The world of sales and marketing is all about thorough planning and measuring.
We obsess over making sure everything we do is setting us up for success. Tools that push automation, data, and detailed buyer personas help us personalize our sales and marketing efforts, thus enhancing each channel and driving more conversions.
A recent survey shows that 97% of professionals consider it important that vendors have relevant content that speaks directly to their company. And to achieve that, you need buyer personas.
What are Buyer Personas?
Buyer personas are fictionalized representations of your current customer base’s general characteristics, interests, and behaviors and your potential customers. Building detailed and thorough Buyer Personas will help you better understand those prospects that are a good fit for your product/service.
With well-developed Buyer Personas, you can shape your communications and highlight specific ways your services can benefit their business efforts and address their pain points and needs with more streamlined, focused, and successful approaches.
Basically, your Ideal Buyer Profile or Buyer Persona is a culmination of quantitative research, anecdotal observation, and existing customer data that ensure that everything you do in terms of lead generation and customer acquisition is tailored to your targeted buyers’ needs.
Use your Buyer Personas to build content strategies that build trust and reliability by helping you:
- Focus keyword searches
- Improve SEO strategies
- Refine copywriting
- Aid in the prioritization of promotional campaigns and activities
- Personalize your communications and better nurture your leads
Why Marketing and Sales need Buyer Personas?
Buyer Personas are a crucial step in setting up your marketing and sales campaigns for success. All the effort you put into developing your strategies can potentially fall on deaf ears if you don’t develop your Buyer Personas correctly.
Your bottom line and customers will thank you if you invest the proper resources upfront to build your Buyer Personas.
Your marketing and sales teams will be stronger thanks to your Buyer Persona because IBPs (Ideal Customer Profile) help them understand your customers and prospective customers better to better tailor content, messaging, product development, and services to meet the specific needs, behaviors, and concerns of your target audience.
For example, you may already know your target buyers are C-Level executives and sales managers, but do you know their specific needs and interests? What channels do they use to research? Etc. Knowing what makes your best customers tick is critical to developing detailed personas for your business.
You can have from one to as many as ten or more Buyer Personas, depending on your business. However, start small if you’re new to IBPs and develop more persona later if you need to.
What are the types of Buyer Personas?
As you start building your Buyer Personas, you might start wondering about the different types and the possibility to adjust an existing persona to fit your business.
However, that’s not how Buyer Personas work. There’s no set list of universally-recognized buyer personas to choose from, nor is there a standard for the number of personas you need. The number of buyer personas and the specifics of their characteristics are unique to your company.
Although there might be some general categories for Buyer Personas such as Marketer, HR Rep, IT Manager, CEO, etc., your Buyer Personas will be unique for your brand.
“Negative” Buyer Personas
This kind of exclusionary persona is a representation of who you don’t want as a customer. This will help you hone your target audience better by excluding prospects that are not a good fit.
For example, you might want to exclude companies who are not yet ready for your price range or product/service. Others might include students who engage with your content for research or knowledge.
How to Create Buyer Personas
Buyer Personas are created by gathering and organizing information about your ideal buyer through research, surveys, interviews, and historical data.
Some practical ways to gather the information you’re going to need to build your Buyer Personas include:
- Analyze the data in your contact database to uncover trends.
- Capture relevant data through contact forms.
- Listen to your sales team’s feedback regarding generalizations about the different types of customers they deal with.
- Interview customers and prospects to discover what they like about your product or service.
You’ve gathered all your raw data, and now it’s time to organize it into a useful tool everyone in your organization can use. Let’s build a Buyer persona that contains the following sections:
- Fill in your persona’s basic demographic information.
- Include all relevant data and add some descriptive words to help infuse personality into your content.
- Share what you’ve learned about your persona’s motivations.
- This is where you’ll identify your persona’s pain points, needs, and problems.
- Help your sales team prepare for conversations with your persona.
- Create detailed descriptions of how your persona communicates, what they need, and how you can help them.
- Craft messaging for your persona.
- Describe the tone of voice and mannerisms to use when communicating with your Buyer Persona.
Ensure your Buyer Personas are well developed and include as much detail as possible to help your sales and marketing teams do their jobs better. Remember to name your persona with a unique name that identifies them clearly, for example, CEO Larry, Sales Manager Saul, etc.
How to Use Buyer Personas to Enhance Your Sales and Marketing
Our Buyer Personas’ main objective is to enhance our communications with our prospects to reach those that have a better potential of becoming clients. Here are some of the most important ways you can use your Buyer Personas to enhance your sales and marketing efforts:
- Segmenting Your Email Lists by persona and send offers that are targeted to each group’s respective preferences.
- Personalized email messages can increase click-through rates and increase open rates by 26%.
- Identify Influencers to leverage the voice of someone who already has the ear of your best buyers.
- Time Your Marketing Campaigns using tools like Google Analytics to identify peak engagement rates.
- Selecting The Right Channels so you can distribute personalized messages on your Buyer Persona’s preferred channels.
- Personalize, Personalize, Personalize to resonate with the right people, drive different personas into different marketing funnels, and can create sales scripts that are tailored to the specific pain points of each of your personas. Plus, you can also:
- Referencing different kinds of content already written for each persona.
- Create personalized, responsive website content.
- Personalize alternate nurture drip campaigns.
- Write better conversational AI.
- Create more effective advertising campaigns.