Brilliant Reads: unlocking the true power of personas

Welcome to Brilliant Reads. This week we’re discussing how to use personas to their fullest potential. From how to create them effectively, the importance of them being data-led and how to create engaging content for them. Personas may be yet another checkbox in your marketing planning but with the right tools they can grow to be a lifeline to your customers.

Interesting ideas and innovation happen when things are brought together in fresh ways. At Brilliant Noise, we are interested in the dots that are connected to create these new combinations.

The importance of personas

Econsultancy’s content strategy best practise guide highlights personas as one of the most effective ways to target and focus your marketing around your customers. They’re becoming a common part of marketing strategies for brands. However there’s a valuable technique that is often overlooked.

The ‘negative persona’ is building a persona of the exact person your brand doesn’t want to appeal to. This means you can focus your marketing on the right personas and plan ways to avoid wasting time and money on the wrong ones.

Common characteristics of a negative persona would be a customer that may not be aligned to your company’s ethics, negative in their expectations or with a high acquisition cost. It may seem like a backwards way of approaching personas but recognising your negative personas early on can allow you to save on resources and truly hone your marketing communications.

What are customer personas and why are they important?

Econsultancy, 3 mins

Personas vs Segments

Personas and customer segmentation sound like similar concepts. However, personas are a more advanced way of looking at your customer segments. Segmentation validates the identity of customer groups, whereas personas help to enrich those identities, humanising them and giving them a story.

By creating personas, you’re able to build a detailed customer decision journey through a combination of the extensive quantitative data you’ve gathered. This helps to know how and when you can be valuable to them.

Personas vs. Segments – What’s the Story?

Meltwater, 6 mins

Crafting a persona narrative

After the data comes the personalisation. Having your customer persona at the forefront of your planning will help you create content that is designed specifically for them – content they want, enjoy or seek out. Through your data, you can determine the channels that your customers are active on. Are they mainly on Twitter? Or do they prefer Instagram?

Creating targeted messaging will mean your content is relevant and resonates. What are your customer pain points and interests? If you give your audience what they want and don’t self serve, it won’t go unnoticed. Show you know your audience and speak their language. Then they’ll have more trust in you and be more receptive to what you offer.

How To Identify And Speak To Your Customer Personas

Forbes, 3 mins

The threat of lacking human connection

According to Forrester’s 2018 Customer Experience Index results, companies are struggling to maintain a human connection with their customers. In a lot of cases, it’s would take a huge organisational shift to orient around the customer. Fractured customer experiences come as a result of operating models that prioritise efficiency and control. Companies need to start seeing their customers as human individuals with emotions, needs, likes and dislikes and organise around that.

52% of consumers are likely to switch brands if a company doesn’t make an effort to personalise its communications to them. Personas can be an invaluable tool to help create and maintain this more personalised, human connection. It’s vital to implement them properly and maintain them. The secret ingredient for all of this may have been staring you in the face all along, it’s in the data.

Customer Experience Index Reveals Brands Lack Human Connection

Forrester, 2 mins

Data-driven personas

With more data generated in the last two years than in the previous 20,000 combined it’s essential for marketers to use data-driven personas to supercharge their strategy, content and campaigns. By using tools such as web analytics, social listening tools and digital surveys we can create fast and scalable insights. It’s not about waiting for months for survey data – you can adjust parameters in each tool when you spot new insights. That means you can answer questions like:

  • What are our personas talking about right now?
  • Where are our personas posting content online?

The answers to these questions can provide useful insight for strategists to plan, creatives to create and publishers to produce brilliant content. By using data driven personas you gain invaluable, in-depth knowledge to strengthen your marketing.

If you’d like to speak to our team about the powerful insights data driven personas can yield, please contact us.

The dream of data driven personas

Brilliant Noise, 3 mins

Thanks for reading. If you have any feedback, or suggestions for future editions, get in touch.