“Think like your customer” “Put yourself in your customer’s shoes” and so on. These are some of the most repeated phrases of a business and like all other most cited words/phrases very few attention is paid to them. Every business owner/marketer agrees that you need to get an idea of your customer’s choices, his needs , problems which he is facing but very few follow this advice and even those who follow don’t have any idea how to think like their customer.Marketers have tried to solve this problem by coming up with “Buyer Personas” .

What is a Buyer Persona

In marketing circles one frequently comes across this term but very few people have any idea of what is meant by a buyer persona. A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer or a segment of your target market. Please note that I’ve used ideal person as a synonym for a segment of your target market. Because in reality not all of your target customers are your ideal ones or those for whom you are looking.

buyer persona

If we talk about B2B marketing many people say that CEO or Management of a company are their target markets. This is not a buyer persona , this is just a demographic or title of their ideal customer. A buyer persona includes every detail which is worth paying attention. A buyer persona includes the experience of a person, authority he has over decision making,his business objectives, his past experience with a similar product/service like yours, challenges he faces in achieving his business objectives and how you can help him in reaching his goals.

How to make a Buyer Persona

In B2B sales cycle often there are more than 1 person who are going to make purchase decision. And upto a certain level in B2C cycle also there are very few decisions based on the sole decision making of a single person. Consider this for every significant investment such as buying a new car or house a person is going to ask many people for advise these people can be his/her spouse, friends ,co workers etc. In B2B also no single person has full authority to make new purchasing decisions without taking their seniors, co-workers in confidence. Most often the person who is going to make the decision will not be using the product/service himself instead the people who will be using the product/service will play an important role in buying process but they rarely have the authority to make purchasing decisions.

If you are making the same mistake of confusing demographic with buyer persona then stop for a moment and think that even if you are able to get CEO of a company engaged in a conversation and he shows an interest in your offering it’s quite likely that he will need to explain the new investment in your product/service to others involved in the decision making process.

Essential elements of a buyer persona:

  1. Role and Responsibilities : The first step to make a buyer persona is to identify your ideal customer by the role and responsibilities he has.
  2. Business Goals: What are their business goals and what they are expected to achieve for their organization.
  3. Profile: How old is your target buyer persona. What is their role in their organization, how much financial decision making authority they have .
  4. Problems they face: What kind of problems they face in their life. This is one of the most important parts of creating a buyer persona dn if you nail this right then you’ve won half of the battle.
  5. How they measure success: Their definition of success is very important. Your marketing message must be delivered to them in such a way so that they see a direct co-relation between their own success and your product/service.

After answering all of these questions you can ensure that your message resonates with your target customer. A Your goal must be to craft a message which will resonate with your buyer persona . If you think I’ve missed out on anything important then please inform me using comments. Also subscribe to our Blog in order to get our future posts on Inbound Marketing and Buyer Personas directly in your inbox.