CREATING AND UNDERSTANDING YOUR BUSINESS’S BUYER PERSONA
Too often we sit in meetings making assumptions about our customers. Simple Sally lives in Cape Town South Africa. She‘s in her thirties and earns an average salary. Using data and statistics that are too broad or inaccurate rarely reveal the consumer insights we need to market our products successfully. As a result our marketing campaigns and content are too non-specific and fail to land – if we don’t understand our customers’ needs and wants, how can we possibly show them how our product or service answers these? Inevitably we also have to raise our marketing budgets, because the reach net we cast is much wider than it needs to be.
Creating a successful buyer persona helps us develop consumer purchase paths. Consumer purchase paths help us determine which platforms we need to market on, as well as the content we need to share on them. So getting the buyer persona wrong has a knock-on effect in the entire marketing ecosystem.
BUYER PERSONA EXPERIMENT AT THE ADD LAB
One of my longest standing clients is The ADD Lab – South Africa’s leading Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) specialists. The medical practice diagnoses ADD and ADHD through the use of a QEEG and offer brain-based therapies such as Biofeedback, Tomatis Method, and Interactive Metronome following a successful diagnosis.
Instead of relying purely on analytics data from their website to build a buyer persona for the business, I asked four different stakeholders in the business to answer a set of key persona building questions, which would help build a persona based on real people and interactions, not assumptions. The four stakeholders were:
– The founder of the business
– The business manager
– The receptionist
– One therapist
FINAL BUYER PERSONA
After interpreting all the stakeholders’ answers patterns and trends helped compile The ADD Lab’s ideal buyer persona:
- – Female mother, between the ages of 37 and 48.
- – Her child’s school usually triggers her to start looking for help for her child.
- – She first sees a doctor, then a physio, OT, speech therapist and educational psychologist before hearing about The ADD Lab from a friend or family member.
- – She’s also done a significant amount of research on Google regarding available therapies.
- – By the time she gets to The ADD Lab she has spent a significant amount of money, but isn’t closer to finding a solution for her child’s problem.
- – The answerless journey combined with the skepticism from her husband makes her desperate for answers. It also places a lot of pressure on the entire family unit.
- – Her need for constant reassurance and communication makes her come across as needy.
- – She is very involved and needs constant communication regarding her child’s progress.
- – The biggest ah-ha moment happens when results are shared from the QEEG.
- – She is on Facebook.
- – It was interesting to note that all four stakeholders pointed out that parents do a significant amount of research about available therapies on Google, but still choose to follow the ‘traditional’ route of diagnoses to treatment (Doctor, physio, OT, speech therapist and educational psychologist.) This highlights a need for the business to be present when the problem is first identified by the school, before the research begins. A school or teacher awareness programme could aid in building brand awareness.
– The constant need for reassurance and communication highlights an opportunity for The ADD Lab to invest in content that supports the mom or to perhaps build a support group of sorts through the likes of Facebook.
- – There was a significant amount of focus on the QEEG (diagnosis tool) and very little to no focus on the therapies available at The ADD Lab. This over focus could indicate that there is some difficulty upselling and cross selling of therapies that follow diagnosis.
- – When comparing the buyer persona to analytics data from the website, demographics were a match.
- – The need to research and develop the persona’s path to purchase is evident. This will allow The ADD Lab to identify more opportunities to connect with their clients which will in turn drive content themes and topics.
- – A special keyword campaign focused on teachers and schools needs to include more than ADHD schools and ADD in class, ADD teacher help, ADD school, remedial school, ADD teacher tips, ADD classroom tips, parent teacher ADD.
The buyer persona development process didn’t only reveal The ADD Lab’s ideal persona. It also delivered unique insights that can now be used to drive other parts of their marketing effort.