A Complete Guide To Creating A Buyer Persona (With Example)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 25 October 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Buyer or audience personas are a helpful tool for marketers to target their ideal customers. They can help you direct your marketing efforts towards the right people and avoid wasting time and money on misguided advertisements and content. If you work in marketing and are curious to know more about the likes, wants and dislikes of a target audience, learning how to create a buyer persona can be beneficial. In this article, we discuss buyer or audience personas, list their benefits, share steps for creating a persona and provide a template and an example for reference.

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What Is A Buyer Persona?

A buyer persona is a thorough depiction of a member of the target audience. This is a descriptive account of a fictitious character or persona based on market research for the intended or existing customer. To better visualise the customer and comprehend their goals, pain areas and purchasing patterns, marketing personas usually contain a fictional name, photograph, demographic information, interests and behavioural qualities. It provides a comprehensive look at a person's traits, values, objectives, interests and hobbies. Because different customers purchase products for various reasons, it may be necessary to establish multiple audience personas.

Marketers use market research to acquire data and design an accurate picture of the ideal customer. You can interview current, former and prospective customers, consult your sales team about typical customers, look at statistics to identify purchasing trends, use social media to find out what topics customers are discussing and research competitors to find out about their clientele. Marketing personas influence the calibre and efficacy of marketing content and enable you to talk directly to an ideal prospect. This helps maintain consistency across product development, brand voice and social media platforms.

Related: What Is Consumer Behaviour? (With Types And Significance)

Benefits Of Creating Customer Personas

Creating a persona helps you understand the target audience for a product, service or company and generate strong content to engage with them. Here are some advantages of developing a persona:

  • Objectivity: When thinking subjectively, marketers, salespeople or business owners may mistakenly believe that they are the target market when they are only one type of consumer. Developing multiple personas allows them to shift their perspective, empathise with all customers and create more diverse messages.

  • Focus: Personas ensure that everyone on the sales and marketing teams has common knowledge of the prospective target and develops content that is most likely to speak to them. You may waste time and miss opportunities if you cannot narrow the target of your marketing message.

  • Customer knowledge: Companies can better understand their customers by developing detailed descriptions and personas, which help them see things from their perspective. This understanding of a customer's viewpoint enables you to create relevant, personalised content that speaks to that individual.

  • Need fulfilment: The only way to properly understand what the consumer wants and needs is to ask questions that reveal the gaps a product or service can fill. You may create more successful marketing strategies after you know what challenges customers need to resolve.

  • Marketing strategies: After developing personas, you can modify your marketing tactics and create organic posts and social advertisements to appeal to them. Identifying these differences can help you save money, time and effort because certain consumers may find particular marketing tactics and commercials appealing.

  • Trust: Creating social strategies centred on assisting the personas in achieving their objectives might help you connect with the real customers they represent. These foster trust and brand loyalty, which ultimately simplifies the sales process.

  • Capture and retain: Customer personas represent the kind of client that generates the most money for a business over the longest period with the least amount of opposition. It is easy to convert these high-quality leads into paying customers and retain them over time.

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How To Develop A Buyer Persona

Consider the following steps to create an accurate customer persona:

1. Conduct in-depth audience research

The first stage in generating marketing personas is doing market research and gathering information from the actual customer base through surveys and interviews. Gather information on the audience's demographics, business history, stage of life, interests, values, goals, influences, sources, spending power and patterns, motivators, challenges and factors influencing buying decisions by combining data from your social media analytics, customer database and other online analytics. To find out where the audience is already spending time online, be aware of the social media platforms they use. It is also advisable to segment personas and decide how many personas to have.

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2. Identify customer objectives and challenges

Learn about the objectives and motivating factors for an audience. Recognise the issues, challenges, and pain areas that they are striving to overcome. Your sales team and customer service department are excellent resources for answering these queries, but an important alternative is to participate in social listening and sentiment research. You may get a real-time view of what people are saying about the company online by setting up search streams to track mentions of the brand, goods and rivals.

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3. Recognise how the company can assist

Ask yourself how the company can assist after considering the key purchasing obstacles the audience faces and where they are in the buying process. Thinking about how you can help entails looking past the features and examining the benefits of the good or service. A benefit is how the product or service improves or makes a customer's life easier, as opposed to what the product is or does. Clients purchase goods because of their benefits, not their features.

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4. Make customer personas

Gather your research and begin looking for commonalities. These traits form the core of your distinctive client personas as you put them together. Assign a name, a job title, and other identifying details to your audience persona. Make sure the persona resembles a real person.

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Customer Persona Template

You may select the details you include in an audience persona and the needs of your marketing campaign. Here is a sample marketing persona template containing all the factors you may require for building a persona for a business-to-customer brand:

[Target audience/customer persona name]
[Image of persona]
[Optional philosophy quote]
Background: job title(s), life stage, career path, family
Demographics: gender, age, location, average income, language
Interests: hobbies, favourite brands and other preferences
Favourite social networks: channels where the target audience is most active
Least favourite social networks: channels where the target audience is least active
Buying behaviour: How does social media fit into the buying journey? Is the target customer using it for research, looking at business or product reviews or direct shopping?
Spending behaviour: How much money can the audience spend? How do they approach purchasing decisions in the product or price category?
Challenges: customers' pain points
Goals: What do they want to achieve by buying something?
How the business, product or service can help: How does the business/product/service help resolve customer issues and achieve their goals?
Purchasing barrier: What stops them from buying?
Messaging: how to position the business/product/service to this persona on social media
Preferred content type: What are the kinds of content the audience is most likely to engage with—videos, stories, GIFs, products, demos?
Voice and tone: What is the appropriate way to speak to the audience so they can relate and engage?

Related: The Difference Between Consumer Vs Customer (With FAQ)

Customer Persona Example

Here is an example of an audience persona a fashion brand may create for one of their ideal customers:

Fashion-forward Fatima 'I like my money right where I can see it—hanging in my wardrobe.'
Background: TV host and producer, middle-aged, television and film industry enthusiast, married
Demographics: female, 39, lives in Greater Noida, earns ₹70,000 per month, speaks Hindi and English
Interests: music, theatre and fashion shows, likes other competitor couture brands
Favourite social networks: Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest
Least favourite social networks: Snapchat, Tik Tok
Buying behaviour: uses social media for research and curating fashion ideas
Spending behaviour: spends at least ₹5,000 on clothes every month, only buys products she trusts and has been considering for a while, does not make impulsive decisions
Challenges: long wait times and high competition to purchase from high fashion brands
Goals: wants to increase fashion collection and stay updated on the latest trends
How the business, product or service can help: Company blog can provide trend updates and recommendations on what to buy and has the option of pre-bookings to help the customer avoid competition and long waits.
Purchasing barrier: unrecognised brand name or low product value
Messaging: personalised advertisements from influencers they follow and content providing relevant couture trend information
Preferred content type: videos, pictures, stories, blogs and newsletters
Voice and tone: sophisticated, knowledgeable and humorous

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are associated with Indeed.

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