So, you’ve figured out your buyer personas. Congratulations!
You can close your eyes and picture your buyers clearly – what they look like, how old they are, how they take their coffee in the morning.
Since you’ve cracked the case, it must mean your content marketing is perfectly aligned with these personas. Your website will attract, engage and convert your ideal audience on a regular basis.
(Cue spooky music).
What if, in actuality, you’re addressing a completely different audience? And, shocker, what if this mystery audience isn’t terribly interested in your current content marketing strategy?
Unless you’re paying close attention to your website visitors and their behavior, the probability of this happening is more likely than you think.
Getting the full story
According to Jeff Baker, Director of Digital Marketing Strategy at Brafton, if you get caught up in marketing to buyer personas only, you’re missing half the story.
“A buyer persona is what you look at based on sales data,” Jeff said. “‘Who are the people that have been buying from us? What are their ages, titles and industries?’ The real question is: Do you have any idea if you’re creating a web experience tailored to that persona? Are you speaking to them through your website?”
Through the magic of Google Analytics, you can easily segment your website visitors by age, gender and more, seeing how each individual arrived at your site and how often they’re converting.
You may know who’s buying from you, but you must also ensure you’re creating the right content for them on your website.
Going beyond your gut
Gut instinct can be invaluable in business, but there’s no replacing cold, hard numbers.
“People not using data in the first place is a huge issue,” Jeff said. “Some people think they know who their audience is, but instead they’re writing content to themselves because they think they’re their own audience. They’ve lost track of the truth.”
Take, for instance, the case of a Brafton client operating in the consumer banking industry. While the client was sure their content was properly addressing their buyer persona, they came to find out their website visitors skewed older, with more than 50 percent ranging from 45 years old and up. Meanwhile, in ascending order, each age bracket converted at a lower percentage.
The majority of this audience was not comfortable submitting personal details online, instead preferring to connect over the phone. Unfortunately, the client did not have a phone number listed on their website, effectively cutting off this group’s most likely form of conversion.
Connecting the dots
In order to make sure your buyer and visitor personas are aligned, you need access to accurate data.
“I would work with my sales team and whoever it is who works on the buyer personas to make sure those are done right,” Jeff said. “Sales teams should be collecting that information. You can start to get a real clear picture of the actual people who are pulling the trigger on deals.”
From there, it’s time to take a long, hard look at your website visitors.
Finally, focus on crafting high-quality content marketing that appeals to the people actually visiting your website. Once your visitor and buyer personas are properly aligned, higher conversion rates should be on the horizon.
After all, closing deals should happen because of your personas, not in spite of them.