What’s everyone doing with their personas nowadays? We’ve identified the top 3 persona marketing trends that are reshaping the way we think about personas. These are becoming more and more popular for a simple reason: they work. Here are 3 of the latest trends you won’t want to miss out on:
Trend #1: Location-Based Personas
When the notion of personas first started getting really popular, marketers tended to focus on the idea of the “narrative” — ie., the subject’s background, including their pain points, and goals.
These are very important, but if you focus only on these aspects, but don’t focus on these at the expense of data and statistical analysis. The persona’s narrative should be based upon solid data, one of the most important pieces being the persona’s geographic location.
For instance, if you know that your target persona works in the hospital industry, you’ll want to target your ads to areas where hospitals are located, as well as surrounding neighborhoods where they might be commuting from. Easy peasy.
Next, your persona’s location in a specific area can be tied to very important demographical information, including:
- Income levels
So, placing your person in the correct location can unlock new information. You can then use the new data to refine your marketing efforts for greater accuracy.
Trend #2: Brand Longevity as a New Factor in Customer Loyalty
“It’s very easy to make a viral video, but longevity and consistency, that’s hard” – Michelle Phan, YouTube Personality and Entrepreneur
Customer loyalty has traditionally been linked to characteristics of the product or service, such as quality, materials used, and warranty coverage. Nowadays, your ideal persona will likely place a high stock on brand longevity — a company’s ability to survive through tough times.
We suspect that this development in the buyer’s mentality can be attributed to the many economic dips and recessions over the past few decades. Even younger shoppers have seen their favorite brands go bankrupt and disappear within just a few years. Thus, a company’s ability to adapt while the rest of the world is financially unstable is something that customers value more and more.
Is your company relatively young? You’ll want to build your company’s story as far back as possible. Talk about activities and involvement in the community before you even became a company. Did your company start out in a small garage? What was the company’s original vision? You should include this information so that your leads will see and appreciate your long-term commitments and achievements.
Lastly, surviving a low point is one thing, but surviving a moment of success is equally important. The idea of “trending” can be something that a company needs to survive. Trending can actually kill a company sometimes: they get their 5 seconds in the viral spotlight, never to be heard from again. Thus, a company’s ability to survive beyond their trending moment is crucial.
Trend #3: Identify ‘Givens’ — and Don’t Focus on Them Too Much!
A “given” is a known, established fact that we don’t have to argue; everyone accepts it as true or useful. For instance, pretty much everyone at this stage is on board with the following ideas: “Renewable resources are good”; “Equal rights are for everyone”; “Terrorism should be stopped”; “Bullying is bad”.
In past years, your persona may have sought or identified with brands that were marketed along these thoughtlines. For example, given the choice between buying two shirts, a customer might choose the one that is “sustainably produced” rather than one that is not. In fact, they might have even been willing to pay a bit more money for the “green” product.
Nowadays, consumers are expecting products to be environmentally friendly as a matter of course. In other words, the idea has become a “given,” and therefore becomes less of a selling point. Thus, you may want to review your personas from time to time to see if any of their pain points have changed over time. Some of the issues that were novel just a few years ago are now pretty much ingrained into everyone’s consciousness — both consumers and businesses alike.
Learn how to identify what’s trending, and recognize when it’s starting to be oversaturated and absorbed into society’s general collective consciousness. This will allow your company to ditch stale ideas and to truly focus on marketing cutting-edge, groundbreaking ideas that really matter.
Crafting the perfect persona is an ongoing process. Much like a winning race car needs to be tuned throughout the race, take a few moments to “pit stop” your personas. This will ensure that you stay ahead of the pack and are coming in first place every time.
Our team happens to love building personas, let us know if we can play with you and help you craft your company’s personas.