1. Conduct audience research
First and foremost, you need to find your target audience. If you don't have a clear understanding of who your ideal customers are, you can't create your buyer persona, as your customer persona is someone who represents your target audience.
You need to conduct extensive research about your audience so you can thoroughly understand who represents your buyer persona. Look at who your existing customers are, the type of people who follow you on social media, and who your competitors are targeting. You can look at your social media analytics to help you get a better understanding of who your target audience is.
Some of the information about your ideal customers that you'll want to gather through your research includes age, location, language, interests, challenges, hobbies, marital status, and finances.
Finding this information will encompass a wide range of research, like online research and looking at what competitors are doing, as well as conducting interviews with your target audience, such as current customers and referrals. When you talk to people in your target audience, ask them demographic-based questions. You can also do this with surveys, as some people may be hesitant to share personal information about themselves.
It's also a good idea to take some time to research your competitors so you can see who their target audience is, how it differs from yours, and what they're doing differently from you to appeal to their ideal customers. This can help you with identifying a buyer persona that is unique to your brand.
While conducting research throughout this process, make sure you keep detailed records of everything you find in an organized place so you can easily go back and reference them.
2. Pinpoint customer pain points
After conducting thorough research about your target audience, find gaps in the market and what your customers and audience are trying to accomplish. Essentially, you want to pinpoint customer pain points, as well as their goals. What are their motivations and desires and what challenges do they face along the way? When you understand your buyer’s problems, you can figure out a way to solve them.
You need to figure out the answers to these questions so you can have a solid understanding of who your buyer persona is. Talking to your sales team is one way you can identify your customer pain points, but you can also conduct social listening. Social listening is the process of tracking what your customers say about your brand across various platforms.
Social listening is very important for a business because it gives you a better understanding of what your current and future customers think about you. But it’s also a good way to pinpoint your customer pain points. To conduct social listening, monitor your social media channels and look out for mentions of your brand or keywords that are related to your brand. Once you’ve gathered this information, you can then analyze it to have a better idea of how your customers view your business.
3. Organize your buyer personas
Once you've conducted all the necessary research and have a solid understanding of your ideal customer, then you'll need to organize your buyer personas. You can segment your buyer personas into various groups, such as the number of buyer personas you’ll have and the industries they fall under.
During this step, you should look for any similarities that you’ve gathered from your research. This can include similar challenges, goals, motivations, desires, and so forth. It’s likely that you’ll have more than one buyer persona. You don’t have to identify every single one of them right away, as you’ll likely figure out more buyer personas as your business evolves and your marketing strategies change. But once you figure out how many buyer personas you’re dealing with, you can then segment them into different groups.
How you differentiate these groups is ultimately up to you, but it’s helpful to segment them by industry and job title. If your business sells a range of products that appeal to different industries, then segmenting your buyer persona by industry can be a good first step. Your customers likely have different pain points depending on the industry they work in, so you’ll need separate buyer personas for each one.
You can also segment buyer personas by job title. This is a good idea if you follow the same sales process for all the industries you work with. Your buyer persona should align with the specific job title of your target audience so that they’ll have the same goals and challenges.
4. Create your buyer persona
Next comes the exciting part, which is creating your buyer persona. Don’t attempt trying to create all your buyer personas at once. Instead, focus on one at a time. If you’ve conducted all the necessary information about your target audience, then creating your buyer persona should be relatively straightforward.
You’ll want to give your buyer persona a name, an age, a job title, a home, and any other information you think is important to tie to them. Your user persona may be fictional, but it should represent a real person. Once you’ve covered their basic demographic information, you’ll then want to dive deeper into their personal interests and behavioral traits, including their goals, challenges, hobbies, and objections.
You want to create as detailed a description as possible. The more information you can include, the better. Don’t give yourself too many restrictions with this process, and instead, allow yourself to write down as much as you can.
5. Put your buyer persona to use
Once your buyer personas are drafted, it’s time to put them to use by creating marketing materials and implementing sales strategies. If you have a marketing and sales team in your business, make sure they're familiar with these customer personas.
When you understand your buyer persona, you can create content that is curated specifically for them. This way, you know that your ad campaigns are reaching the right people in the right places, which will help to increase your engagement and hopefully boost sales. With this information, you should be able to create effective marketing materials and develop strong sales strategies.