Buyer personas are used to target the right set of people to market to. Personas are fictional, but they are supposed to be accurate and should always be up-to-date.
B2B companies can get a better understanding of what their customers are like with the help of buyer personas. However, your clients’ needs change over time, and so should your personas.
Here are a few reasons as to why and when you should consider updating your buyer personas every once in a while:
- Both your businesses have evolved. You cater to other businesses, which means that you know how fast companies evolve. New strategies and directions are being implemented, meaning that both your audiences are evolving with it.
- New segments are introduced. Segmentation always comes with the implementation of buyer personas. It is used to categorize your buyers based on their specific demographics. These can change over time, and you might need to add new segments to keep up with your customers’ needs.
- You’ve created too many personas. Yes, creating new segments is a must, but you should also be aware of the disadvantages of creating too many personas. Start with a core persona and build your way from there. Carefully study your data and make sure that there is a clear differentiation between each segment. If some of the segments are too similar, then consider merging them into one.
- Technology is progressing. Technology is fast-paced, and there is always something to look forward to with it. Take a look at the latest trends and what your competitors are using or implementing. Take advantage of the fad and hop on it to engage with new personas.
- Interactions are changing. The way your customers communicate with you is evolving continuously. See how your consumers are interacting with you and decide if you need to update your personas based on the way they convey their needs.
- Your Analytics tells you to do so. Your numbers and statistics can be a good indication of whether you need to update your B2B personas or not. One of your segments might be engaging with you better than another, and insights can tell you the reason why. Find out the reason behind this and update your other personas to encourage them to communicate with you better.
- You are getting fewer leads. If you notice a decline in your traffic, then it means that you are getting fewer leads. This might mean that you are not targeting the right people, and updating your buyer personas can help.
Aligning your branding with the personas that you are creating can help you get a better understanding of what your audience is like. Your buyers are prone to change, and allowing your business and personas to stagnate will eventually hurt your sales and conversions.
Below, we will discuss how you can update your outdated B2B buyer personas.
Segmentation is one of the most important parts of defining B2B buyer personas. Doing so will help you better understand your buyers and connect with them on a personal level. Personalizing your segments based on your customers’ needs will help you reach them better. This encourages engagement, which can eventually turn into conversions.
Here are three steps to personalize and segment your buyer personas:
- Map out the personas that you need to segment.
- Segment your clients based on their demographics and attributes.
- Send different personalized content to each segment.
The more detailed your segments are, the better you can personalize your ads and content based on your customers’ needs.
Update Your Data
Take a look at the data you’ve included on your B2B buyer persona and see if it still applies. Most data changes constantly, and implementing outdated numbers can hurt the way you reach your potential customers.
If your initial B2B buyer personas have incomplete data, then make sure to work on those. Get ample data from reliable studies and keep up with the trends. You can also look into the underlying data and include those in your personas.
Additionally, you should also re-examine your recent data and transactions. Gather up this brand-new information and add them to the proper segments.
Take Another Look at the Buyer’s Journey
If you haven’t done this in a while, then now is the right time to do so. Follow your customers’ journey and see how their buying perspective has changed. Master the current trend and adjust your techniques based on your clients’ needs.
See how your consumers are getting to the point of sale. Be aware of how they got acquainted with your brand, what made them interested in your products and services, and how they decided to use your services.
Using A/B testing is a good way to determine which strategies are effective for each segment.
Involve the Whole Team
Updating and redefining B2B buyer personas is definitely a job for marketers, but you can ask for help from your teammates. Besides, the more heads that you engage, the better your outlook about these personas will be.
While personas are mostly based on numbers, studies, and data, they can also be formed based on opinions, recollection, and interpretation. The whole team can brainstorm about what they think each persona needs. Your customer service representatives and sales agents can definitely add their opinions, as they are the ones who are directly working with your customers.
Make it a point to meet with your team every once in a while, listen to them, and take their suggestions into consideration.
Have you tried digging deeper into your B2B buyer persona the first time you created it? If not, then you are missing out. Refresh your buyer persona by looking into what your customers like. Get to know them better by taking a deeper look at their demographics.
Additional information such as knowing what your buyers’ hobbies and interests are and what they do for a living can help you determine which segment they belong to.
Here are other things that you can take into consideration:
- Family size
- Family status
- Educational background
- Income level
- What type of business they provide
Interview Existing Clients
One way to update your buyer persona is by getting direct feedback from some of your existing clients. Talk to the ones that you have a good relationship with and let them know that you are working to serve them better. Ask for their input and what improvements they are looking for.
Here are a few questions that you can ask when profiling your interviewees:
- How did you find out about our company?
- What is a day in your life like?
- What are your goals for your business?
- What are your main pain points?
- How do you look for information that you need?
- How do you select a vendor?
- Can you list your common objections?
- How many employees do you have?
- What other tools do you use for your business?
- What blogs do you read?
Knowing the answer to these questions will help you get a better idea of whether or not you should move your customers to a new segment or create a new one for them.
Consider Updating Your Negative Personas
Take a look at your negative personas and see if their needs have shifted over the years. The people who were not interested in your products and services might have changed their minds. You might have launched new products and services that they actually might be interested in. Review your data and see if these people would now be interested in working with you.
Alternatively, you should also keep some companies off your radar. Negative personas can also refer to businesses that are too difficult to target. Oftentimes, this includes corporations who are too expensive or those who are not in need of your services. It is counterproductive to spend time and money marketing to these firms, as they likely wouldn’t click on your ads anyway.
Name Your Personas
If you haven’t done this before, then you should make it a point to implement it ASAP. Naming your personas is a great way to identify and remember your customers. Name each segment and be creative with it. You can even involve your graphic designer by having them create images and pictures based on these fictional characters.
Here are some monikers that you can use for your updated B2B personas:
- Marketing Manager Donny
- Store Owner Bob
- CEO Cristina
- Customer Accounts Manager Martin
- Digital Marketing Manager Andrea
- Business Owner Robert
These names don’t have to be public, as it is easily meant to help you remember and identify your customers. Create a document describing each of these personas and share it with your team to encourage them to familiarize themselves with your target market.
Updating your customer personas doesn’t have to take up too much of your time. Besides, you already have enough information about your consumers, all you need to do is update them to make sure that they are still applicable and relevant. By applying the steps that we have discussed above, you’ll see the results pay off in no time.