Are you satisfied with your
We all agree that the world has changed forever due to Covid-19. It has presented unprecedented risks as well as opportunities. Buyer's priorities and buyer's behaviours are already changing and it's going to be continued to shift to adjust to "new normal."
Suppose you are a business owner, sales leader or marketing leader. Suppose I ask following five simple questions to you and each member of your team separately.
- Who is your ideal customer? Be as specific as possible.
- What business problem do you solve for your customer?
- Why customer do choose you?
- Why customer doesn't choose you?
- What are the buying criteria for customers?
Now let’s assume everyone honestly gave answers. Now if analyse each response. What are the chances they would differ? Highly likely. Right?
That’s the problem. Right? Because it means there is no alignment. There is also a lack of synergy.
Suppose I can help. Would you be interested?
Let me introduce a buyer persona.
What is Buyer Persona?
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of their ideal customer based on market research and real data about their existing customers.
So Buyer persona has two parts: First who they are so your ideal buyer profile and then their buying behaviour what, when, where, how and why they buy.
Why Buyer Persona?
- Buyer Persona is the foundation of all marketing activities
- Deep understanding of the buyer. Answers key questions such as…
- Who they are?
- What are their goals?
- What triggered buyer to look for a solution? What are their problems or frustrations?
- What outcome do they want to achieve?
- What are their decision criteria?
- What are their common objections?
- What resources do buyers trust as they evaluate their options?
- Where buyers hang out so you can be there
- Who are the key influencers impacting the buying decision and how much influence they wield?
- Who are your real competitors?
- Why customer choose you? Your key strengths against your key competitors.
- Why customer may not choose you?
- Why customers don't choose you? Your competitors' key strengths against you.
- What is the customer’s typical buying process and how long does it take?
- Make the organisation customer-centric. There could be a companywide shared understanding of buyer among different business functions such as sales, marketing and customer service.
- Increase marketing effectiveness by contacting the right customer, with the right content at the right time at the right channel. Better lead nurturing therefore better lead conversion.
- Content Map, with detailed definitions of each Persona, clearly identified stages in each one's buying-cycle, and a list of the content you need to address each one's concern for each stage.
- You can segment customer lists into smaller, more specific buyer persona lists and only target the most specific customers instead of sending out a broad spectrum email to your entire customer base. E-mail Copy & Design
- Better allocation of customer acquisition budget. More effective use of advertising budget.
- You can shorten the sales cycle because you are delivering highly targeted content to the buyer based on which stage of the buying cycle they are. This increases conversion thereby generating more sales.
- The content in all the marketing channels, e.g. website, landing page, blog, webinar, seminar, brochure can be optimised to cater to the needs of different personas. Right content, right person, right channel at the right time.
- New products/services development as well as improvement of existing products and services by keeping user needs and goals in mind.
- New employee on boarding and Sales training. A great educational tool.
Who will benefit from a Buyer Persona?
Anyone who needs to get clarity regarding who is their client, who should be their clients and how to get such new clients.
- Company owners, founders and directors who also involved in sales and marketing
- Chief Marketing Officers, Marketing Managers, Heads of marketing or Digital who needs to acquire more quality leads
- Salespeople who want to close more prospects
- Product Managers who need to improve their products
- Customer Success teams who need to improve overall customer experience
Buyer Persona applies to small, medium and large size businesses as well as non-profit organisations.
How to Create a Buyer Persona?
Creating a buyer persona is both art and science. I have identified dozens of ways to create a buyer persona such as
- Prospects/existing buyer interview
- Your customer-facing team, i.e. sales, customer success interview
- Analytics i.e. Google and Social media
- Dozens of proprietary and non-proprietary tools. I own one such software to create the persona
However, the key is what is your business goal or business problem. The more clarity you have regarding what you want to accomplish would determine the effective and efficient route.
Here is one of the process to discover a buyer persona.
- Identify your ideal/best customers
- Get the demographic, psychographic, behavioural characteristics using tools like
- CRM or Sales & Marketing automation tools
- Website analytics such as Google Analytics
- Social media analytics such as Facebook Insights
- Social media profiles such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter
- Online Customer Surveys
- Now to understand buyer behaviour you must interview those customers as well as non-customers such as prospects, who choose another vendor and ex-customers.
- Tell me what exactly happened which triggered you to search for the solution?
- What did you next? Why?
- Compile and analyse all the research to reveal the buyer persona. It could be single or multiple personas.
- Use CRM or other such software to maintain and use a persona.
Buyer Persona Example
Here is the sample buyer persona template.
Mistakes to avoid while working on buyer persona
- Doesn't get the buy-in, executive support. There is no top-down sponsorship.
- Not prepare the business case for persona development. Not having clearly defined goals.
- Persona doesn't provide real, actionable insights. It just describes buyer i.e. shows buyer profile i.e. Name, photo and demographic data but missing critical part i.e. the buyer’s decision.
- Once the persona created, then never using them
- Gathering unnecessary/petty or irrelevant things like the colour of hair, favourite childhood vacation, for business persona or obvious information.
- Prepared persona by simply making them up by imagination or guesswork. Making stuff up rather than actually interviewing buyers.
