How to Create a Killer Buyer Persona in 5 Steps
If I gave you a list of ten people from completely different walks of life and asked you to pick out the one that’s willing to buy your product, could you do it?
If you can, congratulations, you’ll win nothing and this game show is a pointless endeavor. But if you can’t, it sounds like you need a better buyer persona.
Buyer personas are descriptions of imaginary people that act as the ideal buyer of your company’s products. Some have names, some have personalities, some play golf on the weekends, but no matter what description they have, they’re crucial to helping you sell to your clients.
So if you need some guidance to make your buyer persona stellar, here are five steps that will help you out.
1. Survey clients you’ve had in the past
Nobody can better represent your client base than your previous clients. So, if you’re looking to find what makes them tick, go ahead and ask them.
Send out emails to clients you’ve had in the past, asking if you can pay them for a short survey. This is where you need to decide what information you need out of them. You should be looking for pain points, why they decided to sign on with you, what might have given them uncertainty during the sale, and other crucial questions that you can make use of in the future.
None of your previous clients can give you the exact details you’re looking for. But, once you sift through all their answers and find any similarities, you’ll be left with a document full of information that matches your average client.
Now that you know what your average client has to say, let’s learn a little bit more about them.
2. Learn your most common buyer’s demographic
It can seem intimidating to try and fully relate to your clients, but just remember, your buyer is unique…
…just like everyone else. Everyone you’re looking to sell to has something in common with one another. It doesn’t matter if they’re a Fortune 500 CEO or a circus clown, they both have big shoes to fill.
Make notes about how your most common buyers are. Do they work in similar industries? What job titles or roles do they have in their company? How old are they? The more you dive into these questions, the more you’ll learn about how to market to your average buyer. But be careful, if you research them too thoroughly, you’ll have a restraining order on your desk in no time.
Just stick to surface-level questions that give you all the info you need to make the right assumptions. Although not everything you do has to be based on blind guesses and demographics.
3. Identify your current client’s pain points
While learning about your most common buyer is important, your current clients should be your top priority, so kill two birds with one stone. Learn what sorts of troubles your current clients are going through, and why they might be willing to sign on with your company.
There are countless reasons that your clients could have for buying your product, so it’s time to do some research if you haven’t already. See if they’ve posted anything on social media about what pain points they have on a daily basis. Even a simple “Ugh, there’s not enough days in the week,” can give you a treasure trove’s worth of insights into your buyer’s pain points.
You could also ask them what types of software and services their company already has in their arsenal. That way, you can find what your buyers normally have access to, and how you can find a solution to any gaps they might have in their productivity.
Now that you have the data and statistics down, it’s time to make them feel like more than just a robot with sticky notes taped onto their circuits.
4. Create a personality for them
You know what they say about assuming right? Well, in most cases it’s a bad idea, but in this case, this is a fake person anyways, so it’s not like they’re going to care.
If you’re trying to create a persona that will help you get inside your buyer’s head, they shouldn’t have a two-dimensional personality. I’m not trying to say that you should craft some elaborate backstory where their parents mysteriously disappeared, but if you think it’ll help, who am I to judge?
Give your buyer persona ideals and values when it comes to buying from a company. Do they prefer efficiency over customer service? Are they tired of big promises with little follow-up? Do they drink 2% or 1% milk? These simple details make all the difference when you’re creating the ideal buyer persona for your product. Even naming them helps make the persona feel relevant.
But you need to know how to organize these bits of information to make use of your efforts.
5. Make your persona easy to read
You’ve researched every detail about your buyer’s behavior and pain points, but you’re not done yet. How can you and your teammates make use of this crucial buyer info if you’re sifting through a document folder with walls of text and numbers?
Organize your buyer information in a way that’s helpful for anyone trying to read it. Don’t just jot down “this buyer has no patience and doesn’t want to deal with formalities.” Instead, write something along the lines of “CPA Cedric needs someone that can shoot straight, and give him the essential details, without wasting his time.”
Put in the effort to make your buyer persona feel like an individual. You’ll make it easier to understand your buyer’s point of view and relate to their troubles.
Your buyer persona should feel like a real person.
It can seem like a waste to give a name to a fake person that exists only to help sell products, but that extra effort makes all the difference. When you can imagine every detail and pain point that your average buyer has, you’ll find that it’s much easier to solve their problems and drive home a sale.