4 steps to know your target customer

A good marketing strategy is based on a good knowledge of the target customer. And this notably involves the creation of buyer personas.

What exactly is a buyer persona? What is his interest in inbound marketing strategy ? How to profile the different buyer personas? This is what we will discover in this article dedicated to buyer personas. In order to understand why knowing your target customer is important to increase your sales.

What is a buyer persona?

THE buyer persona, marketing persona or customer personais a symbolic representation of the ideal client. That is to say the typical profiles who will buy your products or services. Although this is a fictional portrait of buyers, it is not necessarily abstract.

buyer persona
buyer persona

Indeed, a buyer persona must be a realistic prospect with a personality. This means by definition that it must possess the characteristics of a real person.

Like demographic particularities, particular social and psychological characteristics… The buyer persona is used to personify the ideal target by giving them a specific personality..

This will make it easier for teams to deploy a relevant and effective content strategy. Indeed, the marketing strategy will not be the same depending on the target prospects. For example a member of Generation Z or baby boomers.

This essential step is often neglected by companies because it is considered time-consuming. It is true that this strategic deployment requires time. It often takes carry out market research or analyze the profiles of your subscribers on social networks.

But it’s worth taking the time to create the buyer persona. Indeed, knowing the target customers is a real asset in theinbound marketing.

The buyer persona, right in the inbound marketing strategy

Before looking at the place of buyer personas in L’inbound marketinglet’s go back to what inbound marketing is.

The arrival of inbound marketing has completely revolutionized the lead acquisition strategy which was used in marketing. Unlike previous methods, in inbound marketing, customers are allowed to come to a company.

This involves, among other things, the lead scoringTHE lead nurturingbut also via a targeted content strategy. When this content is centered on social networks, it is called social-selling.

Inbound marketing goes through 4 stages

  • Attract someone to a company’s website
  • Convert this visitor into a lead
  • Turn this lead into a customer
  • Retain the customer so that he becomes an ambassador of your brand

A effective content strategy is therefore at the center of this marketing strategy. However, to be able to implement this targeted content strategy, you need to know the target. This is where the buyer persona comes into play.

Indeed, inbound marketing is not just about attract someone to your site. It’s necessary capture the attention of the person who matches your offer. That is to say, the person who will be most able tobuy your product/service. Clearly, this is the buyer persona or marketing persona.

A good inbound marketing strategy is therefore inseparable from the creation of buyer personas.

What is the point of defining your buyer persona?

If the creating a buyer persona is so important, is that it is a crucial element of any marketing strategy. It presents 2 major issues:

  • It helps to humanize buyers
  • It helps to optimize the marketing campaign

Indeed, in taking the time to create a detailed profile of your customer personayou make it “concrete” target customer. And today, personalization is key to any marketing plan. Against competition, customers want to feel like the business understands them and speaks specifically to them.

This is the challenge of this buyer persona. He is much more than a fictional character, he is a real lever of communication, which “speaks” to all sectors of a company.

Let’s take a concrete case with an example buyer persona: Anne Lemaire, 45 years old, very connected. She is looking for a solution to better manage the HR sector of her company. This profile is clear for everyone, and gives indications on the type of offers which could interest him.

Another issue of the customer persona: it allows you to better think about the campaign in order to optimize it as much as possible. Indeed, it allows to better know the target customers. And therefore to better understand which levers (arguments) will or will not be effective according to their profile.

In summary, the buyer persona provides a clear view of target customers across an entire company.

Is the buyer persona different if it is B2B or B2C?

Obviously the purchasing process differs depending on whether you are in B2B or B2C. THE B2B is usually a collective decisionit is a business-to-business purchase. Which is not the case in B2C where generally the purchase decision is individual (from the company to the private client).

In fact, the customer persona is not the same depending on the scenario. When creating the B2B marketing personasit is necessary to take into account various criteria, besides the industry. As in particular the role and level of decision of the person.

Indeed, a CEO or marketing manager will not have the same brakes, nor the same criteria. Must therefore personalize the marketing persona in order to address each type of profile to better convince.

The steps to follow to create a buyer persona

create a buyer persona
create a buyer persona

1). Define the information to be collected

Before moving on to the actual deployment of the customer persona, a framework must be defined. In particular the type of information you wish to collect. For example :

  • Demographics : age group, gender, school level, etc.
  • Psychographic data : beliefs and values ​​but also its challenges and issues.
  • Behavioral data : his way of buying, the way he gets information, areas of interest, etc.

This step is important to have buyer personas that are as relevant as possible.

2). Collect information

Once the information has been defined, it still needs to be collected. To do this, there are several methods.

  • If you already have existing customers: send them a satisfaction survey, either after a purchase or to a customer who has been inactive for a while. Consult the statistics of your social networks. Finally, use tools like Google Analytics. It is a very interesting analysis tool to know the profile of your public.
  • If you do not yet have any existing customers: in this case, identify your competitors’ customers. You can also seek the help of your teams to help define target profiles. Otherwise ask relatives who are close to your ideal prospects to answer a questionnaire.

Whether you are just getting started, or are already established, this step is important in order to gather as much information as possible.

3). Analyze the information collected

Information is only useful if it is analyzed. Sort through the various information collected in your prospecting file to identify trends. Be sure to keep only the information that will help you create your buyer personas.

To do this you must define the features that are most important to you. There is no question here of being exhaustive. But rather ofhave precise information about your profiles. Quality is more valuable than quantity.

4). Create the buyer persona

Now is the time to create your marketing persona. To start, establish a standard profile with the characteristics of the first stage (demographic, psychographic, behavioral).

You can create an example of personas for each marketing target. For example, a male profile and a female profile.

To make the marketing persona more “real”, you can assign it a surname, first name and profession (executive employee, student, etc.). And put an avatar or a photo to personify it even more.

FAQ – Buyer persona

When to create a buyer persona?

Since these are buyer personas that will stem from the content strategy in place, they need to be created early.
Indeed, the creation of target profiles is done at the start of the marketing campaign process. That is, at the time of strategic framework of the Marketing strategy.
The earlier the profiles are identified, the easier it will be to define the marketing plan to be put in place.

Difference between a buyer persona and a user persona?

THE buyer persona is used during the pre-sales phase. He is used to know how to attract a prospect according to his profile, the buyer is a potential buyer.
This is not the case with a user persona. This one symbolizes a customer who has already purchased a product/serviceit is a user.
A user persona is rather used in UX design strategy. To help implement a user strategy that meets user needs and expectations.

With which tools to create buyer personas?

As you browse the Internet, you will realize that there are many solutions that can help you create a buyer persona. Tools can allow you to profile your target customers for a merchant website as well as for a social selling strategy.
tools like Twitter analytics Or Instagram Insights are important assets to know your prospects and targets on social networks.