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Elements of a Persona

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Do you know what a persona is? If not, you’re not alone. This often-overlooked marketing term refers to a fictional personal profile often created by marketers or authors. While both professions use personas extensively, how they use them differs greatly. Marketers mostly create personas to match their target or niche market, helping them to better understand their audience. The overall goal is to better target content in a way that’s relatable to readers or visitors. Marketing professionals may use personas to help sell products, to create better advertisements, or even just to better represent a brand on social media websites. Personas can help you to reach your target market more efficiently, too, especially if you understand the elements of a persona and how to create one yourself.

Personal Profile

Creating a persona means that you need to become a bit like a criminal profiler, if just for a little while. Write out everything you know about your “persona” (i.e. an individual within your intended audience.) What’s their name? How old are they? What do they do for a living? Where do they live? If you’re stuck, pretend you’re creating a fake social media profile and generate as much information as you can. Jot it all down and you’ve covered the first element.

Motivation

What motivates the fictional person you created? Are they religious, or do they have certain values? Use this information to define what and how your persona can be best motivated to buying a product, signing up for your service, or becoming a member of your site.

Main Quote

Now that you have a basic persona written up, take it a step further. If your fictional character was real, and someone asked them for their favorite quote, what would it be? Why? Creating a main quote can provide telling information into your persona’s personality that may help you to best reach your audience.

Goals

Your persona’s goals are perhaps one of the most important points in its creation. What does your fictional profile hope to achieve, and why? Do they want to become a parent, or enjoy buying expensive clothes? Are they a foodie? Are they frugal, and have a goal of living greener in the future? Remember: your persona is a fictional representation of your audience. What goals would they have and why?

Concerns

Think about your character’s main concerns, too. What would hold him or her back from engaging with your brand? Use this information in your branding to ameliorate the concerns of your potential clients.

Primary Needs

Your persona’s primary needs are closely tied to his or her motivation. What does your fictional persona need to achieve? Perhaps it’s to feel better about themselves, or maybe it’s just to become more productive at a certain task. Use this information to showcase why your target audience should become loyal to your brand.

Feelings

Last on this list but certainly not least is feelings. When creating a persona, you want to think about how your target audience feels, both on an average day and when deciding whether to choose your product. Are they sad? Happy? Angry? Bored? Use this information to channel your marketing in a way that your target audience can relate to. If they can relate to your brand, they’re far more likely to become loyal to it.