If you want to create better, more successful campaigns, the first step is to make sure you understand the people you are marketing to. Customer personas are key to this, ensuring that for every campaign and every ad that you create, you have a specific audience in mind. Well built personas will help to inform everything about a campaign, from its placements to the language and imagery if uses, to the types of offer it presents. In this article, I show how answering five questions will let you build customer personas that will boost your campaigns.

1. Who are your customers?

You almost certainly have a good idea of the different types of customers that access your products or services. The first step in creating customer personas is to sort those customers into a handful of broad categories, based on the habits of those customers.

The types of category will be different for every business, but consider separating groups based on things such as the products or services they most often use, the reasons that they buy those products, their level of familiarity or understanding of the products and services they use, the amount they are willing to spend with you, or whether they are a business-to-business or business-to-customer client.

For example, two client groups for a stationary store could include:

Artists, looking for high quality paper and art supplies, willing to spend to get the quality they are looking for, buying goods on an irregular basis as they need them.

Small business owners, looking for printer paper and office supplies, wanting to get the best price they can, and placing regular monthly orders.

These broad groups help to give you an idea of the selling points and offers that will be of the most interest to your customer base.

 2. What is their background?

Once you have identified your main customer groups, you can further identify those customers by focussing on the demographics of those groups. Look to add information such as age, their location, their income level and level of education.

This information will help to focus your understanding of the customer group; knowing where the customer is coming from will help you to communicate to them in a way that is relevant and meaningful to them.

3. What do they want?

At this stage, you can start to build a deeper understanding of the behaviour of each customer group and what motivates their decisions. Consider the reasons why your customer uses your products, what concerns or problems they might have, the barriers to their purchases and the ways in which your product or service might help them.

Also take the opportunity to consider your customer journey. Does a customer group carry out intensive research before they make a purchasing decision, or do they buy on impulse? Do they respond well to upselling, or do they want a simple, straightforward transaction?

4. Where do they find you?

Consider where each customer group is likely to find out about your business. Think about where and how they search for information, how they spend their leisure time, and what social media they use. Each of these offers potential avenues for a campaign to reach the customer.

Think also about the type of language that a customer uses when they search for information, and make sure that you are using the same language in your campaigns and on your website. Not only will this make it easier for the customer to find you, it will also make sure that the campaigns you create speak meaningfully to you customers.

5. Who isn’t a customer?

While this process will have helped to identify the customer groups you want to appeal to, it is also worth identifying the customer groups you wish to avoid. If you are able to identify the groups that are unlikely to use your business and the reasons they would be unsuitable, you can build your campaigns to focus on your highest converting customers, saving you time, money and effort. The right customer personas can help make sure your campaigns hit their target. John Rowbottom Design and Marketing can help you build personas, campaigns and creative that drive business success. To find out more, visit jrdm.com.au today.

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