Your ideal customers often share a similar collection of characteristics, motivations, and needs that may surprise you. You can identify the perfect audience for your content marketing by using a clever tool called a buyer persona.
If you are in the early stages of learning how to do content marketing, you may not be sure where to get started. As a content marketing company in Little Rock, iProv knows that the strategy of using valuable content to generate interest, leads, and sales should begin with the creation of buyer personas. These profiles of your target customers provide the context you need to create meaningful messages that truly resonate. The following information will help you craft the buyer personas that lead to effective communication and the start of a promising journey toward content marketing success.
Recognizing the Value
With so many marketing messages bombarding consumers from every angle, businesses rarely get a second chance to recapture a person’s attention or prove their worth. For example, one incorrectly targeted golf-centric email sent to a hockey fan may trigger an unsubscribe, and repeating this mistake can quickly begin to affect the success of your email campaigns. Personas let you turn down the “noise” and appeal to potential customers in a natural and organic way, an approach that is becoming increasingly rare and valued by consumers. When a person feels like you know them, that you understand what appeals to them, and that you can deliver it, they begin to trust you. This trust developed through content marketing leads to loyal customers.
Doing Your Research
Thorough research is at the heart of the buyer persona process. You will need to carefully study your existing customers to identify the traits they have in common. You can do this through passive observations, such as tracking repeat buyer behavior, or directly engaging with people using tools like email surveys. In addition to basic demographic questions about gender, age, and education level, you should ask:
- Where do our most active buyers live or spend most of their time?
Example Insight: We seem to have a lot of repeat customers in Little Rock, Arkansas. More specifically, we see a lot of billing addresses in the Hillcrest area.
- How does this group of customers interact with your business in a way that is unique?
Example Insight: Our Little Rock customers tend to ask for gift wrapping more often than other groups. They also frequently send to non-billing addresses. It would appear they enjoy giving gifts, and interpersonal relationships are important to them.
- What does an average day look like for this group of customers?
Example Insight: According to our surveys and on-site member profiles, our central Arkansas customers are often middle-aged women who exercise in the morning, eat lunch at local restaurants, and shop online in the afternoon while their children are still in school.
Questions like these will help you paint a picture of your target customer based on actual customers’ shared characteristics. As marketing expert Michael King explains on the Moz blog, efforts like these will help you turn the “stick figure” of keyword marketing into an “action figure” of a buyer persona. You have a much clearer idea of what the target customer looks like when you have more defined details.
Connecting the Dots
Consider how you would introduce two friends at a party if you wanted them to hit it off. Would you trade names and walk away? Absolutely not. You might mention a hobby they have in common or discuss an interesting fact about their career accomplishments. Buyer personas are very similar: The more context you give your marketing and sales teams, the more they can use these profiles to build relationships with potential customers through content marketing. Hubspot explains that your persona should be a mix of data and observation-fueled insights on buyer behavior. Use the little details you uncovered through research to invent a person who is as realistic as possible while still reflecting the qualities of a specific group of customers. Your persona should include:
- A stock photo of the persona
- Basic demographics, such as gender, age, income, and location
- A backstory that includes career, family life, and education
- The primary life goals of your persona
- The everyday challenges your persona faces
- Simple quotes that offer insights into your persona’s values
Using the target customers mentioned in the “average day” example included above, you might name that persona “Jane Q. Homemaker” and build a short but informative profile. She is a 46-year-old stay-at-home mom who lives in Little Rock. Jane’s husband works in finance, they have two children in grade school, and she is careful never to forget important events like extended family members’ birthdays and anniversaries. A fitting quote from Jane might be, “I love to celebrate life’s little moments, and I always look forward to surprising the people I care about.” With your buyer persona in hand, your team can reference these insights and craft content that will help you turn more “Janes” into loyal customers.
If you are interested learning how to do content marketing, contact iProv at 501-235-8196 to learn how our Little Rock-based content marketing company can meet your business’s needs.