorough personas then employ them.
At LyntonWeb, we recognize that buyer persona creation is no easy feat. We’ve helped several companies create and market to their personas. If you would like more information or direct help, contact us today.