The buyer persona is an important component of any effective marketing strategy. The truth is, you have to know who you’re marketing and selling to before you can make an actual sale. Today’s consumers only pay attention to marketing messages that are personalized, and highly relevant. Buyer persona characteristics are a key way to address that consumer need. Check out our step-by-step guide on how to become your buyer persona. Let’s get started!
We can say the words “Buyer persona” as many times as we want, but the key is how to actually create or define one. That is why we have prepared this step-by-step guide to help you define your buyer persona. Here you will learn what a buyer persona is and how to define them in a clear and manageable way (we hope) step by step. Let’s get started.
Buyer Persona Definition
The first part of any great step-by-step guide to defining your buyer persona should be a definition of what a set of buyers with different buying motivations really is. Buying personas are an integral part of any quality marketing or sales plan. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer or target audience. This helps paint a clear image of who you are marketing to. In fact, it’s much easier to develop effective, targeted content when talking about your ideal buyer’s goals and challenges.
Think of your buyer’s characters as a narrative. You are developing a contextual story for people who are most interested in your product or service. For this story, you want to know as much as possible about them, in order to be able to offer personalized service, relevant content, and useful sales information.
5 steps to creating a Buyer Persona – A Step by Step Guide
Defining them can seem like a complex and difficult task. But, if we break the process down into simple steps, you can go step by step to develop a thorough buyer persona that will really improve the way you market and sell. And don’t think that you have to create all the characters of the buyers at the same time; Doing it step by step is a great way to make sure you have all the bases covered, without feeling too overwhelmed. This step-by-step guide to defining your buyer persona is designed so that you can come and go when it is most convenient for you. With that in mind, let’s go to step 1.
Step 1: Research your clients or potential clients
All the great characters start with a little research. Even if you feel like you already have a good understanding of who the majority of your customers are, it’s worth taking a look, not just at who your customer is already, but who you would like them to be in the future.
Who is buying your product or service?
It is always easier to start with what you know. Start your research by taking a look at your current clients. Here are some questions to get you started:
- Who in your company contacted them first?
- Were they the ones who made the final decision?
- What is your job?
- Are they the main point of contact for your company?
- What are your roles at work?
- Do they manage people or processes?
- Do they have to answer to a boss or supervisor, or do they make most of the decisions?
- What is your family life like?
- Do you have a hobby?
- How old are they?
- Are they married or single?
- Do they have children or not?
- What do you do in your day to day?
- Where do they look for the information?
- What are your main objections to our product or service?
These may seem like a lot of questions but they are already part of your “Buyer persona definition and step-by-step guide” process. These questions will help you get started, but you can also consider the following points when researching a buyer:
Talk to sales or CRM teams
Your account managers will have the best view of the life of your clients since they are the ones who are in direct contact with them. Talk to your company’s employees to get a better idea of the people your company is already working with.
Talk to your Clients
If possible, it’s also a great idea to talk to some of your current clients. Consider sending a short survey to your main points of contact, asking them a little about themselves. You may have to send a small incentive to fill it out, but their responses will be well worth it. After all, the people who have already invested in your product or service are in fact your ideal audience.
Who are your ideal future Clients?
Once you’ve gathered as much information as possible about your current customers, think about who you’d like to sell to in the future.
Is there some kind of buyer persona that your sales team cannot convert? Perhaps your competition has been very successful in a certain segment of the market that you would also like to enter.
To reduce the number of potential customers, we suggest that you start by taking a look at your competition.
Where is the competition’s success?
Are your competitors succeeding in a certain market segment you would like to enter? Take a look at their website!
They are probably developing content and sales offers that speak directly to that market. You can learn a lot about those ideal buyers that you have not yet reached by watching your competition succeed.
Take a look at your own data
You won’t find better and more concrete data on your ideal buyers than through your own website analytics, social media ads, and pay-per-click ad campaigns.
Take a look at the reports for each one, and pay special attention to the demographics of the people who click on your ads.
- When you’re looking at your website analytics, see which pages your visitors visit the most, and for the longest periods of time.
- Are there content offerings that are downloaded more often than others?
- Who downloads those offers?
The answers to all of these questions provide you with useful information and data you need to compile relevant and effective buying personas.
Step 2: Segment or group clients
To be honest, the research step is the most time-consuming. Once finished, feel free to step back and take a break. Leave that investigation alone, and let it marinate for a while. When you return, you will have everything you need to start writing your buyer personas.
Organize your information
Now it’s time to organize all the research you’ve collected. You have probably learned a lot about a variety of your clients. Start looking for similarities in the goals and challenges you have discovered in your research. These similarities – in what customers and prospects are looking for from your company or its product – will help you group all the many potential customers into different groups of buyers.
