Updated: Apr 14, 2021
Understanding your target audience is at the heart of all effective business strategies.
That’s why more than 90% of the top-performing companies effectively segment their target customers using buyer personas.
But, many are still not clear how to build a target buyer persona or utilize it.
So, here you'll learn about:
What is a buyer persona
Why create a buyer persona
How to create it
Where to find data about your buyer persona
At The Scalelab we care about helping you perform better at lead generation and customer acquisition. And knowing who you target is an essential part in the process.
What is a Buyer Persona?
A Buyer Persona is a semi-fictional avatar of your ideal customer with all the qualities, values, interests, goals, and problems that they might have. And which your product/service would solve.
This definition can be attributed to a positive buyer persona (i.e. people who are likely to buy your product). But marketers also use the concept of negative buyer personas (i.e. people who would NEVER buy your product).
Why Negative Buyer Persona?
This would rule out people who would never buy from you, and thus, divert your resources to those who’d be interested in your product/service.
You can make a negative persona by considering aspects like affordability, relevance to their needs, resonance with brand values, location, and more.
Why Create a Buyer Persona?
You might be wondering why can’t I just shoot 100 messages at 1000s of random people and hope for results? Why all this fuss, right?
Well, not only will this harm your brand and your domain (you will be flagged as a spam) but it's also ineffective to waste time contacting people who might not be your target.
On the other hand, a buyer persona gets you...
Better Lead Generation
Statistics tell: companies that exceed their revenue and lead generation goals are 4x more likely to use buyer personas. It talks volumes about the importance of having a buyer persona in the lead generation and acquisition process.
Better Customer Relationships
Buyer personas make it easy to manage all your customer data and build stronger long-term relationships. You can personalize your strategies and propose value in line with your customer’s goals and interests.
Better Revenues & ROI
With well-defined buyer personas, you don’t waste resources on customers that do not fit the ideal image. Also, you can define, segment, and target your potential customers to scale your strategies and thus, a better return-on-investment (ROI). A win-win, we say!
How to Create a Buyer Persona?
Mark up your marketing game with this step-by-step guide about buyer personas.
NOTE: some of the information and questions might not be relevant to your industry. So, while examining various touchpoints, feel free to pick and choose what works for you and your industry.
We suggest — Ask yourself whether or not each piece of information can contribute to identifying your buyer / prospect. It's about identifying patterns and common traits.
Step 1/ Identify the Basic Details
Define these quantitative data-points about the personal & professional details of your customers.
Country / City They Reside
Type of Location (Rural, Suburban, or Urban)
Married Or Single
Number of Children
Defining Character Traits (Conservative/Liberal, Spendthrift/Careful, Bright/Sober, etc.)
Company / Industry
Company Type (SME, StartUp, Listed Company, etc.)
Yearly Revenue of the Company
Goals / Objectives
Technography (What softwares do your prospects currently use)
Preferred way of communication (Emails, Phone, SMS, Social Media, etc.)
Members in house
Who makes purchase decisions?
How purchases are made (Online / Offline)
When do purchases peak? (Holidays / Seasons / Sale)
Frequency of Purchase?
Step 2/ Establish Clear Goals and Pain Points for Your Ideal Buyer
They are the defining, qualitative features of every buyer persona. It's about knowing what your persona needs to achieve.
Goals, Values & Pain Points
Most important Key Performance Indicator (KPIs) — (Profit Margin (PM), Cost-per-Click (CPC), Average Daily Attendance (ADA), etc.)
Challenges faced while achieving these KPIs
Values driving major decisions
What is success measured on
Step 3/ Track Patterns and Draw Similarities
Data might help you be specific, but you still need to generalize a lot while creating a buyer persona. Start by drawing similarities in the interests, goals, problems, and preferences of your customers.
Is there a broad behavioral category you can place them in?
Do they share some common interests?
Can you summarize their problems in one statement?
Can you draw sub persona groups based on their needs?
At The Scalelab we identified that SMEs typically work with us because they need to save time (lack of sales resources) and get strong results while Larger Companies don't have an issue of time saving (they usually have plenty of resources) but their challenge is to get strong results.
Step 4/ Make a Human From Your Data
At this stage, you have all the information you need about your buyer persona. Now…
Determine how many personas you need to represent all your customer bases.
Process the information, narrow down and discard useless data.
Create a human figure with a balanced yet instinctive approach. Remember: you are marketing to humans. (Which is the purpose of this whole activity!)
You can build your own Buyer Persona with HubSpot’s FREE Buyer Persona Builder Tool.
Where to Collect Customer Data for Buyer Persona?
To create a basic skeleton of your buyer persona, you need data – a mix of qualitative and quantitative information. You can look for data in places like:
Examine your and your competitor’s website. Start with tracking basics, mainly about who is interested in your product, where they live, are they browsing through mobile or laptop, etc.
2. Website & Exit Surveys
The best part is that surveys are short and easy for your customers — but loaded with data for your company. They reveal different or similar patterns, preferences, and are mighty helpful for developing and improving your buyer personas.
3. Sales & CRM Data
Review the existing customer data and reports to study your sales cycles, what persona has interacted most (or least) with you, where most of your revenue comes from...
✅ If you don' t have a CRM yet, it's time to get on board! We do recommend HubSpot as it offers a comprehensive free version that allows you to get started with the basics.
Tools You Can Use To Extract Customer Data
Brand Watch — Its consumer research gives you access to insights from about 100 million online sources.
Similar Web – Track your competitors and analyze their traffic source.
Statista – Find industry website benchmarks (eCommerce conversion rates, audience interest, etc.)
Unmetric – For social media analytics and strategy.
Crayon – Track your competitor's digital footprint (pricing change, new offers, etc.)
🎯 How to Use & Implement a Buyer Persona? 🎯
You know the what, why, how, and where. How do you now use buyer personas?
1. Tailor ALL content and campaigns for each buyer persona
Every marketing communication you do needs to be as per the interests and goals of your buyer personas.
2. Allocate Your Ad Spend and Human Resource Wisely
Are there certain personas that generally contribute more to the revenue? Allocate a greater portion of your marketing budget to warm up these leads for better ROI.
In the same way, allocate less resources on prospects that you identified as being less revenue generating.
3. Segment Your Email and Contact Lists
Knowing what persona you target will help you generate better results by also crafting a dedicated message.
Using or not using a buyer persona is your choice. Remember though, you can only aim at something if you can visualize it.
Each company will have a specific buyer persona based on historical data and some level of assumptions. Narrowing this down is the first step to any of your sales and marketing initiatives.
Great buyer personas are detailed and help you craft better strategies to scale up your engagement and business growth.
And if you need any help, just shoot us a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Happy Scaling 🚀