You Developed User Personas — Now What?

No doubt you’ve been urged by marketing leadership, your communications agency or both to develop user personas that represent who your buyers are and what their journey looks like.

Maybe you’ve heeded their advice, and dedicated resources to carefully research and flesh out half a dozen personas that provide the perfect portrait of your customer base.

Maybe it’s on your long to-do list, but you aren’t exactly sure where to start.

Either way, the success of personas hinges on your effective use of them. That’s particularly true when it comes to creating and distributing content that successfully resonates with your target audience segments.

Buyer Personas and Content Planning

Your personas should be front and center in your content planning process. From type to topic to tone to distribution, every piece of content should reference a specific audience segment, or persona.

Specifically, personas can:

Inform Content Types — Leverage your personas to determine the content types — whitepaper, video, blog or otherwise — most likely to be consumed and shared by any given audience segment. For example, you might determine video to be the most effective type for young adult audience segments. Or you might decide that infographics can best reach your least informed audience segment.

Inspire Content Topics — When you map out personas, you should identify common needs, interests and questions for each audience segment. This can be your first reference point when identifying relevant topics for future content.

Guide Content Tone — Personas can help you discover content tone and voice nuances between various audience segments. For example, let’s say you determine that a friendly, familial tone in first-person is the best fit for your brand enthusiast audience segment.

Drive Content Distribution — By considering personas in content distribution decisions, you can more effectively reach audience segments where they are. For each persona, determine their primary communication channels, whether that is email, print, Facebook, Twitter or other channel.

Buyer Personas in Action

Get ready to put your personas to action. Print them out and pin them to your office wall. Make note of them in content calendars. Share them with sales and customer service teams.

They’ll be highly valuable tools in creating content that’s engaging, relevant and consumed by your audience — if you let them.