It’s great to be open to a range of different customers but focusing on a specific buyer persona or target demographic can help improve the effectiveness of your marketing and brand positioning.
For example, if your establishment is family-oriented, your brand colors, marketing material, offers, and promotions might cater to families and the things that are important to them (like kid-friendly menus or family deals).
On the other hand, if your establishment is more upscale or adult-oriented, you might choose brand colors or messaging that panders to a higher income bracket with disposable income. This group could support increased pricing, exclusive offers, even after hours or professional events like mixers and happy hours.
Learn what a buyer persona is, how to create one and three ways to use it in this blog post.
What Is a Buyer Persona?
According to HubSpot, buyer persona (also known as a customer avatar or customer profile) is “a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.”
We would take this definition a step further and note that your buyer persona is just as much who your customer is– as who your customer is NOT.
Creating a Buyer Persona
By constructing a profile of an existing customer using data from within the company, small business owners have a clearer view of the buying patterns and habits of the potential client. They can then make projections about the long-term value of that person as a customer.
So where can you find the data you need to determine the habits of customers?
- Website Data – review your website data to determine how much traffic you’re getting, how often you’re getting it, which pages your customers are viewing, and how often they come back.
- Social Data – which social media channels are your customers connected to, who is engaging with your content and what types of content get the most engagement?
- Transactional Data – examine your previous transactions to find out which group spends the most and determine the product or service that generates the most revenue.
- CRM Data – CRM’s like HubSpot and Salesforce are great tools that help small businesses track contact history, correspondence, engagements, meetings, and the general relationship with the customer. Information within your CRM can help you identify gaps within your sales and marketing process so you can make more sales.
- Mail Data – mail platforms like MailChimp and Constant Contact can be used to establish, maintain, and grow your mailing list. Within these platforms, you can review your data to determine the open and response rates of your e-mail marketing campaigns.
- Point of Sale – if you operate a brick and mortar business or frequently interact with customers in person, it’s likely that you have a general idea about your buyer persona. Consider the requests, questions, concerns, and complements of your current customers. What observations have you or your sales staff made from customer interactions?
Tools like HubSpot’s Make My Persona tool can help
Three Ways to Use Your Buyer Persona
Now that you’ve learned what a buyer persona is and a few different ways to create one, here are three ways that you can apply it within your business.
- Tailor content to suit the customer – by sending out personalized messages and experiences, businesses engage customers and build a long-term relationship.
- Sell more to an existing customer – mining customer profiles to see their spending habits, likes, and interests enable marketers to make personalized offers.
- Reward loyal customers – identifying the right customers, and offering gifts and incentives tailored to their taste increases customer lifetime value.