Persona mapping will give you deeper insight into your customer base. The goal of any business is to make more connections with customers in order to make more sales. And in order to be profitable, you need as many happy customers as possible coming back to your business, telling their friends about their success with your products, and building upon those successes. To do this, you really have to understand your customer. And to understand your customer at scale, that’s successful marketing.
You’ve probably heard of persona mapping or customer mapping, but perhaps you’re not clear on how this might help you. In this article, we’re getting to it. If you’re ready to understand your customers at scale through persona marketing, the iThemes team is here to help you do that so your business can find greater success in your online marketing.
What is Persona Mapping?
Imagine you’re throwing a party for someone.
As the host, you need to know where the venue will be, what type of theme to decorate with, and how many people to feed – among other things. How will you obtain this information? By understanding who the party is really for.
Persona mapping is the development of customer profiles based on different segments of your target audience so that you can understand and connect with them most effectively.
These profiles reflect the audience’s characteristics such as personal attributes, behavior, motivations, and values.
So how do you understand your customer’s characteristics and needs to optimize for their interests? You create a unique customer persona by mapping it all out.
Persona development is key to understanding your customer and developing long-term customer relationships. Customers will remember how you made them feel. Understanding their perspective and how they is a great first step to creating products and services that fit their needs.
Persona Mapping vs Target Client
Did you know that a bell pepper and a ghost pepper are related? Despite coming from similar beginnings, they are very different end products, and they are very different user experiences.
The same goes for the persona mapping and the target client. You will find that they both have many matching elements, but while the target client is the bullseye in your product goal, the persona mapping is the story behind the target.
In other words, persona mapping allows you to better get to know your target client by uncovering aspects of your target audience that might not necessarily be readily identifiable. The more you know and understand the nuances of your target audience, the more focused you can be in connecting, engaging, and assisting your clients or customers.
The Many Perks of Persona Mapping
Now that you know what persona mapping is, let’s discuss why it’s important for your overall business strategy. Often business owners will market the way they think instead of what their customer thinks.
Persona mapping helps you understand where to focus your time and resources.
Each customer map is memorable and unique since you’ve attributed values, details, and traits to each. Each value is a marker of where you should focus your energy next. Use each persona detail as the steps to move forward with your campaign.
Having personas will improve conversions.
Having a humanized visualization of each persona helps you prioritize your resources so you can take actions that will benefit as many customers as possible. The side effect of this customer-focused approach is an improved conversion rate. Your marketing strategy will be successful if you’re putting the right content in front of the right audience.
Persona mapping allows you to walk in your customers’ shoes.
Rather than marketing products based on presumed data about what customers want, personas humanize the target audience. That way, consumers’ needs, preferences, and behaviors are better understood.
Mapping out personas helps your product development.
If you’re focused on your customers by more clearly understanding them, it will by default help your product team create solutions that help those customers. By clearly outlining aspects of your customer personas, your product team understands their needs and can address them. This creates a feedback loop of a better product-market fit that leads to better products and more sales. Of course that leads to more customers, so always revisiting your customer personas is important as your brand grows.
Personas allow for highly targeted marketing campaigns.
Because customer personas allow you to empathize with consumers by walking in their shoes and understanding their feelings in every situation, marketers can devise relevant marketing campaigns, especially on social media and email outreach. They can focus more on specific product features or use cases that are geared towards different customer segments.
Deliver a better online presence with personas.
When you understand your personas, you better understand your market. Creating content is easier when you can empathize with the people who are consuming your content. Your team can deliver a better digital presence, driving more interactions and reaching more customers.
Now that you know the benefits, your main priority is creating a persona map that’s right for you.
Create Your Own Persona Maps
Ready to make your own persona map so you can start connecting with customers? We thought you might be. As far as tools go, you won’t need a scroll or ink to mark the spot, just the power of the internet and the strategy in this article.
1. Collect key customer data.
In order to paint a picture of your ideal customer, you’ll need to collect qualitative and quantitative data. Depending on your customer base, this can come in the form of polls, surveys, community groups, customer interviews, emails, and social posts.
Obtain basic demographics such as age, gender, occupation, and location. For your customer map, there won’t be assumptions about the persona of customers from these demographics alone. They’re meant to provide initial information. It can guide you in asking the kind of questions you need to know to better the customer experience.
Next, get social. Find out your customer’s social media persona, what they read, and where they share. Visit different social channels that they frequent to better understand how to spread your campaigns across those platforms. This is a great way to learn what to post yourself!
PRO TIP: If you are just starting out, you may struggle to find the information you need. Imagine the person you want to serve or work with and then fill in your persona map with the information.
2. Split up personas into segments.
Once you’ve collected your customer data, it’s time to get organized. Based on your goals, you can categorize them into segments.
Some high-level persona segment examples are:
- Demographic: segments based on age, gender, occupation, marital status, or income.
- Geographic: segments based on location.
- Technographic: segments based on technologies, software, and device preferences.
For a more fine-tuned persona map, we recommend grouping personality traits together. The information creates a collection of specific personas by interests, lifestyles, and work roles. Simply keeping a tally of up-to-date information will allow you to group traits to create a more personalized persona map.
Even though these are fictional representations of real customers, segmenting them will allow you to start planning your marketing campaign.
3. Dig into the details.
Once you’ve started some high-level segments, you can continue the persona map by digging into the details. This is where you will use the qualitative part of your research to answer questions about each customer. Here are a few to get you started:
- What problem are they looking to solve?
- What kind of information are they seeking?
- What motivates them to make a purchase?
- What are their biggest needs?
You can find out these details from your research into each segment – those social media polls and surveys or customer interviews that were conducted. The more details you can glean, your customer persona map will be better.
Your goal is to send the right message or create the right content, to the right person, at the right time.
4. Strategize with your team.
If you’re part of a team, it’s time to rally the troops. Putting together a strategy based on your customer persona segments is the next step to creating a successful marketing campaign.
Create a buyer persona template where you can easily organize and present your results to your team. We recommend including input from different departments on how they would interact with buyer personas at different points of the sales cycle and how those traits can be addressed.
Persona Map Checklist
You’re really cruising now! We’ve not only learned how to build out customer segments, but we’ve also helped you to create a buyer persona template that has been shared with your team.
Here is a persona map checklist so you can perfect your map, your way, any time:
- Collect data to create personas representing the customers you currently want to attract. The goal is to make sure personas are based on substantial research.
- Segment your customers into high-level and detailed categories.
- Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and ask the right questions.
- Pull your team in and evaluate insights into how their roles impact the customer persona.
Now Get Started!
Persona mapping is a good way to build a brand that will stand out in a saturated market. Every customer is unique! It’s important to treat them as such.
Your persona map segments your potential customers into distinct personas with common traits and interests, making it easier to create targeted marketing campaigns that connect with each customer better.
With these actionable insights, you can create an accurate persona map informing your marketing, content, and social media strategy, and your audience becomes relatable and hopefully loyal.
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