Use the data within your contact records to create or optimise your buyer personas objectively.
In a live workshop environment, some conjecture is necessary to create the first draft of any buyer persona. Experience, customer stories, anecdotes — all these things are leveraged by the people in the room to create a buyer persona they recognise and can relate to.
But because that first draft is subjective, it is important to validate your personas against objective data to make sure they are accurate and credible. Qualitatively, speaking with existing customers is an effective way of doing this.
Another is to use the data stored within your contact records in the HubSpot CRM.
Step 1: Review your buyer personas
How your company documents its buyer personas will vary. However those records look, wherever they are stored, review them to familiarise yourself with the information therein.
- Does any of the information look out of sorts?
- Are there any gaps in the buyer persona?
- Can you spot any areas where the information could be clarified or built upon?
Step 2: Visit the Contacts page
In the menu at the top of your HubSpot portal, click the ‘Contacts’ button, then select ‘Contacts’ from the drop-down menu.
This should take you to a list of your contact records.
If you already have buyer personas associated with your contacts (in which case you are likely reviewing them for accuracy or refreshing them), click ‘All filters’ and in ‘Contact type’, search by ‘Persona’.
A drop-down menu will then appear, in which you can select one of your persona types.
This will filter your list of contacts by contacts with the specified persona.
If you are creating personas for the first time (and therefore will not have persona labels associated with contacts in the CRM) search manually for known customers who Sales has identified as fitting the persona in question.
Step 3: Review contact records
Clicking into each contact, review the data therein.
- Does the contact record reflect the information in your draft persona?
- Can you use information from the contact record to fill in gaps in your buyer persona?
- Is there additional information in the contact record that can be used to clarify or expand upon the buyer persona where it is lacking detail? For example, do they tend to jump straight to your 'Contact Us' page and bypass your blog? Or do they take their time to research your team and other relevant content before they get in touch? Is there a pattern between how many times they are contacted by sales and how likely they are to progress to being a customer?
Step 4: Repeat for accuracy
The more contact records against which you can validate your persona, the more data you will be able to access, the more you will be able to refine your persona, and the more accurate it will be. This will make the persona more useful across your business operations.
It will also make your case for using the persona across business operations more compelling; as a semi-fictional representation of your target buyers, it is important that you can ground your personas in some form of customer data. This process achieves this.
Step 5: Edit persona
Returning to your persona document, edit/expand on it with the information you’ve gathered.
Author: Dr. Thomas Brown