- Lack of a dedicated budget. Don't provide a proper budget for developing a buyer persona
- Prepared persona using outdated information about buyers.
- Not knowing how to research your personas.
- Not refreshing or updating persona from time to time.
- Developing a buyer persona on a rush
- Try to create as many personas as they can think of instead of focusing only on their highest revenue-generating personas
Don't have time to discover your buyer persona?
Now you understand why it's critical to know your buyer persona as its foundation for all your marketing activities. You must discover the buyer persona.
You have two choices, either do it yourself or get it done through expert. Both options are OK depending upon your business goals and its priorities.
Outsourcing buyer persona work to an expert like me would save a huge amount of time. Also, you would have confidence as it would be professionally done.
What you will achieve at the end of us working together?
- Your fully built and documented buyer persona
- Identify your best and ideal customers
- Understand their goals, pain points, needs and wants
- Their buying criteria
- Their decision process
- Why do they choose?
- Why they do not choose?
- Their buyer's journey with each touchpoint
- It is the foundation for your marketing strategy
- Creating an informed content strategy
- Brand messaging
- Improved value proposition
- Website optimization plan
- Better allocation of your marketing budget
- How to attract better quality leads?
- How to build and apply your persona as now you understood the end to end process?
- How to prioritise projects?
- How to build new products/services or improve existing products/services? As you now know your customers intimately.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does your buyer persona service cost?
It depends upon your requirement, time and effort, the data you already have, project length. Please contact me and I will give you an accurate price.
How long Buyer Persona project takes?
It really depends on the scope of your project and other variables. But you can get buyer persona done in about a month. Sometimes quicker than that.
There are free buyer persona templates available. Why should I buy your service?
Of course, there are free buyer persona templates. However, all templates follow a rigid structure which may or may not suitable to your unique style or your requirement. I have spent hundreds of hours to produce a buyer persona development methodology which includes software, guide, tools and techniques. As you know it’s critical to make the buyer persona right. So always consider the opportunity cost. What if you have to develop yourself or with someone and it didn’t work. The time and resources you have lost which you will never get it back.
Do you provide a guarantee?
I give a 100% money-back guarantee. If you are not happy with the outcome, you simply let me know and I’ll give you your money back. Every penny.
Would you consider signing NDA of persona project?
I take client privacy very seriously as my reputation is at stake. I am willing to sign NDA if that’s what you need.
How can I build personas if I don't have any data?
You always have some kind of data. So don’t worry, I can help you to find the relevant data. I have identified dozens of data points.
I am doing well. Why should I build a persona?
Persona would help you to do even better. If you would like to further strengthen and consolidate your business, then you should think about building a persona.
Which projects are suitable for a buyer persona?
How many personas do I need to build?
- You have a reasonably valuable products/services not very cheap products/services.
- You want to gain a competitive advantage where the competitive landscape is intense or unknown
- You want to introduce new products or services
- You are selling product/services which are relatively high consideration not low or impromptu buying decision.
It depends upon your business goal of the project. I always recommend starting with the one. Get it done and get the results. You can always build more persona yourself later. However, you may want to limit to around 3 buyer persona to leverage it effectively.Why do I need a buyer persona if my target market is not fixed?
That’s the precise reason you need a buyer persona. Philip Kotler, the Father of Modern Marketing mentioned, “There is only one winning strategy. It is to carefully define the target market and direct a superior offering to that target market. Our business is not to casually please everyone, but to deeply please our target customers.” Seth Godin, an entrepreneur, best-selling author, and speaker, mentioned, “A product for everyone rarely reaches much of anyone. Everyone is not your customer.”Why do I need a buyer persona if I have clarity regarding my target audience?
Having clarity regarding target audience is always a very good thing. However, a buyer persona is not just a buyer profile. It gives much more valuable and vital information such as buyer’s pain points, goals, objectives, decision criteria, buying process and such others. It goes even further than the target audience.I am a small business owner. Do I need a buyer persona?
The buyer persona project would help small, medium and large size businesses as well as non-profit organisations. Having a small business, you have a better chance to leverage the full potential of the buyer persona.Do I need a buyer persona if I have just started my business or I am thinking to start a business?
If your product or service is of high consideration, high-value offering then it would be really useful to do buyer persona project. It wouldn’t cost much and it would relatively quick. But potential benefits could be enormous.What should we capture demographic, psychographic, geographic aspects or buying behavior when creating buyer persona?
Both are important. You can't ignore either of them without a deep understanding of buyer behaviour mere demographic, psychographic, geographic aspects wouldn't much useful. Also, without demographic, psychographic, geographic aspects, just buyer behaviour is not inadequate as you can't practically apply.What do we need to keep in mind when conducting buyer behaviour interview?
What needs to care once I have created a buyer persona?
- Interview can't be structured. It must flow naturally.
- If you don't know what question to ask then ask "Please tell me more." which either reveal more insights and you would also get a chance to ask the question.
- If possible, record the interview. Of course, you must take permission to do that.
- Use them. How you can apply in various functions of business sales, marketing, customer service
- Keep refreshing them as buyers are dynamic.
- Keep track of buyer persona using your CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software and measure its effectiveness.