B2B Buyer Personas: Marketing to Your Ideal Customer, Not Just Anybody
To reach its true potential, a B2B Buyer Persona needs to be more than just a shallow profile. Your marketing team needs to dig into pain points, key motivators, jobs-to-be-done, and how the ideal customer interacts with other roles in B2B buying choices.
The current sale process is massively independent, with 68% of buyers favoring individual research before creating a shortlist. If your website doesn’t resonate with your buyer’s priorities, or your content doesn’t show up where they are looking, you are likely to lose a lot of prospects that could have been leads. Because the B2B personas are growing in significance for the modern business-to-business marketer, we’ve outlined 5 key points to bear in mind when researching, creating, and activating buyer personal in your business.
What are B2B Buyer Personas?
Advertising and marketing is expensive and often ineffective. Businesses can end up marketing and advertising to individuals who are not relevant or who have no interest in their services or products. To make sense and avoid wasting vast amounts of money, we need to focus on the ideal customer when communicating to our target audience and not just anybody. The “ideal customer” we referred to here really is somebody – a character or a person who fully represents our target audience.
Marketers call these characters personas, and they need to build a picture of them before starting marketing to them. A buyer persona is an individual with a personality and key characteristics that help you understand who you are talking to, developing a product for, and doing business with.
Steps to Create B2B Buyer Personas
- Understand Consumer Needs and Decision Stages
A normal B2B buying process involves awareness, evaluation, and purchase stages. It all begins with the realization of a need for a service or product. This could emerge from, for instance, repetitive tasks that can cause automation or a new line of work that requires the help of new services and products. Your marketing team will characterize the need/problem and the desired solutions from their personal perspectives to resolve such needs.
Identifying these needs, related insights from the perspective of the consumers will help you make your service as relatable and unique as possible for these buyers and grab their attention. Perceiving their online consumption habits can help you guide the creation of influential content in the form of social content, blog posts, e-books, video, podcasts, and case studies.
In the evaluation stage, you will be looking for a solution. Consumers will seek suppliers who can offer products that fit their urgent needs. On the other hand, buyers place an order for a service or product from the desired vendor in the purchase stage. It’s a key stage as it involves negotiations, followed by a final agreement on price, quantity, delivery duration of the product or service in use, and much more.
- Pain Points
Recognize all the different stakeholders that are involved in a B2B purchase – and then try to understand their personal challenges or pain points. How can your solutions or products help them solve these?
Suppose you deliver CRM solutions to companies of different sizes and industries? What are the pain points of the businesses as a whole that you can solve? Your CRM solutions can perhaps help them track goals and performance more easily, simplify the sales process and boost employee productivity.
While keeping that in mind, how can your product solve the pain points of an individual? To make your sales process more efficient, you will need to recognize the challenges faced by each individual and tailor your communication accordingly.
What do they do for a living?
Before you sit down to mend your ideal B2B buyer persona, you’ll need to learn a few facts about your potential customer. Facts such as:
- Job Details
Consider checking the LinkedIn profiles of your prospective buyers. Learn what you can about their job titles, skills, education levels, professional background, and team structures.
You should also discover whether they’re managers with people reporting to them or individual contributors. Follow the same process for all the people (across different levels) involved in a normal purchase, including influencers and decision-makers.
By doing so, you will manage to customize your communications so that you can provide your prospect with a greater experience. For instance, profiles in directorial or managerial levels may require less education about the complexities of their industry as compared to a pupil.
- Demographics to Understand Who Your Buyer Persona Is
Demographic data creates the core of any stable buyer persona. Without it, you can’t create a suitably complex persona or truly understand who your ideal customer really is.
One of the benefits of B2B research is that you can obtain valuable insights about your personas, insights that help you portion your potential market into more advanced subcategories.
As such, demographics must include gender, age, income or ethnicity, education level, and so on. Depending on your business’s needs, demographic insights can be quite extensive or extremely specific. For instance, most buyer personas feature an ideal age range of the perfect buyer rather than a specific figure.
The same goes for most demographic categories, such as income level. Simply put, demographics are a great place to start when building your own buyer personas. For example, your ideal customer may be:
- Between the ages of 35 and 45
- Earns $80,000 per year or more
- Where, what, and how do they shop?
Figure out how your prospective consumer likes to interact with vendors. Do they prefer over-the-phone conversations or in-person meetings?
Do they enjoy consultative selling, or do they simply want to grasp the various features of your solutions? Think outside the box and ensure you deliver an experience that aligns with their expectations.
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