Market Artfully: How to Create Marketing Personas

Market Artfully: How to Create Marketing Personas

A marketing persona helps you turn the rough sketch you have of your customer into a vivid, life-like portrait.

We all know that a well-constructed landing page leads to better conversion rates. However, landing pages aren’t one size fits all! A CTA or special offer can snag one customer, but be completely lost on another. To lead a customer through the sales funnel effectively, you must learn their goals, concerns, and habits by creating marketing personas. A marketing persona helps you turn the rough sketch you have of your customer into a vivid, life-like portrait.

A persona includes details based on data, customer interviews, and competitive analysis. These details are then used to guide every aspect of your inbound marketing, at every level of the sales funnel: from ads, to landing pages, to web content and drip email campaigns.

A good persona outlines demographic details such as age, gender, income, and location, as well as professional ones, like job title/responsibilities, career goals, and pain points. Depending on the product or service you’re selling, you can also explore a persona’s more personal details such as relationship status, personal goals, or consumption habits.

Since social media and online metrics offer endless data mining opportunities, creating a persona can seem daunting. But the more complex your personas, the better you’ll know your potential customers and the more effective you’ll be in both marketing and sales. By creating personas, you position your brand to better for solve your customer’s problems and/or meet their goals.

For example, if that fake chair company I mentioned in my Ad Group Management post, looked through its Google Analytics demographics & interests reports, the company may discover that its typical customer is a middle aged, high-income homeowner who rarely shops online. If the chair company decided to send out a questionnaire to its mailing list, it may also reveal that a typical customer also owns a summer home and enjoys vacationing on Lake Ontario.

With these details, our chair company can now create a vivid portrait of an ideal customer – let’s call her Linda. The chair company might assume she’s looking for a super sturdy Muskoka chair. With the details of her persona, the company is able to create relevant ads that reach Linda as she’s searching for Muskoka chairs. The persona will also help the company optimize any landing pages associated with Muskoka chair ads, so that Linda – as a middle-aged person with little online shopping experience – will find it easy navigate. After all, she and customers like her would get frustrated by a landing page without good search features, or one that makes me scroll through cheap plastic lawn furniture to find the perfect Muskoka chair.

Below is a great persona template, courtesy of Buffer:

Sample Marketing Persona Template

Have you ever created a marketing persona? Tell your story in the comments section!

Ad Group Management and Quality Score

Ad Group Management and Quality Score

Well-structured ad groups not only increase your Quality Score (QS), but save you money.  When you run many ad groups but none or few get high CTRs, you run the risk of ruining your QS and end up paying more in future PPC campaigns (high QS accounts pay as little as 5 cents per click, versus up to $10 per click for accounts with poor QS!)

Restructuring your ad groups may result in more visibility for your campaign, which means a higher CTR and thus a higher overall QS for your account.

Keywords still play a large role in how your ad group is structured and its effectiveness. Let’s say your chair company’s latest campaign has one ad group with a lower than average CTR (under 1.5), and another ad group with a higher than average CTR (4 – 10).  You can assume that the ad group with the low CTR needs refinement or reorganization.

If the high CTR ad group is for “Living Room Easy Chairs”, and the low CTR ad group is for “TV Room Recliners,” then you can also assume that “Living Room Easy Chairs” is the more relevant (more searched for) term.

So, what can we do to improve the CTR of the “TV Room Recliner” ad group? Using the methods discussed in my previous post, we can find higher scoring, alternative keywords on AdWords Keyword Planner. These alternative keyword phrases can be distinct from the successful “Living Room Easy Chairs” group, yet still relevant. For example, you could find other high CTR descriptors for “Recliners” your company sells, such as “Retro Recliners,” “Blue Recliners,” or “Affordable Recliners.” 

The key is creating ad groups that are relevant to each other, yet still distinct. This does two things:

1) It expands the visibility of your campaign by adding more relevant keywords to describe your product/service features

2) If your newly structured ad group is effective, you increase your CTR and thus your QS, which means better ad positioning and lower click rates for future campaigns!

Have you ever had to restructure an ad group? Share in the comments below!

Google Ad Bidding

I’m Back & Talkin’ Bout Bidding

It’s been faaaar too long since my last blog post – a year, in fact! I’m back and a certified digital media expert. Okay, not really, but I did get a certificate in Digital Marketing Management from the University of Toronto and I’m eager to share what I’ve learned.

The next few posts will focus on Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and the positioning of Pay Per Click (PPC) ads, specifically how Google’s Quality Score determines the positioning of a PPC ad.

Until next week, have a look at these poorly placed Google Ads!