Creating a buyer persona helps you focus on WHERE to market

Effective marketing begins with knowing your customer.

Creating a Buyer Persona

Creating a buyer persona helps you get into the minds of your target audiences.

Admittedly, there’s no way to 100% know your buyers, but creating a buyer persona provides a good starting point for better understanding your audiences’ needs, desires, and frustrations, and provides direction through many potential pitfalls.

Buyer personas don’t determine the exact people you need to reach, but they help facilitate the gap between specificity and generality. The space between these two extremes offers the greatest range of opportunity in your marketplace.

Placing your full attention on an ultra-specific audience could give you definite results but limit future lead generation. On the other side, a general focus diminishes any sense of direction, running you at a higher risk of a wasted budget and a lower possibility for reaching the right people.

Positioning lights the way

Innis Maggiore finds the perfect balance using the power of positioning.

As a strategy, positioning guides you toward owning a meaningful and differentiated idea in the mind of the prospect. When we determine your position, the one thing your brand stands for, we incorporate that message at the very core of your campaign as its guiding light.

The same principle applies in creating a buyer persona. Your position helps evaluate the right audience, providing direction across demographics, industries, or professions. As importantly, it helps identify personas based on their motivations and aspirations. Your differentiating factor separates you from the competition by resonating with those who feel your brand meets their expectations.

When we help clients find and focus on a differentiating idea (their position), we use a four C filter: Customer, Competitor, Company, and Context. The first — Customer — is our filter for relevance. The higher the meaning and relevance the differentiating idea has to your potential customer, the more desirable it will be to inspire action. We even coined the term Return on Relevance® to capture the essence of this important criterion in establishing our clients’ positions.

Building the persona

Once you have your compass, you can start evaluating all the factors that contribute to your target audience. Here are a few considerations when creating a buyer persona:

  • Demographics cover the basic characteristics in your potential audience, like gender, age, income, and education level.

  • Geographics is self-evident but important. If you’re targeting a U.S. consumer versus a European or Asian prospect, there would be obvious differences in consumption, lifestyle, etc., so don’t ignore this factor.

  • Firmographics relate to business data points such as industry, job title, business size, and type of business. These data points can reveal important considerations about your buyer’s motivations. For example, if you have a B2B product, you may want to target upper management positions like CMOs, CEOs, or the procurement department.

Finally, creating a buyer persona also entails psychographics. These details dig into the psychological motivations of the prospect including beliefs, interests, and lifestyle choices. This can include not just knowing what your audience likes, but also its frustrations. These may not be data points you can target, but evaluating potential disruptions to audience members’ needs and desires gives a more complete picture into their minds. This not only lets you convey how your brand can eliminate these frustrations, but also avoid playing into them.

Research and Results

Now that we’ve dissected what goes into it, how do we go about creating a buyer persona?

In short, it comes down to conducting careful research with information from your existing customer base, some general industry research, media auditing, and other analytics.

Between toggling data sets, analyzing relevant patterns, reading through customer feedback, and examining different data metrics, it’s a lot to interpret, let alone keep track of. Partnering with an experienced team of experts like Innis Maggiore can help.

As an integrated full-service agency and America’s #1 positioning ad agency, we have the tools, skill, and experience to create buyer personas that fit your brand. Our emphasis on collaboration, between our internal departments and with your own team, allows us to think creatively about your situation — from finding your position to nailing down your buyer personas.

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Contact us today to get started on creating a buyer persona that helps you focus on WHERE to market.

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