OK b2b-ers. It’s time to get personal. When developing your marketing strategy, campaigns and other pieces of content, don’t forget it’s a real-life person you’re talking to, every step of the way.
Sounds like a no-brainer, I know, but you’d be amazed how frequently b2b marketers make the mistake of aiming marketing and sales materials towards a company persona, instead of a buyer persona: i.e. companies in X industry, with X number of employees, that need X service or product.
Sure a company persona is a reasonable place to start, but in order to create messages that really work, we actually need to go a step deeper and consider who is buying their product or service – and this is where creating a buyer persona comes in.
The problem with the company persona
There’s one good reason why we don’t stop at the company persona: because this method of thinking tends to lead you down the long, winding path to product-centric messaging: which isn’t always relevant to your buyer, and can easily turn into a sort of corporate chest-beating, given half a chance.
Creating a buyer persona helps take the focus off you and what you are trying to sell and focuses instead on addressing the problems that your prospects are facing. Not only will this make it easier to empathise with your prospects, but should also make it easier to ‘set off light bulbs’ in the minds of your targets: in turn stimulating great sales conversations and hot leads!
Defining a buyer persona
Most companies have multiple buyer personas, particularly in b2b where the buying process can involve several decision-makers. To keep it simple, try to identify the few main decision-makers, and the characteristics they share in common. You can identify whatever features are most relevant to you, but here’s some inspiration to get you started:
- Caricature: Draw a picture of your ‘typical’ purchaser. Think about their gender, age, marital status, education, location. Give them a name: it makes planning a whole lot easier.
- Role: What industry are they in? Role type, function, responsibilities?
- Attitudes: What is their attitude towards your industry, your product, and the issues it addresses?
- Motivators: What motivates them to get to their desk in the morning?
- Fears & annoyances: What are their biggest fears and annoyances in relation to their work?
How to find them
Buyer personas are often developed in collaboration within internal team members, in particular those with client-facing roles such as sales and customer service. You could also consider interviewing some trusted clients if you felt it was appropriate.
After you have a clear idea of who you’re targeting, it should be easy to craft sales and marketing messages to press that person’s buttons. Now you’re well on your way to connecting and engaging with your dream client!
Want to know even more about buyer personas ? You need to download The quick-start guide to inbound marketing for technology companies today!
Brand chemistry is a strategic inbound marketing agency that goes the extra mile to deliver results for our b2b clients. Our inbound marketing specialists are HubSpot certified and use the latest techniques to provide our clients with a steady stream of relevant new leads.