Fine-Tuning your Customer Personas

Well hello, and welcome to Episode 56 of Aftershock Weekly. This week, I’m going to talk about Fine-Tuning your Customer Personas. So, as a recap, we talked about Customer Personas a little while back, and we talked about who they were. So today what we want to do is talk about fine-tuning them so that you can get more out of those Customer Personas so you can define your market for who your business is for more clearly and you can use that information for your sales and your support team to make sure that they are providing better value and service for those customers.

So what is a customer persona? It’s a fictional representation of a customer. So for example, let’s say we had Suzy Smith, and Suzy Smith was thirty-four years old, she worked for Intel as an engineer, she was single with no kids, and she lived in Chandler, Arizona. Well that is a very specific Customer Persona, cause then we can say Suzy likes to hike, Suzy likes to travel, and we’ve identified that person. Now we say, how would we market to her and speak to a language that would be enticing to her to try our product or service?

So the first point of this is, Don’t Ignore Your Data. When you’re putting together your Customer Persona, look in your CRM. You already have a ton of customers, so now you can look at your customers and say what commonalities do they have? Look at your Google Analytics. You can go in Google Analytics and look at Demographic information about age, and male/female, you can see what areas that they’re coming to your site, you can see if they’re converting. Pull in the Analytics and see if you can get some information there. Social Media: well, use Facebook Analytics. You’ve maybe got a lot of Facebook people that have liked your pages, or you’ve run Facebook advertising. You can pull that data out and look and see what commonalities you can pull to build a persona.

Second, Get to the Why. Get to why somebody would use your product or service, and here’s how you can do that. One, you can look at the data that we just talked about and see what is it that we’re solving for somebody based on our current clients, based on our analytics, and you can also conduct interviews. Conduct interviews with your sales people, your Customer Service support. And what you’d be asking them is, what was a good sales call you went on, and why did they say yes. What was the pain point you were solving? Why did they say no, why did they leave us? That could be a question for your Customer Service. What was their problem that they had to move to a different vendor? And if you can get honest information, then you can say, okay, great. That’s something we can solve or not solve, and if it’s something you cannot solve that means that that is probably not a Customer Persona that you want to go after. That could be a Negative Customer Persona that you could go ahead and add. Or if it is something you can solve, you can say oh great. How can we shore that up in our Customer Service process? On the sales side, you can look at great, how can we provide more material, better marketing and advertising to target that particular audience so that you can go ahead and speak directly to what their needs are. So you’re looking for Demographics, you’re looking for things about your customer and what they do in their daily life. What kinds of hobbies do they have? What kind of TV do they watch, if you can get that information? What area do they live in? All of this information about your customers helps you boil down and create Customer Personas, and I would recommend doing at least three different Customer Personas so you can put together a marketing plan, a sales plan towards each one of those. Because they’ll all be a little bit different, even though the end result is that they’re using your product or service.

Number three: Distill the Information. Now that you’ve gathered all this data, you’ve looked at Analytics, you’ve questioned your Sales Team, you’ve gotten feedback from your Customer Support about who your audience is and you know all this about your customer, you can start boiling it down and say okay, I’m going to build my Customer Personas and now I’m going to use this to teach my sales people on how they go about attracting new business for this type of client. I can teach my Customer Support Team to use that information to say okay, how can we support and keep these clients longer for what their needs are and the feedback that we have. And then you can also identify Negative Personas, like I mentioned. You can say, this particular client typically will sign up and leave, and you have identified who that person is, where maybe it’s a certain age range that’s not good for you, maybe it’s a certain area because it’s too far if you own a service that they have to travel to. But you can identify what those personas are and say that’s not a good client. We don’t want to put our marketing and advertising efforts towards attracting more of those. So, Negative Personas can be important as well.

So to wrap up, on the three points, Don’t Ignore your Data, Get to the Why, and Distill the Information. So I hope that helps you put together more dialed-in Customer Personas so you can have a better marketing and sales plan. So with that, we’ll see you next week.