What is Buyer Persona?

What is a buyer persona? This business-related question is the focus of our piece today. Let’s take a closer look at this concept and its key uses in modern business.

The Basics

A buyer persona is essentially a profile of the consumer. In all businesses where a product or service is being sold, the selling company is best served by knowing its customer base. Knowing more about the consumer enables companies to provide product that is better suited for them. Tracking and managing such information on consumer suitability is done via the persona, or buyer profile. This telling profile is generated via public studies, consumer research, and surveys.

The report itself can vary greatly in detail, length, and the size of its represented consumer group. Typically though, as more knowledge is better than less, these profiles contain great sums of data on the consumer group. Below are some examples of what exactly is contained by these reports.

– Verbatim quotes from consumers
– Popular political alignments
– Religious and ethical alignments
– Statistics on age, sex, and race
– Sentiments for similar products
– Seasonal patterns of the consumer
– Consumer desires and necessities, general and niche
– Current and forecast trends and styles
– And much more

Subsequent Knowledge Gained

We already know that by broad definition, the buyer profile or persona provides producing businesses with a map of their customer base. The specifics of this map and the knowledge gained by it can then be organized into five areas of revelation. These five areas cover buyer priorities, success factors, barriers to success, effects on the buyer during shopping, and consumer decision-making criteria.

Buyer Priorities

Buyer priorities are the core priorities of the consumer base. What is the problem they have that they wish the product to solve? What are their preferences when it comes to the solving of problems in daily life? Understanding these priorities and goals helps the business greatly.

Success Factors

What factors help to garner company success? In other words, companies want to be aware of every possible factor that could positively influence consumers to select their product over competitors’. Such factors can include psychological preference, ongoing trend compliance, product versatility, a positive public image of the company, and more.

Barriers to Success

In this area of information gleaned from the buyers’ persona, businesses can take a closer look at what is stopping them from achieving better results with the consumer. These barriers can involve nearly anything, and it is up to the builders of the buyer profile to effectively harvest and supply these much-needed details. Barriers often cited by consumers in the report can include product safety concerns, poor image of brand, a product that fails in expectations, and better products or price-points from rivals.

Effects on Buyer During Shopping

Another area of concern illustrated by the buyer profile is that of the effects and variables at play that can affect the consumer while shopping. The very telling NBC News article, “5 Ways Store Colors Can Influence Shoppers,”  illustrates just one of these powerful areas of influence: color use. Other factors can include background music, traffic flow direction, product placement, celebratory themes, and many others. These factors pertain to online and brick-and-mortar stores as well.

Decision-Making Criteria

Finally, the last area of insight provided by the buyers’ persona is consumer decision-making criteria. It’s important to know what differs your product’s chance of purchase from the competitor’s. This area of the profile confronts this question directly. In a struggling company, it is likely that there are abundant specifics here that guide the consumer to the competitor as opposed to your business.

Businesses want and need to know as much as possible about the consumer audience standing before them. This ensures the best chance at a shining public reception and subsequent sales to match. The buyer profile, or buyer persona as it is called is the tool used by today’s businesses to do just this.

See also: Top 10 Best Online Masters in Marketing Degree Programs 2014