It’s no secret that failing to understand your audience can impact massively on your bottom line; striking an off-note with a campaign can at best leave potential clients unenthused or cringing, and at worst alienate your target market.
We all know that creating personas is vital to content marketing, but how do you go about completing this process to create useful and insightful profiles? Our free ebook download details four simple steps to follow when researching and building your personas.
Ultimately, creating and executing a marketing strategy on the basis of incorrect personas will lead to an incorrect campaign.
Beth Kelleher, Data Insights Lead at Axonn says: “The biggest mistake you can make with personas is assuming.”
She explains: “It can be frustrating when brands just create their personas without any research, the same way that some people research their keywords based on how they would like to describe themselves rather than how their audience actually communicate.
“Without wanting to sound too cliche (sometimes it’s unavoidable in marketing), you are in conversation with your customers, you’re not just talking at them. Just because you think you know who your audience are, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t at least find the evidence to back these theories up.”
But it’s not just about getting it completely wrong. Some brands will do minimal research and base their personas off the lacklustre data they gather. While this is arguably better than going in entirely blind, they’re unlikely to get the full picture without more detailed research. Thin personas containing fewer details will lead to a less successful campaign than one built on the foundations of well-researched and thought out personas.
With strong personas behind you, you have the starting point for tactics such as advertising targeting, understanding of keyword targeting and accurate measurement of success.
Given that persona profiling is an ever-evolving technique requiring the latest tools and the knowledge of how to utilise these, it’s no surprise that brands often struggle to do it well, commonly turning to online freebies for help.
A quick Google search will reveal a number of persona profile templates online - but it’s important to remember that these will help you only with the presentation of your conclusions, rather than the methods involved.
Catherine Cooke, head of social engagement at Axonn, explains: “It would be fine to use an online template if you already knew everything about your customers. The point of our work at Axonn is to combine what the client knows with new research. Presentation of a persona is less important than actually finding out the information you need.”
Don’t be fooled by pretty personas - make sure yours are actionable, insightful and detailed with our four simple steps.