How can you keep your buyer personas relevant?
By Charlie Britten
03 Aug 2019
Any firm keen to use content marketing will need to understand what buyer personas are about - and making sure the relevant information is included is vital to determining the kind of content you produce.
The buyer persona is a concept well known to marketing professionals. It is a character based on the common characteristics of the target market, designed to provide guidance regarding the sort of concerns, interests, needs and problems they have.
This will enable those writing content, designing email marketing campaigns and devising social media strategies to target those people and focus on their needs and wants. In short, the task of the marketer is to draw people matching this persona to the goods and services that solve their problems and enable them to fulfil their desires.
However, it is important to use good research data to make sure that the persona details are relevant. The buyers may be categorised by any number of characteristics, such as age, income, profession, sex, geographical location and much else. But it is important to be aware just how much of a factor each of these is likely to be and tailor marketing strategies accordingly.
Every so often an amusing survey emerges connecting apparently irrelevant characteristics with consumer behaviour, suggesting that, or example, a man whose favourite colour is green might be more interested in a certain product than a woman whose preferred colour is pink. A key question to be asked is whether these are truly significant factors, or are other characteristics more important?
The answer will vary in each case. For instance, gender can be a clearer determinant of who will buy some products and services than others, partly because some products and services are gender-specific but also for cultural reasons based on perceptions of gender roles.
Perhaps surprisingly, colour can also be significant; there is plenty of research showing that not only is the visual impact of different colours a real thing, but that colour preference does appear to be linked to consumer behaviour.
Indeed, colour can be taken as an example of a cultural factor; for instance, in the UK, as elsewhere, purple is seen as a regal colour, while green is linked to environmental friendliness. In the US, however, green is the colour of envy.
The key when establishing a persona is that it is not simply a case of guessing who will be interested in a product or service and targeting them, but assessing the data when leads emerge. This will show if the kind of people responding match the various elements of the persona. By doing this, it is possible to cut out irrelevant aspects. For example, if the responses come more evenly across the age spectrum than expected, this aspect may be revised.
A key factor to remember with personas is they are based on real people who may become your actual customers, not some fictional product of the imagination. Therefore, the key is to make them more accurate when information is available.
It is also important to update personas and marketing strategies as new trends emerge. For example, if social media marketing is part of the plan, it makes sense to target platforms used by the right demographic. But these are moving targets; for instance, a decade ago the average Facebook user was younger than today. The age, gender or other aspects of the typical Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter user may also change over time.
Similarly, cultural change can alter personas too. Changes to perceived gender roles, for instance, may reduce the extent to which sex is an important factor.
Therefore, while personas are highly important for marketing campaigns, it is important to keep reassessing and updating them, so that their component parts remain relevant.
How BeUniqueness can help
We can help you update every aspect of your digital marketing strategy when it is warranted to ensure it remains relevant. This includes making alterations to your buyer persona when there is good reason to do so.
This fits in with our flexible approach of offering solutions tailored to the specific needs of your firm.