Decide how many buyer personas you will have
You can start to determine how many personas you will actually define, based on what was mentioned above. It’s good to remember that you don’t have to cover everyone right now.
If you’re just getting started, it may make more sense to create them only for the market segments you sell to the most. You can always add or change buyer characters as you learn more about your marketing strategy. Think that what determines the number of people are the motivations they have to buy our product.
Step 3: Create a name and story
You have completed and decided which buyers to start with. Each one writes differently, so do what works for you. I always find it easier to paint a complete picture of your buying persona and then draw the most important segments for the final character that you share with the rest of your team. Here’s what that process might look like:
Who is your buyer persona?
Start by giving your buyer persona a name. The goal of defining buyer personas is to help you market and sell more personally. Giving your buyer persona a name makes it personal. Once you have a name in mind, start writing down everything you’ve found in your research.
- How old is your character?
- What job titles can they have?
- Where they live?
- What hobbies do they have, and what do they like to do outside of work?
- What are their professional goals? Are they looking to move up, or just hoping for retirement?
The answers to all of these questions, and to any other you can think of, help provide context for your buyer persona’s goals and motivations. The better you understand what they want and why they want it, the better you can interact with them in the future.
Try to create a complete profile to work with him or her
When it comes to a buyer persona, more information is always better. Challenge yourself to free writing. Set a 15-20 minute timer, and write down everything you know about this buyer character. And don’t be afraid to get a little creative!
So, get down to writing, and see what you can do to make it fun. You can always get content, but it is good to get carried away by the creativity, and paint a complete picture of this buyer persona. The more content you have in this step, the easier the next one will be.
We are almost there, we are only one step away from paining the full picture of how to build your buyer persona step by step.
Step 4: Focus on roles, goals, and challenges
Let’s take a look at the narrative you just created, and bring out the most relevant parts for your sales and marketing teams that are going to move forward. That information is divided into three categories: roles, objectives, and challenges.
You have a complete written picture of who your buyer is, what they do, and what they want. Take a look at that narrative, and pull out the information that is related to your “roles.” This is going to be content that is relevant to your job and your role at work. You can also talk about your role at home or away from work.
Are they regular volunteers? A father? Do they manage people at work? All this information gives you the context of what they are really good at.
What’s more, it tells its marketing and sales teams what they do. When you know what a person does, and what roles they play in their lives, you can create content that speaks to those specific roles.
Understanding what your buyers want is the key to offering them the marketing content and sales service that will really help them.
Maybe your buyer character is looking for ways to improve the profitability of his or her business. Perhaps they have the goal of moving up in the company and are looking to lead initiatives that exemplify their leadership qualities. On the contrary, perhaps your buyer persona is nearing retirement and wants to do his or her job well without making waves until safely retiring.
Take out all the objectives that you identified in your buying persona and organize them in an objective section. Understanding the objectives of the buyer persona is key to offering them a personalized and useful service.
When your team understands what a character is trying to achieve, even if it is not directly related to what your company offers, they will be able to better adapt their methods and strategies in a way that resonates with that character.
The challenges section of a buyer character is the most important. This is where you identify the weak points of each buyer persona. And when you understand your buyer’s weak points, you can work to resolve them.
Take a look at the long narration you wrote for your buyer character.
- What prevents you from achieving your goals?
- What parts of your job are difficult?
- Having trouble selling initiatives to your boss?
- Are you worried about making big investments?
- Are you so busy that you don’t have a chance to even consider how you could improve your business?
Whatever their challenges are, this is the place to call them out.
Take the time to be specific here. The more challenges you can identify for each person, the more opportunities you will have to offer solutions. And the more solutions you deliver, the more attractive and useful your company will be to those qualified leads.
Step 5: Use your buyer persona to create bespoke sales strategies.
With everything mentioned in “Buyer persona definition and step-by-step guide”, you now know who your buyers are and you are familiar with their functions, objectives, and challenges. You can now develop sales and marketing strategies tailored to the people you have identified as your target audience.
You’ve gone through the process of creating these buyer personas, now is the time to use them!
- Helps familiarize your sales and marketing teams with each persona
- Create advertising campaigns that correspond to each person’s favorite platform
- Develop content that speaks to the specific pain points and challenges identified.
- Take inventory of your existing content, speak to one or more of your characters? If not, make some changes.
- Optimize your landing pages to speak to buyers’ personas, and in their language.
Buyers help you gain insight into how your most qualified leads work. From their favorite social media platforms to how they talk about their career goals, you already know a lot about these characters, and you can use that information to their benefit and theirs.
Work to create the content those personas want to read, and develop sales and marketing strategies that put the goals and challenges of your buyer’s personas front and center.
We hope that this article on Buyer persona definition and step-by-step guide has helped you to better understand the concept and will help you create as many buyer personas as you need.