So I have a question for you… who is your ideal customer?
Do you know them by name, by what they do, their hopes and dreams? Or just by their general demographics?
If you’re in the wedding industry: what is your idea bride’s age? Her job? What values does she hold closest? What does she most want for her wedding?
If you’re in the pregnancy industry: how is your ideal customer feeling about their impending motherhood? What are they most excited about? Do they have any fears?
You probably already have a good idea of who your target market is – maybe female, 28, located in your city and getting married or having a baby – but customer personas take this a huge step further by identifying exactly who your ideal customer is and helps you relate to them as real people with interests, needs and personalities.
The difference between target markets and customer personas
We’ve already established you know your target market are recently engaged, or recently pregnant, but do you know what their specific needs and interests are? Are they a hands on or hands off bride? Are they a perfectionist or more focussed on the overall feel of their wedding? Are they terrified of birth or looking forward to it? What is their typical background? You get the idea…
If you’re creating your marketing around a general target market, like a 28 year old female who lives in Brisbane, as opposed to a clearly defined customer persona, your content is likely to be much less engaging. Once you have a persona to base your marketing on it helps you be vulnerable, open up, and have empathy to the sorts of problems you can help them solve. Once you’re really speaking to that persona, anyone who falls into that market will feel that you’re relating to them. You will be equipped to better create content to target your audience’s interests and concerns and in turn make them far more engaged.
How customer personas drive your marketing
For you to fully understand what makes your customers tick, it’s critical to develop detailed personas for your business.
Skip this step and you won’t have focus for your marketing.
Once you have your customer personas they will drive everything you do – from content creation, brand voice, sales follow ups and anything else that relates to gaining and keeping new clients or customers.
Having a customer personas will help you:
- focus your marketing efforts
- determine what kind of content you need
- set the tone, style, and delivery strategies for your content
- target the topics you should be writing about
- understand where buyers get their information and how they want to consume it
Once you have your persona you should always ask yourself: “Is this what my customer persona wants?”
What a customer persona looks like
Here’s an example of one of our customer personas. As we are in the process of creating an online course about marketing for wedding and pregnancy industries, this is what we were keeping in mind as we created this persona.
You can use our example below to create your own personas using our Canva template for free here.
Creating your customer personas
Depending on your business, you could have as few as one or two personas, or as many as 10. But if you’re new to personas, start small! You can always develop more personas later if needed. For each persona you want to know who the person is, what they value, their mindset and how best to speak to them.
So where do you get all the information you need to create a persona?
Imagine you’re having a coffee date with your ideal customer. Imagine what they look like, what they’re wearing and then go through the below.
- Location: do they live inner city, the suburbs, or rurally? Do they own or rent?
- Salary/Household income
- Decision making: are they the primary decision maker?
- Appearance: what do they look like? It helps to put a face to the person, finding a picture online, or of someone you know helps.
- Spirituality/Religion: Are they spiritual or religious? What are their values (Conservative? Liberal? etc)
- What do they value more? Things or experiences?
- What do they value more? Consumerism or environmentalism?
- What do they value more? Focusing on themselves or others?
What are their 3 top hopes, dreams or goals? What is most important to them?
- If they’re a bride, what are the 3 biggest wishes they have for their day? Do they want a laid back wedding? Do they want to be completely involved in all decisions?
- If they’re a Mum to be and your service is focussed on birth, what are 3 things they most want for their birth?
- If they’re a Mum to be and your service is focussed on newborns what 3 things do they most want for motherhood?
Think about how you help fulfill these goals. What outcomes would they experience after using your product or service?
Fears & challenges
Name 3 things that keep them awake at night.
- Are there any common objections to using your product or service?
- If they’re a bride are they worried about supplier prices or happy to pay a premium? Are they worried their big day will be perfect or are they happy to go with the flow?
- If they’re a Mum to be, what are they most worried about? Are they scared of birth, or those first days as a mother? Are they worried how their partner will be?
Think about how you help solve these challenges. What outcomes would they experience after using your product or service?
- Information sources: Where do they look for information? What do they use to do their research?
For our example, Rachel attends generic marketing professional development days (but finds them to broad), talks to other celebrants and wedding professionals, and uses Google to find blogs relevant to the questions she has around marketing.
- Content platforms: What social media or websites are they using?
- Real quotes: From having dealt with your current customers do you have any real quotes from them that you should keep in mind?
Taking all of the above – what would your elevator pitch be to this persona? Your pitch should cover their challenges and tell them how you’ll solve them.
Every time you’re planning marketing activity – whether it’s a blog post, post to social media, branding decision or advertising – think to yourself:
“Is this what my customer persona wants?”
Print out and stick your personas up at your desk and look at them while you think about this. Think of them by name; if I’m creating a blog post with celebrants in mind I’ll think ‘will this help Rachel with her problem?’ If the answer is no, I rethink what I’m about to do, and tweak it to be speaking to her wants and needs.
Creating your personas helps you, and it helps your potential customers. Your personas will help you relate to your ideal customers and target their interests and concerns. You’ll be solving their challenges, helping them their fears, and taking them one step closer to their goals through every piece of marketing. You’ll be talking one-on-one instead of trying to shout out to a crowd. The result will be a far more engaged audience that really connects with your business.
So what are you waiting for? Get started on your personas today – we’d love to hear how you go!