Tag Archives: Persona

7 Elements Of Customer Understanding The C-Suite Must Master

Changes in customer and buying behaviors continue to rock the very foundations of many industries.  According to recent surveys by PWC, Forrester, IBM, and McKinsey, disruptive trends in customer and buying behaviors are expected to continue over the next five years.  Many organizations are undergoing digital transformations in order to improve customer interactions, engagement, and understanding. For CEOs and their C-Suite teams, developing deep customer understanding is becoming strategically important to staying competitive and relevant to customers. While customer understanding is becoming of vital importance to the C-Suite, the struggle continues on just how to attain customer understanding.  New digital…

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Use Buyer Personas To Humanize Your Content Marketing

All businesses and people within businesses become enamored with, process, at some point. Process is good. Process can also be bad. Bad to the extent doing the process becomes more important than meeting the end goal. When it comes to content marketing today, it just may be too much process is actually preventing a human connection with customers and buyers. The same can be said for buyer persona development as well. Misperceptions about the intent and value of buyer personas have resulted in too much process. Most common is the force fitting of buyer personas into buying processes, sales cycles, and…

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5 Reasons For Poor Buyer Personas Steering Marketing In The Wrong Direction

This July marks the 13th year since the first drafting of the concept and methodology of buyer persona development.  Notably, in the last three years, we have seen an increase in awareness of buyer personas.  Coinciding with the rise in content marketing, marketers seek to use buyer personas to help guide content strategies and tactics.  With this rise in awareness also come pitfalls in having buyer personas steer marketing efforts in the wrong direction. I raise this point due to the proliferation of content on buyer personas over the past few years.  Some helpful but the majority, in my opinion,…

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Does Your Buyer Persona Look Like A Sales Call Plan?

When she blurted it out, it was so on the mark, I just sat there in silence for a few seconds.  We have all had those moments.  Those moments when we think – “why haven’t I thought of that before?” I was engaged in a helpful conversation with an Inc. 500 head of sales in response to my article pointing out the differences between buyer profiling and buyer personas.  For this individual, the article hit a nerve.  Here is what she had to say: “We were approached by marketing to share in a budget for building buyer personas.  So when…

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Why The Differences Between Buyer Profiling and Buyer Personas Matters

Many marketing and sales executives agree the need to understand buyers today is greater than ever.  Markets and industries in B2B are still trying to figure out the impact of changing buying behaviors.  There is heightened attention in customer acquisition – mainly because it has become a guessing game. What many executives are discovering is the search for understanding and insights into changing buying behaviors can be confusing and lead to dead ends.    One problematic area of confusion is the understanding and terminologies related to buyer profiling and buyer personas.  Oftentimes, used interchangeably as if these two vastly different concepts…

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Understanding Buyer Personas and Behavior | AQs Blog and Grill

Recently, I made an appearance on AQ’s Blog & Grill, hosted by Alan Quarry.  It was a fabulous discussion.  Alan is one of our brightest minds as well as leading contributors in business and marketing today.  It has been a pleasure to interact with him.  Here is a brief bio on Alan: Alan Quarry is the Chairman of Quarry Integrated Marketing and leading mentor as well as entrepreneurial advocate.  He teaches Marketing Communications to 4th year and MBA classes at the Wilfrid Laurier University School of Business in Waterloo and Marketing Strategy in the Executive MBA program for the University…

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7 Criteria To Ensure Doing The Right Things For Buyer Personas

When we put time, resources, and money into anything we do business-related, it is natural to seek value in return.  Value comes from understanding what are the right things to get done.  How to ensure investment in buyer insight research and buyer persona development adds value is one question I get asked frequently. Doing The Right Things To get the most value out of investments, business leaders have to look beyond style or hype and look at the substance.  Using evaluative criteria to determine if they are making as well as have made the right choices.  This is usually the…

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5 Recommendations For Leaving Out-Of-Date Buyer Persona Practices Behind

Companies today are facing challenges to grow yet must do so in new ways.  Finding optimal effectiveness and efficiency in reaching buyers can be elusive.  Confronted with higher expectations by buyers for quality services, better experiences and seamless integration into their business operations.  These factors have B2B organizations on the hunt for deeper understanding of their markets and buyers. Living In The Past Despite these challenges, organizations can operate as if they are living in the past.  This includes existing buyer persona development efforts B2B companies have engaged in.  Not realizing they may actually be putting themselves further behind in…

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6 Advanced Best Practices in Buyer Personas Propel Growth

For many B2B organizations, there is renewed energy towards growth.  Hesitant during the long crawl of the recession, companies are once again setting more ambitious growth goals.  What makes this point in time different is buyers are no longer as they were just five years ago.  Understanding buyers in the new digital age takes on new meaning for how companies must adapt and achieve growth. Leaving Dark Age Best practices for buyer persona development are making significant advances.  Losing the constraints brought on by narrow functional contexts found in product marketing, content marketing, and campaign management.  Leading the way are…

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6 Reasons Why Buyer Personas Are More Important Than Ever

Alan Cooper first introduced the concept of user personas in 1999 to help inform design strategy, of which I was privileged to witness first-hand.  This was important then since user-friendly digital products and services were lacking.  Challenges on how to make the web user-friendlier were a pressing problem back then as well.  In 2002, I began a focus on buyer personas to address the changes in buying behaviors beginning to occur.  The focus shifted to informing customer strategies, which best fit, the goals of buyers. The Question The question I get asked occasionally when helping people is this: after a…

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