Who Are You Writing For: Buyer Personas And Why They Matter

January 14, 2016

Who Are You Writing For: Buyer Personas And Why They Matter

Whatever the nature of your business and regardless as to what you’re selling, the first thing you should do before entering or moving further into the marketplace is to create buyer personas.

A buyer persona goes far more in-depth than a target audience and centres on the key components of the desired end user in much greater detail. This is achieved using industry knowledge, hard data and verbatim quotes from actual buyers, combined to build a dependable and adaptable reflection of who your prospective customers are, what they need, and the ways in which they gather information and make decisions.

Guide to buyer personas

Buyer personas not only aid the art of selling, but also benefit customer satisfaction and trust. This is because you’re selling to the right person in the right way from the very start, rather than using a scattergun approach that could work at first but quickly falter and become vague, irrelevant or unsuitable. For example, if you know that a particular buyer is looking to upscale their CRM system over the course of twelve months whilst simultaneously improving their online security against hackers, you won’t waste time trying to sell them a social media management plan when they already have a Digital Officer.

Semi-fictional character

Who is your buyer? Are they a company founder who runs things remotely, or a studio manager who can always be found in the midst of a client project? Knowing the level of your buyer within their own workplace is the first step to realising how to reach them.

Day in their life

Some buyers may have spare time between 2pm and 4pm, or have jam-packed schedules 8 hours a day. They could work full-time, part-time, or take every other Friday off to pursue personal interests. Maybe they get most of their information via PPC advertising, or social media, or email, or printed materials. This information will help you to ascertain exactly how and when you can get their attention.

Demographic and biographic behaviour

What’s the typical age, income, education and location of your buyer? If they’re in their twenties, they probably access social media multiple times each day; meanwhile, if they commute to London, they could see adverts in King’s Cross on a regular basis. Use key data to shape your means of communication.

Persona’s goals

There’s no point in going in blind. Understanding what your buyers need and strive toward achieving will give you the edge that your company needs over others.

Pain points

What are your buyer’s problems and obstacles? Can you do anything to make their working life easier, their company run more smoothly and efficiency to rise? Find out what you can offer to improve their business operations, then pitch it to them in the most appropriate and effective way.

Information search process

How and when does your buyer access information? If they don’t have much time for emails, yours will most likely never be opened, never mind fully digested. If they prefer phone calls and are happy to talk after business hours, this could be your opportunity to catch them when they’re most receptive.

Type of experience desired

Some buyers might need you to step in every now and then when a problem or project arises, whereas others might want you to become an extension of the company, or even available 24/7. By deducing the ideal business relationship beforehand, you can guarantee that your services will be delivered appropriately from the start.

Common objections

Why has a particular buyer not already signed a contract with one of your competitors? If there’s a tangible reason, tweak your offering so that all qualms will be appeased.

Story format

Whilst bullet points and lists are an excellent way to share information, buyer personas benefit from fluid narratives. This is where you can apply a little creativity whilst sticking to the facts, creating a resource that is clear, comprehensive and cohesive.

Name and image

This is so simple yet so effective. Adding a first name and an image to a buyer persona makes it more visual and thereby realistic, helping everyone in your organisation to memorise different personas without mixing up the details.

Creating buyer personas can take time and a lot of effort; however, the ROI is immediately significant and comes with an impressive longevity. Below are ten main focus areas to include when writing buyer personas, and if you’d like any more advice please do get in touch on 0800 998 7502 or use our contact form.

Guide to buyer personas