When kicking off a website redesign or marketing campaign, it’s crucial that you understand who you’re targeting. Many companies have no idea who their customers are! Creating persona profiles allows you to deliver the message to the right person at the right time.
Personas profiles, or buyer personas, are fictional, generalized representations of your ideal customers. Having a deep understanding of these personas and what motivates them is key to your new website or campaign’s success.
Let’s Get Started – How to Create a Customer Persona
When creating a persona profile, you’ll want to start with a solid creative brief. A creative brief is generated during initial meetings, interviews, discussions and research between a client and designer before the project is started. A creative brief is a mutual agreement between all parties involved and continues to inform and guide your work throughout the project. There are four key components to a creative brief:
- Project Overview
- Project Goals
- Target Audience
- Tone, Message, Visuals and Requirements
What’s the Difference Between a Demographic and a Persona?
It’s important to understand how personas differ from demographics. While demographics are basic information about the customer; such as age, gender and race; personas dig deeper into the personality of the buyer, focusing on what makes them who they are. Personas also help to determine what drives the customer to seek out your services or products.
Depending on your business, you could have as few as one or two personas, or as many as 10 or 20. If you are new to personas, it is best to start small, because you can always develop more later if needed.
What are the Benefits of Creating Personas for your Brand/Company?
Personas help marketing and sales teams identify the ideal customer for you to target. Having a thorough understanding of your buyer is critical to driving product development, content creation, sales follow-up and anything that relates to customer retention.
Understanding the user’s intent is essential. The key to a successful marketing campaign is to deliver the right message, to the right person at the right time!
How to Create Effective User Personas (aka Persona Profiles)
Persona profiles can be created through research, surveys and interviews of your target audience. This could include a mix of prospects, customers and those who might align with your target audience.
Interviewing customers or prospects in person or over the phone is the best way to discover what they like about your product or service. It is important to know your customer insights! Here are some examples of interview questions to get you started:
- What are their common hobbies and interests?
- What challenges do they face?
- What fears do they have?
- What is motivating them?
- Which demographics do they fall into?
- What are their personalities like?
The data collected from the interviews can be used to create your persona profiles, but keep in mind that it’s also important to review analytics data for any information that may have been missed during the interview process.
There are several available tools you can use to pull analytics data, which can answer additional questions and help you further develop your user personas.
- Google Analytics or similar website stats
- User behavior data (Crazyegg, Mouseflow)
- Social media analytics (Hootsuite, Sprout)
- CRM software insights
- Email marketing analytics
Questions data can answer:
- How are buyers distributed in the sales process?
- Are there any trends in content types or topics?
- Which content is more likely to lead to conversions?
- What types of messages get the most interaction?
Data gathered can be used to construct your persona profiles. Keep in mind that you are not drafting a vague idea of who the audience is, but creating in-depth descriptions of hypothetical people with names, hobbies, jobs, likes and dislikes, and more.
The following is an example of a persona:
- VP of Marketing
- 40 years old
- Bachelor's degree
- Makes $80K/year
- Has a team of direct reports
- 20+ years of marketing experience
- Married with two children
- Type A personality; driven; works 50 hrs/week
Ellen loves her job and stands behind her marketing team. She’s always thinking about how she can drive more qualified leads to her sales team. She likes control and is very particular about her marketing choices. She’s willing to test new ideas as long as she can track properly and make data driven decisions. She is a busy person and doesn’t have time to be in the trenches, so she relies heavily on her team and web agency to execute her strategic plans. She’s loyal to no end and appreciates good quality work. She’s willing to pay for a better end product.
- A responsive website design that is works perfectly on any web browser or mobile device
- A clean, modern website with a great design
- An easy-to-use lead generation form
- Beautiful product pages that don’t overwhelm customers but give them enough information to schedule a consultation
At Evolve, one of our first steps when kicking off a website redesign or marketing campaign project is to create personas based on the business or company’s typical user. The details about a typical user help us to build a profile of a potential real user – someone we keep in mind throughout the project in order to create the ideal user experience.
Need help creating your persona profiles? Contact Evolve Creative Group to learn how our experienced web design and marketing teams can help you.