Back in my business journalism days, I wrote for a very specific group of people: Accounts Payable professionals. My typical reader was a mother of two in her mid-to-late 40s. After befriending one of my readers, I connected with her on LinkedIn and printed out her profile picture to hang up in my cubicle—as a reminder of who I was writing to.
I wasn't writing for some blank-faced, no-name A/P Manager. I was writing for Kim.
This made the writing process significantly easier. Since I kept Kim's picture above my monitor, I would "talk" to her as I was writing, which helped me nail down the voice on every single article.
Having such a detailed reader profile made the transition into marketing much easier.
Here in the marketing sphere, where content's getting churned out every day, it's crucial for us to understand our target audience by building a buyer persona out of as many details as possible.
The best customer profiles I've seen are composites of multiple people and are given names that help describe this fictional individual. Example: One client I've worked with targets energetic women who love to have fun on vacation. They call her Latina Fey. This name proved handy, as we could review each other's work and say, "Is this something Latina Fey would care about?" or "Is there a better way we could phrase this to grab Latina Fey's attention?"
Building Your Own Buyer Persona
Note: If you like what you see, check out the downloadable copy of the Persona Builder at the bottom of this article!
Gender: Especially important if you're in a gender-dominant industry, like maternity clothing.
Age: What's the average age of your customer?
Location: Where does your persona live? In addition to focusing on city and neighborhood, you could even narrow it down to townhouse or Cape Cod.
Interests: What is your persona passionate about?
Values: What's important to this individual? Feel free to get religious and political. Is the individual a devout Christian or a bleeding liberal? Is the individual passionate about gun control or the freedom laid out in the Second Amendment?
Favorite Products/Service: What do you offer that your customers absolutely love?
Favorite Competitor Products/Service: What do they go to your competitors for? Where are your competitors currently beating you?
Wants (That your business can fulfill): What wants/needs/desires does your customer rely on you to fulfill? What do you want them to rely on you for?
Wants (That your business may fulfill in the future): What opportunities do you have in the future?
Name: Let the other details guide your decision.
Picture: To be finished after you've picked out the name. You can source this from anywhere—a Google search, Pixabay, Shutterstock, or anywhere else you like to source imagery.
Remember: Anyone who works on your marketing should have access to this profile.
Truth be told, you may actually want to have a few personas in mind for your marketing purposes. After all, the more targeted you can be with each demographic, the better your results will be.
With that in mind, you may want to run through this process a few times to build out multiple personas.
Sourcing Your Information
So, where do you get your customer persona information? There are plenty of resources you can tap, including:
The list goes on and on, but there are all good starting points.
Assistance into the Future
Want your own customer persona template? Click here for a free downloadable PDF!
If you need even more assistance in your marketing objectives, contact us!