5 Buyer Persona Myths Debunked

4 min read · 7 years ago


buyer personas myths debunked

As an inbound marketer, one of the most important tools you’ll use is the buyer persona. What may seem like a simple document is actually the key to your inbound success and the foundation for your content creation. That’s why it’s imperative to know what’s true and what’s not when it comes to building out and using your own personas. Whether you’re creating a buyer persona for your business or for a client’s, you’ll need to know these 5 buyer persona myths and why they’re just not true.

1. Buyer personas are pointless

Hopefully as an inbound marketer you already know the great importance of buyer personas. However, explaining this concept to others, especially clients, can be a hard task. We often hear that buyer personas are pointless, or are not needed. In reality, they are the foundation for all of your marketing efforts. Using a buyer persona as an evolving, dynamic tool will guide your campaigns in the right direction and make them more successful. If you don’t have buyer personas you can’t write appropriate content for the many different people coming to your site. Not using buyer personas will actually do you a disservice. Creating and getting to know your ideal buyer personas will help you write real, impactful, and useful content. This will lead your potential customers to come to your site to get answers to their questions and solve their problems. This is exactly what you want!

2. A buyer persona doesn’t need many details

Some people believe that when thinking about ideal customers, all you need to know is what they want or need. Potential customers’ desires are taken into consideration when a buyer persona is created, but this shouldn’t be the only thing you think about. There are many other details that should contribute to your buyer persona including: demographics, buying habits, where they are in the buyer’s journey, job position and career, and where they go to find their information. The answers are in the details. These precious facts will help you target exactly the type of content each buyer persona is looking for. In essence, the details are the most important component to your buyer personas.

3. A buyer persona is the client you want to sell to

Yes and no. Buyer personas are defined as your ideal customers, or real buyers who will make decisions about the products or services you offer. You don’t want to be in their face, selling them something – this is reminiscent of old school outbound marketing techniques. Instead, you should get to know your buyer persona and their habits, why they would want to visit your website, and how you can help them solve their problems. Of course your end goal is to get your ideal customers to purchase whatever type of service you’re offering, but you want to give them a human experience by helping them and letting them know you understand them. A statement like, “We understand what you’re going through. We’ve been there” is much more impactful than “My product is so amazing, it can help you.” If they know you can relate to them, your buyer personas will be more likely to engage with your brand and become advocates, who share their pleasant experiences with the world.

4. A finished buyer persona document goes on your website

As marketers, you and I understand the importance of buyer personas, but explaining this to clients can be a difficult task. Interviewing clients and customers may bring up questions about where their information will go and why. One of my clients thought that their finished buyer persona would go on their website as a part of the copy. This is not true. A buyer persona is an internal document for use by the marketers like yourself. They will never go on a client’s website. Buyer personas should be kept safe with your important marketing campaign and website building tools. You will need to review them for any type of marketing efforts you take part in.

5. Once you develop buyer personas, you’re done

It’s easy to think that after you create your buyer personas you’ll tap yourself on the back for a job well done, and be on your way to bigger and better things. However, this is just not the case. A buyer persona is a living document that will change as your business changes, or as your client’s business changes. It is ever-evolving and adapting with your marketing efforts. It’s not just a one-time document that you file away once you’re done writing it. You’ll need to review this internal document every time you begin to write website content, blogs, or any downloadable marketing pieces. You’ll even use it when you design a website because giving your website visitors a clear pathway is one of the most important objectives of a site. The bottom line is, you’ll never be done using your buyer personas because they are the foundation of your marketing campaigns.

Buyer personas are like the beams and planks that make up the structure of a house, without them, your marketing campaigns would fall apart. The importance of buyer personas is clear and the myths surrounding them have been thoroughly explained. Now that you know the ins and outs of what is true and not true about buyer personas, you can get started on making these useful documents an integral part of your marketing efforts. Remember: details are key!

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