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How to build your buyer persona

By HGB , Apr 18 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic has had us reviewing how we do things, who we are speaking to, and how to best engage. At the core of business delivery remains the important factor of knowing your customers and understanding your buyer persona.

Whenever we sit down with a new client, we ask them a lot of questions. We want to know about their business, their work ethos, the values they live by, what their current marketing activities are and ultimately, what they want us to help them achieve.

But it’s not just our clients we’re interested in. We also want to know about our clients’ customers to build their buyer persona. Who are they? What products do they buy? What type of shopping habits do they have? What services do they use?

See – we told you we ask a lot of questions!

To define our clients’ customers, we use a buyer persona model. By working through each of the categories, we’re able to get an overall picture of who are clients are wanting to market too and what needs must be met.

This is what we want to find out.

A bit of background

First of all, we look at the ‘who’.

  • How old are they?
  • Are they male or female?
  • Where do they live?
  • What type of education do they have?
  • What is their occupation?

We want to find out if they’re rugby mad or if they prefer cycling; do they like to travel overseas or relax on a Coromandel beach. Are they a dab hand at some DIY? Do they prefer fine dining or entertaining at home? We want to feel like we know them – and more often than not, we do!

What do you offer your customers?

Once we’ve found out who our clients’ customers are, we then want to know exactly what are clients offer them – or would like to offer them.

  1. Goals: What is your goal? If you had the perfect service to deliver to the perfect customer, what would that be? With the right marketing activity in place, you should be able to achieve this!
  2. Challenges: What challenges do your customers face? This is really important, because by understanding their challenges you can deliver a product or service that makes their life easier.  We’ve been working with a healthcare provider here at HGB. Many of their prospective customers have lost or are losing their independence due to age, health conditions, disability or illness. Our client has systems and products that can help these customers regain their independence and therefore want to work on effective marketing strategies to achieve this.
  3. What can we do?: So what’s your plan of attack? What can you do to help your customers overcome the challenges they face? How do you solve their problems and what systems and practices do you have – or don’t have – in place to do this?
  4. Quotes: To support this section, it’s good to get some quotes from your customers. Find out what they’re thinking and saying about the service you offer. This helps to keep it real and ensures we’re planning a marketing strategy that will get results.

Why wouldn’t they use your service?

Identifying your organisation’s strengths and weaknesses is important to improving your service, it forms part of your marketing strategy. That’s why we ask you why prospective customers wouldn’t come to you? Why wouldn’t they use your products and services? Is it because a competitor is providing a better service? Or is their service just as good as yours but their marketing is better? If it’s the latter, then you’ve come to the right place!

Your marketing message

Now we get to the nitty gritty – the how.

How are we going to describe your solution to your customers? We ask our clients to tell us what their elevator pitch is. What’s this? Well, we give them a scenario. If they found themselves in an elevator with a VIP and were asked what they do, could our client explain the service or product they offer within 30seconds, by the time the elevator reaches the third floor?

This helps to focus on exactly what it is you’re offering your customer. If you can explain your purpose clearly and succinctly, we’ll then do the rest of marketing it, getting it out there and getting results.

And that’s why we ask a lot of questions!

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