Understanding customers can be the most difficult job for any business owner. Whether small or large, all businesses must dedicate time, effort and money to figuring out what drives their customers to engage and make purchases.
To help you navigate this often tedious process, try building buyer personas. Buyer personas are carefully planned and researched models of your existing customer base. Large companies can afford to spend millions of marketing dollars researching the attributes of their customer, but most businesses need to learn to do that themselves, which is why we’re offering this nine step guide to building buyer personas for your business.
As obvious as it sounds, you need to know whether your products appeal more to men or women. Are more women buying your product than men? Are they buying it for themselves, or for their spouses? Even if your product doesn’t naturally assign itself to a particular gender, you may find buying trends that are gender specific, helping your figure out a better way to market your product or service.
Age is a relatively easy statistic to collect, and it’s also one of the most useful pieces of data. With age you can assume what types of values your audience identifies with, what channels they’ll be using to communicate, as well as average income and spending trends. If your product is targeted at teenagers, you’ll want to be sure you’re using digital and mobile advertising tools to reach them. If you’re selling something like hearing aids, and you know the people buying those hearing aids are elderly, advertising through the newspaper or television may be more effective for you.
Discovering a common profession among your customers is valuable. If you were a hardware store and the majority of your customers were construction workers, you would want to market to them differently than an average person buying tools for a weekend project. Professional users are looking for the best tools, while the laymen is most likely looking for the cheapest deal.
Understanding your target audience’s financial situation can be extremely helpful. This does not mean you need to know what your target buyer has in their checking account, but rather how much they are willing to spend. This statistic can help you drive pricing and advertising.
Your product is the core of your marketing, so it is crucial that you understand what your customers use your product for so you can market the purpose to them. Some products have a clearly defined purpose, like shampoo, but if you sell fabric that could have multiple applications, you need to find out what your customer does with that product after they make the purchase.
Understanding the education level of your ideal buyers will drive the way you market your product to them. People with more education process information differently. For instance, if you’re selling a technical software to customers with a high level of education, utilizing statistics and even jargon in your marketing message may be a good idea. If you customers tend to be less educated reviews and testimonials may work better than data in persuading them to buy.
You cannot know your buyer persona too well. Knowing their hobbies, interests, and how they spend their free time can help you integrate your product into their life.
To understand this attribute you need to know what influences your buyers to make a purchase. Is it the price, features, resell value? The reason your customers pay for your products is essential to create effective marketing.
One last helpful bit of information is what other purchases your target customer makes. This lets you know what else they are looking for, and gives you an opportunity to fill or supplement that need.
Collecting the right kind of customer data can drastically improve your marketing and your products. If you could use help with marketing, whether it’s print, social media, digital or strategy, Divvy by Alexander’s can help. Let us know.