Buyer Personas

How to Develop Products for Your Buyer Personas


Congratulations! You’ve done your research due diligence and created profiles of your Buyer Personas! This is a vital component of your marketing strategy, because buyer personas keep your marketing, messaging, and branding in harmony with market needs. But how can buyer personas help improve your product line too?

We’ve all seen it: that perfect ad that speaks right to your soul. The product looks sleek, the music is stirring, and the price is exactly where you want it. But how often have you succumbed to the allure of an ad and plopped down your money only to be disappointed in the product?

In the “good old days” before social media and ubiquitous online product reviews, brands could sometimes get away with sub-par products. But if you’re a fraud today, everyone on Facebook knows in a week. So perhaps those old days weren’t so good after all.

The best marketing in the world can’t compensate for a bad product. Your product IS your marketing if you build it right. But how do you build it right? Here’s how:

Build Products Around the Expectations of Your Buyer Personas

You can make products that live up to your marketing by deploying some clever concept test market research techniques.

First, build a survey response sample around each of your buyer personas. If your first persona is stay-at-home moms too busy to clean, find a sample of those consumers. You may be able to build a sample panel from your customer base, or you could use a panel service to find them.

Once you have samples for each persona group, send them to an online product concept survey where they can riff on your ideas.

After meeting your response quotas for each of your buyer persona samples, split out the responses by each sample to see how each responded to your concepts. You can use banners and cross tabs to accomplish this.

This is extremely valuable data now because it helps you build a roadmap for your new product development. While not every product can please every person in every persona group, you can now make trade-off decisions about which ideas to implement in your new product, which features it should have, and how it should be priced and packaged based on your buyer persona priorities.

This data from your concept test might also help tell you if you should try to create a product that pleases everyone a little, or split your product idea into separate product lines customized for each buyer persona group.

There are many ways beyond just message optimization that concept tests combine with buyer personas to illuminate your way forward. This approach can help you avoid very costly product launch failures as well as ensure your products always live up to your advertising.