The Importance of Buyer Personas in Digital Marketing
Digital marketers are keen to repeat the same advice you always hear – your site needs better SEO, you need to rank higher to attract customers. This advice is certainly helpful, but it’s equally important to position your brand to deliver a message to its audience through actual content.
This is done through brand messaging, which refers to the way you approach your customers and demonstrate the value of your brand to them. It’s an incredibly important part of any digital marketing plan because it refers to the real value proposition your brand is making.
A successful SEO campaign will get people onto your site. If those people do not find products, services, or content that addresses their needs, they will simply leave and never come back. This is where persona-centric brand messaging can generate value.
Who Are Your Buyer Personas?
Perhaps the most important element of brand messaging is the development of buyer personas. Whether your business is retail-based or information-based, you serve a specific segment of the population – a specific type of person.
Until relatively recently, the focus was on “target demographics”. However, digital marketing gives you the ability to hyper-define and target potential customers.
To illustrate the difference, a demographic profile might specify age, gender, ethnic background and geolocation. That’s good, but a buyer persona offers a deeper and profound look at your consumers’ character by adding psychographic data.
If this target demographic were a buyer persona for a recreational vehicle, it might look like this:
Example Persona – RV Betty
Betty lives in a suburb of a city. Her husband is also retired. They have been talking about traveling in a RV upon
retirement for years – this is a long-time dream of theirs. Their adult children are self-sufficient and have been out of the house long enough that Betty doesn’t have to worry. She’s been retired long enough to be bored. While she doesn’t consider herself wealthy, she and her husband have substantial savings, and are prepared to enjoy their retirement.
Betty is worried about the logistics of traveling in a RV – how easy will it be to find utility hookups, where are the best places to stay if you have one, etc. She also wants something comfortable as she plans on spending a great deal of time in it. She has other retired friends so she wants additional sleeping space and she wants to make sure they have plenty of room for food and cooking. She wants as much ease as possible when traveling.
Betty likes to look at travel magazines and websites. She likes to plan destinations. She is on Facebook, which she checks once in a while to keep up with the children and friends. She set up a LinkedIn account 3 or 4 years ago, but hasn’t touched it since.
With more information about the Betty’s habits and preferences, we can better tailor brand messaging to respond to her specific concerns — and online searches — about towing, hookups, room to cook and overall comfort. With information about Betty’s digital media habits, we could consider a “remarketing” campaign and develop a social media strategy that gets noticed on Facebook instead of LinkedIn, where Betty rarely spends time.
It’s this kind of consumer-centric, and informed strategy that can help your brand stand apart instead of competing for Betty’s attention solely on pricing – a race to the bottom that nobody wins.
Buyer Personas Dictate Content Value
Brand messaging allows you to create content that addresses the needs of specific individuals according to their unique life stories. You’re also standing apart from competitors who are likely to be addressing different segments of the consumer population – and it makes your content much more valuable to the end-user.
Want to make the most of your brand online? Vortex Communications is a full-service web marketing agency that builds websites, crafts brand-friendly SEO campaigns and earns ROI for its clients. Get a head start on your digital marketing campaign today!
About the author: Tom Weinkle is a founder and partner of Vortex Communications, a graphic and website design firm who offers brand agency services, graphic and WordPress web design, build, troubleshooting and training services along with search optimization, social media and inbound marketing services. Based in Miami, Florida, Tom has over 25 years of experience in branding and visual communications for the healthcare, medical, law, accounting, software, financial services and banking industries.
Want to learn more? One of these resources may help.
Use Personas to Improve Sales
FREE. Understand how Buyer Personas can help to focus website content strategies and inbound marketing. This guide will take you through the components of a buyer personas and how to create a profile of your ideal customer for online marketing success. >
Build Personas Using a Template
FREE. This template will help guide your buyer persona interviews and research. Well-defined personas help to keep your communications strategies on track, and build alignment within your organization. The template is a helpful companion to the Persona Development Guide. >