Who are your target customers? Are they like you? Older? Richer? Shyer? Taller? What are their goals and desires? Strengths and weaknesses? Knowing and understanding your target customer base is one of the first steps to reaching them on a personal level (so important!). One of the best ways we know to do that is to create personas.
Personas are fictional depictions of the people you think will all use your product or service in a similar way. Among other things, it can include the age, sex, income, lifestyle, perceived social class, and/or life-stage of your target customers. Building a marketing plan on a foundation of personas can take some extra time and resources in the beginning, but we believe it pays off well in the end. The following are some of the biggest benefits we can see to using personas.
Get into their heads and hearts
Your customers are some of the most important people in your working life. Just as you take time to get to know your boss and colleagues, it's important to become acquainted with your customers. Know their perspectives, likes and dislikes, ambitions and insecurities, and where they spend their time. Every person is unique, yes, but certain types of people will come to you for similar reasons, and knowing those reasons will help you to reach the individuals more precisely.
By knowing what your customers are looking for, you'll automatically know what to provide. The more closely you can tailor your product or service to your customers, the faster you'll see your business grow. The demographic you're selling to will love your product, and they'll tell their like-minded friends, who will tell their like-minded friends, and so-on and so-on.
Personas can allow you to see not only where your customers are, but where they want to be. By growing with your customers, you're more likely to retain them for the long-term. A win-win for everybody.
Better brand messages
Brand loyalty can inspire strong bonds if it's done correctly. Knowing your target customer through personas will allow you to craft your brand voice so it's loud and clear, regardless of which audience you're speaking to.
So, how do you make that happen? Since brand messages all start from within your company, the first step is to give your employees ways to easily identify the intended audience before they start crafting an outgoing message. We do that at Rise by giving each persona a unique name. Then once identified via a persona, creating a common outgoing voice and message is that much easier.
In real Rise life, when a client calls up one of our brand managers with a campaign need, we make sure that we know which target audience we're talking to first and then we can brainstorm about the message based on the persona with our internal team. It saves time and fosters clear communication.
We recently discussed how important it is to attract quality leads. Better leads means more business, which translates to a happier new year for everyone! Accurate personas help you to reach your customers on a personal level, which will tell you when, where, and how they want to receive marketing and how they're likely to respond to it.
Once you know which persona develops into your most successful leads, you can use that information to target sales and marketing even further to attract more of that type of person. With leads, quality Is just as if not more important than quantity. Having a bunch of people look at your website doesn't mean much unless they're motivated to take the next step and invest in your product or service. Direct, targeted messages is the best way to gain their trust and interest.
At Rise, we use at least three personas for each of our clients, depending upon your target user or market groups. This helps us to craft your brand's voice, design, and content in a way that will reach your target customers as effectively as possible. Your customers are just as important to us as you – our customers – are!