Before identifying your buyer personas, let's understand why they are so important in your digital marketing campaigns.
The challenge of traditional marketing activities, such as print media, newsletters, activations and billboards (although important for certain marketing campaigns) is that your target market is very broad and the ability to measure the results is limited. The key results you can expect are linked to awareness and promoting something specific.
In order to move past awareness and get into the mind of your ideal prospect to nurture them to become a lead, and finally a customer, you need to cover a lot more ground to guide them from awareness through to making a decision. And you want to be able to monitor when that might happen, so that you can mobilise your sales teams to act swiftly.
As we recently mapped out in our 7-step guide to building your content strategy, the cost of a skilled content team is expensive and it is essential to manage them efficiently to deliver results. To get the most out of your efforts as an individual (e.g. content manager, account manager, small business owner or content creator) or as a collective team, you need to know the WHO, WHAT, WHERE, WHY and HOW of your buyer persona to create effective content.
1. WHO’S READING YOUR CONTENT?
Build a specific profile of your prospective lead:
- Job role and line manager who will impact the decision
- What are their personal and professional goals?
- What challenges to do they face every day?
- What does a day in their life look like?
- How can you make it better?
2. WHAT MAKES YOU DIFFERENT TO OTHER BRANDS?
You can't be everything to everyone. First, become a specialist in something and position your brand to build trust.
- Identify the relevant industries that could use your services.
- Identify stakeholders in those industries and how they impact the product or service you offer (perhaps there are partnership opportunities).
- Identify a few competitors vying for the same audience.
- Create a comparison of what your competitors are focusing their efforts on and decide if it's worth competing with the same service, product or set of keywords.
- Make a list of the services you offer and identify how you can highlight them to be a specific solution to a specific problem.
Decide what will differentiate your business to be more focused than the rest through continuous segmenting.
3. WHY ARE YOU CREATING YOUR CONTENT?
Do you regularly talk about a specific topic, and tackle it from all angles to make sure you’re answering all your reader’s questions? Do you understand the purpose of each stage of the storytelling journey? The road to convert a lead into a customer is by knowing the purpose of your content and telling the story accordingly.
Know which part of the journey you’re creating content for:
- Awareness: Help your audience identify their problem with blog titles that include words like ´troubleshooting´/´resolve´/´risks´/´improve´/´optimise´/´test´
- Consideration: Help your audience decide on the best solution for their identified problem with words like ´solve´/ ´tools´/´solutions´/´software´/´checklist´
- Decision: Help your audience take action with words like ´compare´/´pros and cons´/ ´benchmarks´/´benefits´/´reviews´
Spend time building quality content pillars (a substantive and informative piece of content on
a specific topic or theme). Then, be smart in how you package it to fit in with your audience buyer journey.
4. WHERE WILL YOUR CONTENT BE CONSUMED?
- Are you publishing your content on the platforms where your buyer personas are spending their time?
- Are they using it for the reasons you think?
- Are you sure you aren't serving them promotional content in their downtime? Ensure you’re fitting in with their natural online user journey instead of being interruptive.
5. HOW IS YOUR CONTENT SOLVING A PROBLEM?
Based on the answers you identified in step 1, you should have a good idea of your ideal buyer persona’s unique set of challenges and goals, in both their personal and professional environments.
You will create a strong lead-nurturing journey by including content that:
- creates awareness about challenges in your industry or selected topic,
- provides tools to assist your ideal prospects in solving these challenges themselves (which indicate that they are considering a solution to their problem)
- rates and reviews solutions (which indicates that they might be ready to make a decision on a final solution),
By regularly checking the performance of your valuable content, you can make adjustments to CTAs or content that’s linked, and refine your email marketing campaigns. A monthly report is critical for driving strategy, but agile processes and decision-making with all stakeholders are key to delivering content at the right time, in the right format, to the right people to nurture your hard-earned leads.
We specialise in content marketing and social media marketing strategy development within various key industries. Find out more about how we can help you.