When starting out with Inbound Marketing, my thought process was much like many other online marketers. I would think, “I need to get the most visitors I possibly can to visit my blogs and websites, which means I need to target as many people as I possibly can!” Right? Nope. As much as having a steady flow of website traffic is fantastic, how much are you really converting? How many form submissions are you receiving? How many calls are you getting that are ACTUALLY interested in what you do? Chances are, you would get more junk calls and form fills than quality leads.
If you are familiar with Inbound Marketing, you have probably heard of a “buyer persona” and why they are essential to utilize. If you haven’t, this blog may give you the push you need to jump on the buyer persona train. Like we always say at Leads Ngin, “If you try and target everyone, you will end up targeting no one.”
Buyer Personas Help You Understand Your Customers on a Deeper Level
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional character that you create, based on a mixture of researched information and real-life data to resemble your ideal client. This data is comprised of things like demographics, spending habits, behaviors, and so on. Why is this important? The more details you understand about your ideal client, the easier it is to put yourself in their shoes, making it so you can appeal to them on a much higher level.
Picture your ideal client or customer in your mind. What do they do for a living? How old are they? Are they married with kids? Where do they like to shop? Where do they spend their time online?
Painting a full picture of who they are and what their daily lives look like makes it so much easier to tailor your marketing efforts to the interests and needs of your ideal audience. If you don’t understand what makes them tick, how do you expect to get through to them?
Your Ideal Buyer Persona May Not be Who You Thought it Was
Many companies have opted to skip the step of creating and defining a buyer persona because they feel they are already in tune with their ideal client. Fair enough. However, your assumption may not always be correct.
What have we learned in our experience? LOOK AT YOUR DATA! More often than not, we have seen that our client’s company data showed that their ideal client was someone other than their prediction. Taking the time to map out the fine details of your persona, based on your real-life data will help you tremendously in targeting the right people, which results in stronger communication, stronger relationships, and increased return.
How Do you Do it? Maybe this Story Will Help.
A client that we worked with a while back owned a reasonably large HVAC company which was averaging about $20 million in gross sales per year (let’s call him Bob!). I asked Bob who his ideal client was and he responded, “Homeowners over 35 years old.” Now, before I keep going, do you think you would be able to send a targeted marketing email with such a broad idea of who your audience is?
Bob lived in California, which we all know is not the most cost-friendly location. The majority of homeowners in California are over the age of 35, meaning his idea of his buyer persona was even broader than you would think. So, we explained the importance of correctly and accurately identifying who his best clients were.
Luckily, Bob had a client list of 50,000 people (yes, WOW!). We did a statistical analysis with a third-party vendor to truly identify their ideal client. Needless to say, the findings were shocking! Bob was in complete disbelief when the data identified their ideal buyer persona being a retired homeowner who is 80+ years old with at least 30% of the equity in their home and $50,000 in liquid assets. 80+ years old! A little far from 35, you think? Bob’s reply to our analysis was, “Are there that many people that old?”
Once we identified Bob’s ideal persona, it gave us the ability not only to write better content for them, but we were also able to identify their interests and where they were hanging out online. We were able to reduce their overall cost per acquisition by 32%.
Stop trying to target everyone and start defining who your ideal client is. Put yourself in their shoes! Make sure you are targeting the right person and get to know them on a deeper level. Once you accomplish this, you will start to see huge leaps in your marketing efforts.
Need help in defining your target persona? Use our FREE Buyer Persona Guide to help you determine who your ideal customer is!