What is a buyer persona?
Definition, examples, and how to a buyer persona step-by-step
A buyer persona is a detailed description of your target audience or ideal customer based on detailed analysis and insights. Buyer personas are important because they can help you develop tailored marketing strategies to meet the wants and needs of your customers.
A buyer persona is a fictitious representation of your customer segments typically grounded in first- or third-party customer insights. Buyer personas can help you imagine the wants, needs, behaviors, and values of your customers. By creating buyer personas and using them as the catalyst for your advertising campaigns, you put your customers first.
Buyer personas are also known as marketing personas, customer personas, or audience personas.
A buyer persona is an important part of your marketing strategy. By thinking about your audience personas, you can then start planning your customer journey map, which details the complete shopping timeline from beginning to end. A key component of the map is the audience personas, and attributes and interests that those personas represent, and then, from there, using those signals and insights to inform the potential for expansion of your business.
Creating buyer personas can also be useful for your brand’s storytelling, helping outline the path to purchase on the customer journey. As part of your inbound marketing strategy, buyer personas can be necessary to help determine, for example, where you need to raise brand awareness or scale prioritization. Buyer personas can also help develop more personalized, tailored advertising strategies to meet the specific demands of your customers.
There’s no one right answer to how many buyer personas a company should have, or even how many different types of buyer personas exist. Different brands and companies will have different answers to these questions. However, there are several components to consider including in your buyer persona profiles. Audience segmentation is the organization of various types of audiences into segments, to better reach them with relevant campaigns.
There are four types of audience segmentation:
- Demographic segmentation reaches audiences based on identifying characteristics such as age, gender, or education level.
- Geographic segmentation organizes audiences based on their localities (e.g., a US-based audience).
- Psychographic segmentation considers the needs or wants of customers.
- Behavioral segmentation focuses on shopping behaviors.
By considering these four components, you can create a robust definition of your buyer personas.
Additionally, you could categorize your buyer personas by industry, if your brand encompasses more than one. For example, a brand marketing both beauty and fashion products could create separate personas for each.
Finally, there are also negative buyer personas, which represent an audience with attributes such as being unlikely to engage with your brand or make purchases.
Here are three examples of specific buyer personas and their shopping habits, and how they could potentially differ from other personas.
Buyer personas can be used to better understand your audience, inform your ad campaigns, and personalize your brand messaging. Once you have insights into your various personas, you can craft campaigns that will organically appeal to different personas and help optimize your marketing efforts. The better you understand your audience, the better you can serve them information and advertising that could appeal to them. Ultimately, creating buyer personas can help your brand and products be more relevant and useful to your customers.