How to build ‘Customer Personas’ that will drive leads and increase sales for your business
Customer personas are incredibly helpful when you’re looking to market your business. The better you know your ideal customers, the easier it is to tailor your marketing strategies and effectively engage your target customers. In fact, the exercise of building customer personas can also help you to identify ways to adapt your existing service or product, to better meet your customers’ needs. It can also be an enjoyable and enlightening process!
Here’s 7 steps from the Growe Media ‘Customer Persona Playbook’ that will help you to create your customer personas:
- Identify your ideal customers –
Firstly, you need to decide how many customer personas you need to create. Most businesses will have between one to five, with majority settling for three. The key is to only create relevant and unique personas, be careful not to get caught up creating to many personas when some of them could easily fall under one persona.
At Growe Media, we have three customer personas:
(a) Business Owner
(b) Senior Decision Maker (e.g. General Manager/CEO)
(c) Marketing Manager
Each persona has a very different role within the business. They all have different needs and view challenges and opportunities through a unique lens. Their personal and professional behaviours are also different including the places they spend their time, the entertainment platforms they use, and the thoughts that keep them awake at night. While this is a B2B example, you can see why its relevant to identify these personas and target them differently, as you would also do in a B2C environment.
- Be clear about your ideal persona demographics –
Each persona will have ‘ideal customer demographics’ that fall within your target market, but these demographics need to be more specific to the individual persona. For example, your target market might be females aged 20-35, but your persona 1 could be a 27 year old female. To identify target demographics for each persona we recommend listing all demographics within your target audience and refining these to the specific demographics you want to target with this persona.
There is lots of demographics you can look at, but try to include all of the key demographics listed below as well as any others that are relevant to your own customers:
- Marital status
- Number of dependants
- Education level
- Location/where they live
- Understand your customer behaviours –
Getting to know your customers and their behaviours takes time and research, but is crucial to understanding what drives them, and how you can influence them to use your product/service. You can leverage existing research or undertake your own by communicating with your target audience and existing customers.
The types of things you want to find out could include:
- What entertainment do they do/use?
- What social media platforms do they frequent?
- How do they spend their spare time?
- Are they part of any clubs or groups?
- What makes them happy?
- What makes them stressed?
- What brands do they like?
- What are their shopping habits i.e. online of in-store?
- What language do they use in their day-to-day lives?
- How do they socialise and with whom?
- What job/career do they do and what’s their specific function?
- Identify your customer’s specific needs –
This is the most important consideration when working out your target personas. You need to identify what their specific needs and interests are, and determine whether your product/service meets these criteria. If not, then they probably aren’t your target customer, or, you need to adapt your offering to meet their needs.
- Where does your business fit in? –
You’re almost there. Assuming you’ve worked through steps one to four, you now have a good understanding of who your target customer personas are, their behaviours, and their needs.
Now you need to decide exactly how your business is going to solve your customers’ problems and why they would choose to work with you over a competitor. We recommend an exercise of mapping out your services and how these are relevant and of value for each persona.
- Know your customer journey.
This next step might seem obvious, but is so often overlooked. You want to ensure you’re able to provide a clear brief to your marketing team or agency around your customer journey so your marketing and advertising are executed in the most effective way.
It’s important to start reaching out to your customers and analysing existing data you have to find out their total path to purchase. And start right at the beginning, did they know they had a need before they found you?
Try and scope out the following:
- How did they find out about you?
- How far down their journey to find a solution did you come about (e.g. were you top of their list of did they stumble across you in a google search?)
- Have they called your immediately or have checked out your website a number of times before making a call?
- How do they initially get in touch – phone, email, store visit?
- How many touchpoints are there before you get a store visit or a purchase?
If you’re currently investing money in a media and marketing, it’s important that you know where each media platform fits into your customers journey, and that you are tracking what is working well.
You might find that while you’re getting a lot of clicks on Google Adwords, one of your customer personas is actually initially hearing about you via your radio campaign and the click to your website happens after they’re already aware and have an interest in your business.
- Bring your personas to life –
This is the fun bit.
Now you know your ideal customer personas and it’s time to bring them to life. Give each of them a name, and if you’re feeling creative, work on building out customer persona mood boards where you fill out as many relevant things you can think of about each persona – and at the bottom write clearly the problem that your business solves for them.
Now that you have your defined target customer personas you’ll know how to reach them because you know where they’ll be, you understand them and can talk to them in their language. You know exactly what problem your business can solve for them, so you can focus on this within your communication strategy. Put your personas somewhere you can see them so you can refer to this and ensure its always top of mind when making decisions.
And remember; be specific and base your insights on real data and research.
We can help your business to Growe:
If you’re looking for a bit of extra support in collecting insights and understanding your customers then Growe Media is here to help. We love working with clients on building out their customer personas, so please feel free to please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0448835492.