Four Essential Questions to Improve Customer Quality

You invested money, time and effort into creating what you thought was an irresistible offer. You mapped out a well-planned promotion. You started marketing it but the response was flat.

Well, you thought, I could reinvent and create a new strategy – so out went another investment of money, time and effort. Still, not many more bites. There are people who are interested and asking about your product. But, no one’s buying. You start asking yourself: where did I go wrong?

I am going to ask you a question.

Did you ever run your offer past your imaginary friends?

No, I am not crazy but I do talk to my imaginary friends. Well actually, they are my imaginary buyers and their names are Steve and Catherine.

What I am talking about are Growth HQ’s buyer personas.

customer persona

Meet one of Growth HQ’s buyer personas – Steve

When marketing efforts fail to make a splash, it means that you have not checked in with your buyer persona. One fundamental concept that you must keep in mind, when developing new products and processes is an in-depth understanding of your buyer persona.

What is a Buyer Persona?

What do you say when asked who your ideal customer is? You may answer: a mother or a CEO of a multi-million dollar company or a teenager who is still getting an allowance from his parents. These descriptions are part of what makes up a persona but they are not enough. Buyer personas are so much more dynamic than this. They have to become real to you.

There are different perspectives about what a buyer persona is. It is an ever-evolving concept. There should be a continual shift and transformation in regards to your ideal customer, as your business progresses. You may have created a buyer persona at the initial stage of developing your company, but she or he will constantly change and
you need to be aware of that.

A buyer persona highlights the roles and responsibilities of your target audience. You need to now what these are so that you can communicate effectively and know what content will reach out and capture their interest.

Tony Zambito, an authority for buyer personas in B2B marketing, defines buyer personas as research-based archetypal (modelled) representations of who your buyers are, what they are trying to accomplish, what goals drive their behaviour, how they think, how they buy, and why they make buying decisions including where and when they

Adele Revella, a marketing expert and foremost evangelist of buyer personas, recommends looking at buyer persona in two perspectives. The first perspective is the “Core Buyer Persona”. This seeks to understand the buyer in his own environment – without reference to whatever you might want to sell him. It tells you whether the buyer is looking for solution like yours, or is busy with other priorities. The second perspective is the “Product Persona Connection”. It reveals attitudes about your product and company.

As you can see from these different perspectives, a buyer persona is more than just a demographic or profiling of a customer. A buyer persona is a vision of your ideal customer based on intensive qualitative research.

In order to identify your buyer persona you have to do in-depth research of your customers. You then answer the ‘whys’ because ultimately, this will point you to how they arrived at the decision making point for the first initial sale and why they came back for more.

How Important is a Buyer Persona for NZ Businesses?

Buyer personas play a central role in business sustainability and growth. We all know that customers are the lifeblood of our business.

In creating a buyer persona, you will form a strong insight into your buyers. This will provide a substantial difference when planning for effective marketing campaigns. You can then adapt strategies to suit seasons, purchase decisions and buying behaviours.

Your buyer persona will help you tremendously when aligning your content to the interests of your market. Effective content increases social shares, which amplifies your reach to new and potential markets.

Understanding your buyer persona addresses gaps in the decision making process. It allows you to understand the issues and concerns that can stop your buyers from going through with the transaction. It allows you to create a solution for these issues and concerns.

The Four Essential Questions

Who are your buyers?

What are their goals?

What are their problems or challenges?

Where do they source information?

Who are your buyers?

The buyer persona concept is a model based on actual customers. But it may not be who you initially think it is. It may be one type of person who is looking for a particular solution to a certain need, or several people with different needs.

What are their goals?

Depending on whether your business is B2C or B2B, there are varying goals. B2C persona goals are based on personal initiative. B2B are based on common ground arrived at by several decision-making bodies.

What are their problems or challenges?

There are many problems or challenges that buyers have to hurdle over before they arrive at a definite decision. We don’t exactly know how buyers think, we can only assume what these problems or challenges are and identify them by observing.

Where do they source information?

Buyers use multiple channels to source information and new ones are sprouting up all the time. Knowing where your buyers get information from is important, so that you know where to market your products or services. You will also gain an understanding of how they consume information and how to effectively engage them.

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