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Zig Ziglar once said, "If you aim at nothing, you'll hit it every time." That, in a nutshell, is why everyone should be onboard with personas.
If you are scratching your head at that statement, perhaps a deeper look at what a buyer persona is will clear things up. As is often the case, Hubspot has a simple explanation for what a buyer persona is. Hubspot's "How to Create Detailed Buyer Personas for Your Business" states:
"Buyer personas (sometimes referred to as marketing personas) are fictional, generalized representations of your ideal customers. Personas help us...internalize the ideal customer we're trying to attract, and relate to our customers as real humans."
In other words, buyer personas help you to get a clear mental picture of your target audience. Without this clear mental picture, your marketing efforts will be "aiming at nothing", or perhaps worse yet, aiming at everything. Either course is a surefire way to ensure failure of your marketing campaigns.
Consider the following ways creating buyer personas will be of benefit:
1) Buyer personas will guide product and service development.
When developing your product or service, it is essential to have an end user in mind. While it is true that you want your product to appeal to a large audience, creating buyer personas will help you delve into what features and functionality your end users actually want.
Buyer personas thus give you a deeper understanding of the problems your target audience faces and the pain points your audience needs you to address. Using that knowledge, you can tweak your product or service to more closely align with what is of true value to your audience.
2) Buyer personas help you create correct content.
Marketing is about getting the right message to the right audience at the right time. How do buyer personas help you do that?
Creating a good buyer persona is like getting into the mind of your target customer. Personas create a specificity that is sorely needed for effective marketing.
Buyer personas are not just fictional characters. Rather, they are the product of significant research into your marketing analytics. They are built as a sort of aggregate of all the insights you have collected about your customers.
Once you have created solid buyer personas based on your actual customer data, you will be better able to design and implement marketing campaigns that resonate with your target audience at every stage of the buyer journey.
Personas help you to hone in on what your leads want at each step. This makes your marketing campaigns lean conversion machines, with no content wasted because of poor timing or irrelevance. What could be better for achieving positive ROI than that?
Additionally, the knowledge you gain about your customers by creating solid buyer personas will help you determine what form of media in which to produce content. For instance, are your customers regularly consuming written content on your blog, or are they more likely to tune in to watch a podcast or video? Buyer personas can narrow down the content preferences of your target audience.
3) Buyer personas help you identify where your customers are on the internet.
You know the riddle "If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a noise?" Marketing-wise, the answer to that riddle is a resounding "No!" If you craft the most wonderful content on the planet and fail to deploy it where your customers are, it does not make a noise...not even so much as a whimper.
Researching and creating buyer personas will save you from the trap of sending great content into the void. Buyer personas help you answer questions such as:
- On which social media platforms do your customers like to be?
- Are your customers interested in sharing, liking, or following content?
- How much time is your ideal customer spending on social media each day?
- What are the browsing behaviors associated with your target audience?
Finding the answers to these questions is like finding gold, and buyer personas play a big role in defining those answers.
The Bottom Line on Buyer Personas
Buyer personas help you funnel all the information you have acquired about your customer data base into human-sized, understandable patterns. Once you discern the patterns, you can tailor your product or service and your marketing message to specific segments of your audience. This laser focus enables you to get to the right person with the right message at the right time.
Do you need help to manage all the moving parts of your inbound marketing strategy? Do you want to know which apps will provide the most bang for the buck for your business? Contact us today and let's begin a conversation about your goals and how best to achieve them.