You cannot sell to a person you don’t know. Whether you a marketer or a sales agent, the eCommerce software you are using is not enough to make your sales. You need to take it further to maximize your sales or marketing campaign reach.
That means you have to develop the right content and target the right audience. But most importantly, you have to work beyond your customers’ demographics.
In this case, you need to do your due diligence. Get to know where your customers go for trusted sources of information. Get to know what informs their buying decisions. That way, you will be able to plan a well-executed campaign that targets the demographic that matters to your business. You will also be able to get your message out there where your customers can easily find it.
The easiest way for any brand to do this is by building buyer personas.
What is a buyer persona?
Also known as customer persona, a buyer persona is more of a semi-fictional customer description. This description is usually based on behavior, lifestyle, customer’s demographics, challenges, and motivations. Customer personas in B2B contents are all about the customer (or a buyer) who are responsible for making decisions with regards to buying services or products on behalf of their company.
How can you create a buyer persona for your B2B customers?
The steps for building customer personas in both B2B and B2C marketing are almost similar. But there are distinctions. Here are the steps you will need to help you plan your marketing campaigns.
#1: Have the right buyer attributes in your figure tips
Customers don’t come packaged the same way. You have to research the customers you are interested in targeting. Dig deeper, and get to know their motivations, lifestyles, goals, and challenges. Some of the categories you would need to look at as a marketer include:
- Their career – Determine how long they have been in the industry, their buying power, and needs to be done to trigger a buying decision.
- Consider their goals, objectives, and motivations – These are some of the factors that drive buying decisions. Consider their business goals.
- Consider their lifestyle – Determine their activities and responsibilities while on the job and during their free time.
- Media – How social are they? Where would you mostly find them on social media platform like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc? Determine where they go for networking or their trusted sources information. There could include forums, business social media platforms or conferences, among others.
- Demographics – Find out the location of their businesses (could be local or international), their age and the firm/industry/company they represent.
- Brands: Look at the brands they are using at their company. Determine what they don’t like or the features they are falling in love with about their services or products.
- Are there pain points or challenges they are facing? – Businesses are about solving problems. Get to know their specific problems that need solving. Also, determine specific challenges they might be encountering when trying to meet their company’s objectives/goals.
- Objections: Check out whether they might be having any prior frustrations related to any a similar product to the one you are selling or with yours.
It is very important to keep these factors in mind because they give you a good picture of who your prospective customer is.
#2: Research your buyers
People don’t buy a product, no matter good it looks like. People buy into solutions for their problems. That is why it is very important for you to research your ideal buyer. In this case, you need to brainstorm the specific industries and companies where your service or products would be needed.
Sometimes, you might not know where to go. In that case, you can consult your company’s customer services and sales teams (customer-facing departments). These ones have a lot of information and insights that could easily get you into the doors of your potential customers.
Once you establish who your customers are, you can kick off your online research. You can visit sites like LinkedIn. LinkedIn will offer you a look at various employee and companies profiles where you can glean lots of information you have been looking for. The platform also offers you opportunities to communicate with other professionals, share articles and also listen to what people saying there.
Personas are based on actual customers. That means you will need to interview different prospective clients. Remember you are dealing with professionals. You need to be mindful about their time.
Apart from interviews, you can also use Google, Facebook and Twitter Analytics or any other tools integrated on your eCommerce platform to look at different keywords and topics that customers are searching or sharing. Once you have got all the information needed, now you can go ahead and start building your buyer persona.
#3 Coming up with the buyer personas
Your B2B buyer persona should be focused on customers’ business objectives, motivations, and challenges. You already have gathered data different people and have already started noticing different patterns for different buyer personalities. Segment these personalities according to their job positions and the industry they are operating in. Then create a 3-6 buyer persona that will be used by your marketing team.
To bring your persona to life, each buyer needs to have a name and a face. For example, for B2B personals, you can easily separate different personas by job titles. For example, you could have something like Johnson IT consultant or Parth Communications officer. The use of different job titles helps your team have the picture of each of the buyer in mind when launching their marketing campaigns.
#4: Adapting company’s marketing strategies for your buyer personas
You created the buyer personas to allow you to focus your marketing campaign to your target, segmented audiences. You can create content based on different personas. Such content is always tailored to the specific stage where your customer is on the buying funnel.
For example, if you are interested in educating your customers about your product (awareness stage in your buyers funnel), take a look at the buyer persona. Then based on that information, you can sketch out all the content ideas you will need to capture the attention of that particular segment.
Summing it up
In this technological age, there is a lot of information that knocks at the doorposts of your customers. If you want them to ‘hear your marketing cry”, you need to make sure you are sending them information that is targeted to solving their challenges. That is the essence of buyers personal targeting.