An essential part of any business is its customers; if they’re happy, they’ll keep coming back, which makes you happy! That’s why it’s so important to know who your target audience is and what it is they’re looking for. Your customers are people, not just transactions, so if you make an effort to get to know them, you can provide something that not only makes money but also is helpful and something your customers want or need. A great way to learn more about your target audience is by creating buyer personas. In this blog, we’ll talk about what a buyer persona is and why understanding your target audience matters.
A buyer persona is a representation of your ideal customer by a fictional character. For example, if you’re a clothing retailer and see lots of professional young women coming into your store, one of your buyer personas could be “Working Woman Wendy,” who would represent that customer type. Buyer personas are based on data and market research, as well as observation and consumer insight. According to Tony Zambito, founder of buyer personas for B2B Marketing, buyer personas ask:
You might be wondering if creating buyer personas will really teach you about your audience and help your business succeed. Well, the answer is yes! Check out why knowing your target audience is important–and how buyer personas can help.
Remember those buyer persona questions? Being able to answer those will help you determine exactly what your target audience needs. For example, “Working Woman Wendy” might be concerned about spending too much money, and she values modesty. You could infer, then, that Wendy needs affordable clothing that is both stylish and appropriate. If you can address these concerns for your customers rather than just focusing on making a profit, you’re already on your way to reaching them where they are and building relationships.
Wondering why your customers choose you over the competition? Analyzing their preferences will help you understand their decision making. For some, brand or business loyalty is king, while others prioritize a convenient location or reasonable prices. Low prices and sales might motivate Wendy to buy, especially if she is concerned with her spending. Knowing what makes your target audience tick will help you gear your marketing toward them so that they choose to keep doing business with you.
Different buyers have varying concerns, values, and motivations. 65-year-old “Retired Ralph,” another frequent shopper, would probably have different needs from 25-year-old Wendy. He might only buy a certain brand and get his news exclusively from the newspaper, while Wendy buys items on sale and checks social media for her news. Knowing the differences between your customers will help you segment them by demographics–age, gender, education, etc.–and deliver your message with the appropriate tone and channel.
Speaking of tone and delivery, familiarizing yourself with the audience will help you tailor your messages to promote your products and services where you know customers will see them. You might take out an ad in the paper that Ralph will read over his morning coffee, and you could tweet about an upcoming sale that Wendy will see just before leaving work. Doing this is much more effective than just assuming that your entire consumer base has social media and putting all your marketing there; you’d be missing all the “Retired Ralphs,” a large segment of your audience.
Once you know what motivates your consumers, you’ll be able to understand how you can provide what they want or need. Wendy, Ralph, and your other clients will appreciate that you prioritize them, and this will help you build relationships with them. Those relationships you form by having a vested interest in your customers and their thoughts, feelings, and desires will motivate them to stick around.
Here at Treefrog Marketing, we take care of strategy first. Before we do anything else, we research our potential client and their customers, what our client needs, and how we can best reach our audience. Buyer personas are an invaluable part of this strategy, since they help us put ourselves in a customer’s shoes and discover what drives them. With buyer personas in your arsenal, you’ll be able to reach your customers where they are and deliver just what they need!
Treefrog Marketing is an advertising agency focused on small business and located in Lafayette, Indiana. We specialize in strategic marketing and advertising, graphic design, web design, social media, SEO and more. For more information, please visit our website. You can also connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Instagram.