Knowing your customer is only the first step. To really get a return on your market research investment, you need to create marketing that connects with the motivations, drivers and experiences of your buyers.
Use your personas
To produce effective marketing campaigns, you need to know who you’re talking to. A set of buyer personas aligned to your customer segmentation is a great resource for in-house marketers and third-party agencies alike. Your personas are ‘pen-portraits’ of fictional customers who represent your typical buyers in each segment.
A little imagination is required to really make a persona credible as a character, but it should be firmly grounded in reality too, backed by experience data gathered from a range of real-life customers via surveys, interviews, CRM knowledge and sales figures.
Useful personas will also include detail about business-relevant areas such as content consumption habits, social media use, pain points and preferences and how the individual views you as a company.
Tailor your marketing to your customers
Because your personas offer a relatable, human illustration of your customer segments, they make it easier to create marketing campaigns that really speak to the people you want to reach.
You can use marketing to address objections, create affinity with your brand through shared values, anticipate their requirements (such as seasonal events or industry-wide trends) and suggest products and services that might interest them based on their past choices.
When creating a campaign, make the relevant persona part of your brief. What questions does it answer? What pain points does it address, and what drivers does it connect with? Bring the persona in at every stage of the process, including creative and approval/sign-off stages.
Create a cycle of ongoing improvement
Having based your personas on survey data from each of your market segments, you are in a great position to test and re-test your campaigns using those same research panels. Create new surveys or interview scripts that test the effectiveness of your campaigns and individual pieces of collateral, benchmarking against the assumptions you made about your personas.
With this approach you can not only optimise your marketing strategy and carry out ad testing on individual assets, you can also keep your personas up-to-date with minimal effort so that they grow and evolve along with your business.