Buyer personas are a crucial component of successful inbound marketing, particularly for the sales and marketing departments. After all, the marketing team needs to know to whom they are marketing, and the sales team needs to know to whom they are selling.
But once you sit down to craft your buyer personas, you may find yourself staring blankly at a white screen for some time, wondering where on earth you’re supposed to begin.
There are currently 80 million Millennials in the U.S. – nearly one-fourth of the total population. And, with an annual buying power of $200 billion, they are the most lucrative market. Plain and simple: Nearly every marketer today is making Generation Y a priority – or at least working to understand what drives and delights this instrumental group.
One key element that justifies Millennial domination of the marketplace is the fact this new marketing style – which we’ll delve into in just a minute – isn’t just a fad. Here, we’ll discuss 8 important tactics for marketing to the demographic of the hour and explain why these tactics are lasting ones.
It’s commonly known that buyer personas are essential to any successful inbound marketing strategy. But, in the B2B industry there have been some interesting (and even seismic) shifts in the last two years, causing the need for the buyer personas you created even just six months ago to be re-evaluated and possibly redone. If your B2B inbound marketing strategy has not been as effective as you like, this could be the reason why.
So, it turns out that Hollywood screenwriters have quite a lot in common with professional marketers.
First of all, there are thousands (if not millions) of both of them, all trying to make a living through forging a connection with an audience. Both the screenwriter and marketers’ job is to connect with a particular audience in order to increase sales, whether it’s box office tickets or machine parts, their jobs are very similar.
The most important and valuable piece of knowledge any business can have is the deep understanding of who their customer is. When speaking with sales and marketing organizations across North America, I share that the most important question a business can answer is, “Who do we want to be a hero to?”
Creating buyer personas is an essential part of building a successful inbound marketing strategy. Buyer personas help you better understand your current and potential customers, what their pain points are, what information they need, and how you can position your offering to meet their needs.
Without documented buyer personas, essential inbound marketing tasks such as creating engaging content can be challenging.
Whenever people ask for a primer on inbound marketing, I always start by talking about buyer personas. Why? Because without knowing who your ideal customers are — their backgrounds, goals, challenges, and so on — it’s very difficult to create an effective marketing strategy to attract more of those types of people. Without understanding your ideal customers inside and out — and integrating that research across your entire marketing funnel — you risk stifling the growth of your business.
For most marketers, the buyer persona is one of the first things developed when beginning work on a new campaign. In an ideal world, you have time to carefully craft personas through a combination of internal stakeholder discovery and direct customer interviews.
Unfortunately, timing can sometimes cut the schedule short. The number of customer interviews could be reduced, or maybe eliminated completely. You find yourself relying on internal institutional knowledge for your customer insights because your team already “knows” your customer.
In the sales and marketing world, there are few issues that are getting more attention than the issues surrounding lead management and follow up. In my experience, clarity around lead management, qualification and response times are the crucial linchpin to align sales and marketing efforts.
It’s a rather scary statistic, but according to a study most recently done for Harvard Business Review, 71% of qualified leads are never followed up with. What’s more is, of the leads that are followed up on, they’re only touched an average of 1.3 times. This represents tremendous opportunity costs not only in revenue, but in the customer/prospect experience as well.
Creating buyer personas is an important part of a successful inbound strategy.
These semifictional representations of your ideal buyers help you understand your customers better; and when you understand your customers better, you can create content better geared toward them.