Little Leonard’s Encyclopedia #2: Personas

10mn   Beginner Level

Buyer personas, lead generation, inbound marketing… You think we’re talking down to you with our amphigious terms from the Anglo-Saxon lexicon? Don’t worry, it’s simpler than it sounds! Take advantage of our encyclopedia to understand the new digital marketing terms. Focus on personas!

The persona: a fictional individual… but not imaginary!

The persona is only the modern materialization of an age-old principle of knowing your customers well. However, faced with automated marketing techniques, it is now necessary to define them precisely before industrializing campaigns.

A very special individual
A persona is a semi-fictional individual representing the typical profile targeted by a marketing campaign. Fictional but not imaginary! Its characteristics, needs and behaviors are defined as precisely as possible from interviews and concrete data collected from your customers.

The persona usually takes the form of an identity card, with a photo, detailed information, characteristics and even standard phrases and questions. This persona gives marketers, sales people and other operational people a realistic representation of their target audience:

  • prospect: target persona,
  • customer: buyer persona,
  • influencer: influencer persona,
  • user: user persona.

For a better knowledge of your prospects

Using personas allows you to adopt the point of view of your prospects and customers to better understand their needs. You will then be able to know their expectations in terms of content, understand their decision cycle, identify their reasons for satisfaction… Valuable information to determine the commercial actions to implement!

Building personas is essential to define your discourse, refine the quality of your content and ensure the effectiveness of your campaigns. It takes time and energy (that’s why we’re here).

Segmentation & Targeting
Personas offer the guarantee of a finer segmentation and a more efficient targeting of your interlocutors, two essential prerequisites to launch your marketing campaigns.

How to build your personas?

Building a persona is a bit like painting a portrait: the closer you take to reality, the better the image you will get! It is therefore important to focus on all the characteristics of your customers or prospects.

These elements vary according to the sector and must be defined on a case by case basis. However, some of them are essential:

  • First name, last name, age: this will humanize the profile and make it more credible,
  • Position in the company,
  • Sector of activity,
  • Decision-making power or hierarchical level,
  • Challenges and objectives,
  • Difficulties (pain points), needs, problems and business issues related to your offer,
  • Level of maturity in relation to your offer, product or service,
  • Sources of information: media, trade shows, social networks…
  • Sources of business satisfaction.

Ready to design your own personas? Here are some templates to help you.

How to use your buyer personas

In the context of inbound marketing, personas are essential to identify the subjects that are likely to appeal to and be useful to your targets. The next step is to design targeted content, in line with the needs and issues of each persona.

The proposed content must also correspond to the stage each persona is at in the buying journey:

  • awareness phase: informative content helping the persona to become aware of their problem;
  • Consideration phase: practical content aimed at helping them and making them aware of the solutions you offer;
  • decision phase: content focused on your offer in order to guide them in their final choice.

“Know thyself” said Socrates. The wise marketer would add, “Your prospects, too! ” And he would be right: it is crucial to know the people you are addressing in order to know how to talk to them and what subjects to address. Building buyer personas is an essential step to personalize the customer journey, improve the customer experience and launch marketing automation campaigns. The more you know about your prospects, the better your chances of converting them into sales!

Image credits : Freepik

Posted By Sylvain

For the past 20 years, Sylvain has been choosing and assembling the best technologies for his key account clients, to help them create a successful end-to-end customer experience. Surely the Leonard of the team, he is a fan - and expert - of Marketo! He sits next to his clients, drives them forward and makes Marketing Automation projects succeed with his team.