When marketers build messaging, they typically start by understanding the unique value of their company, products, and services. But just as important is understanding your customers: their roles, their pains, their business priorities and goals, their part in decision making—and their distinct buying journeys.
When you are in tune with your customers and prospects, you have the means to help them get over the pain of change and adopt the new opportunities your solutions offer. The most common reason your prospects say no is that change is painful or difficult. When you have detailed personas, you can create messaging to demonstrate how your product or service benefits them, how they can leverage your solutions to improve their situations and positively impact their companies.
Personas let you get into that prospect’s shoes and ask, “If I put on NEW shoes, do my feet feel better? Can I run faster with greater efficiency? Can I perform at a higher level?”
Improving sales by changing the way you talk to your customers might also require your team to overcome the pain of change. But when you take the time to develop personas for all your different potential buyers—and then apply those insights to all the tactics in your marketing strategy—you’re already a step closer to winning more sales.
Why You Can’t Skip This Step:
Put the Customer Front and Center
Building messaging around specific buyer personas—and creating content to support them through each stage of their journey with you—is central to the success of any marketing effort. Most marketers know this basic principle, but surprisingly few organizations build and use personas and messaging consistently or revisit them as a resource once they’ve been developed.
Detailed personas for all your customers create a foundation for accomplishing several core goals:
Every ad campaign, every social media post, and every banner should target a customer need, broaden your prospects’ vision, and inspire action.
Your website should be able to help support prospects through their buying journeys with relevant content (e.g., white papers, blog posts, video) that keeps generating an enthusiastic “Yes!”
By the time your sales team reaches out to the qualified leads that your marketing efforts have generated, customers should be primed and ready to hear exactly how your solutions are going to make their lives better.
Growing Your Framework: How Do You Learn?
If you aren’t sure where to begin your customer research, we recommend starting with the most direct routes.
First, interview current customers.
Reaching out to customers you know are happy—and a few that perhaps are less satisfied—will help you answer questions such as:
What is their industry?
What is their role within their company?
What are their daily responsibilities?
What are their priorities?
What prevents them from meeting those responsibilities and goals?
Who do they report to?
Who must they consult to make a buying decision?
Why do they need a solution like yours and how badly do they need it?
How exactly can your solution’s unique value help them reach their goals or meet their obligations?
What benefits will they gain from using your solution?
What objections or concerns are they likely to have about your solution?
No matter what, talk to sales.
For the most current insights into what’s going on with customers, reach out to your sales team. They spend their days talking to customers and prospects, so they have a wealth of information that you can use to create persona messaging. They can also help you better understand the specific benefits and features that generate the “aha” moments on a sales call.
Your sales team can also fill in details about how customers move through the buyer journey:
Are your ideal customers aware that a problem or need exists?
Are they aware of the causes of the problem?
Do they know that a solution exists?
Are they aware of your product or service and that it provides a solution to the problem or need?
What questions do they have about your solution?
What is their view of your solution compared to options from your competitors?
Are they aware of your successes for other customers?
Do they understand how to use your product or service?
Are they interested in learning more? If so, which products or features interest them most?
Are they willing to talk with you? If not, are they willing to read, listen to, or watch more information?
Get to Know Your Real Buyers
You can’t please everyone. Fortunately, you don’t need to. The key to marketing success isn’t just connecting with an audience, it’s connecting with the right audience—at the right time.
Using the answers to these questions, you can create persona messaging and use it to keep customers at the center of your content strategy. Refer to your messaging regularly to verify that everything you create, from websites to white papers, communicates the benefits of your solution when applied to your customers’ real needs.
In conjunction with your persona messaging, an understanding of your ideal customer’s buying journey can help you create a successful marketing and content strategy that improves organic search ranking, converts website visitors into qualified leads, and converts leads into sales.
Get Expert Help
The most important takeaway in all of this is to keep the customer at the center of everything your marketing team creates.
Developing personas and mapping content to your customers’ buyer journeys does take time. If bandwidth is tight, partnering with an agency team can provide a dedicated force to complete your messaging tasks.
Look for an agency that can also help you determine—
how customers want to consume the content your team creates;
how to work with sales to deliver content that helps generate profits; and
how to build a site that attracts customers and converts them to qualified leads.
Are you ready to transform the way you connect with customers?
Contact Refactored and we will help you get started—and keep your momentum going.