Digital marketing is a rapidly changing environment. New tricks and tips come up regularly while trends change. Among the tactics that turned out to be highly beneficial is the utilization of user personas.
If you have been in marketing for a while, then you have probably heard the term “user persona” before. It is a term that is not solely used in marketing but also in business, design, and other areas as well. Putting it plainly, a persona is a fictional character that represents your users. It also contains information valuable for marketing, sales, and technology.
In this article, we dig into the benefits of user personas in SEO performance. Read below to find out what they are, how to create, and how to implement these personas in your digital marketing strategy.
What Are User Personas?
The first step of our journey is to explain the term “user persona.” The predominant definition of the term refers to it as the representative of your user. To define, a user persona is the archetypical user that represents a wider group of users. Hence, it contains characteristics, goals, and behaviors that are common among your users.
Typically, a buyer persona takes the form of a two-page document. In this document, you can find a detailed description of a representative user of your services. To make it clear, this description contains valuable insights into your customers that help you optimize your services and processes. Even though user personas differ per industry, some of the most common sections are the following.
In this section, the demographic information is presented. The most commonly seen information includes age, occupation, status, and location.
In certain cases, the character plays an important role in the buyer’s behavior. Thus, some industries include personality traits such as friendliness, smartness, and flexibility.
What motivates the presented user in general? Could it be social recognition? Maybe power? In any case, this can be used to transfer your message effectively.
The general goals of the user are listed in bullet points. An example can be to reduce time in using something or even change a habit.
Frustrations of the user are also presented in bullet points. This is your chance to see the problem your service might solve.
Here you describe the familiarity of the user with technology. What devices does the buyer use? How familiar are they with the technology of your services?
A short bio includes the above-mentioned information in a paragraph. By writing a story about the user, you give life to the data you collected.
How To Create User Personas
Now that we have a better understanding of what a user persona is, let’s make one for our business, shall we?
The process of creating user personas can be challenging. It requires a process of gathering and filtering information. However, this has to be done in a way that the gathered information creates a pattern of behavior towards your service. In this way, you will create the image of your users and act accordingly.
To shed more light on this, the steps of persona development are the following.
1. Collect Information
The initial and most important step of the process is data collection. To achieve the most accurate results, you need solid user persona research. This can be done in several ways and methods depending on the industry. Some of the most common are:
- Field Research
2. Filter Information
By default, the gathered raw data are of low value without proper filtering and visualization. Hence, in this stage, you might consider analyzing the information you obtained from your research. During your analysis, focus on patterns that explain certain behavior. In this way, you will be able to proceed to persona creation and understand your audience.
3. Create Personas
In this final step, you will put the analysis and persona ideas into action. To explain, you can use the filtered gathered information to create a visualization of the described user. This can be done in one to two pages. Make sure to include at least the sections we presented above.
Implementing Buyer Personas In Your SEO Strategy
Now that you have created your own user personas, it is time for action! The implementation phase can also be tricky, but if you follow the general SEO tips, then you will succeed.
As we previously mentioned, business personas are the representation of your main target groups. They contain valuable insights that will help you transfer your message successfully. By definition, these valuable insights can be applied to your SEO efforts in three different ways.
Tailor Your SEO Efforts To Your Personas
Tailoring your SEO efforts to your personas should be in the initial phases of your strategic marketing plan. While building your plan, you might want to consider the audience you are addressing. Let’s not forget that this audience includes your potential customers.
Hence, take into consideration the personas you have created before you start building your plan. In this way, you will manage to optimize your SEO efforts and achieve the best possible performance.
To enhance even more your SEO initiatives, consider creating digital and non-digital user persona examples. In detail:
A digital persona represents your online customer. So, it explains their buying journey and overall behavior towards your services. It offers valuable insights to help you optimize your website and increase your revenue.
This persona goes beyond the boundaries of technology. It provides you with information regarding the real-life customer. Even if you offer only online services, this persona can still help you with information about general buying behavior and motivations.
Optimize Keyword Research
If you have been in marketing for a long time, then you know the value of solid keyword research. It is the compass of an SEO marketer. To clarify, keyword research is the process of searching and finding valuable keywords to target with your content. Ranking high on these keywords will often offer valuable organic traffic and potential leads.
Generally, keyword research is developed in three stages. These are brainstorming, filtering, and implementation. Let’s dive deeper into the stages below and explain how buyer personas help in each one.
Brainstorming is the initial stage of keyword research. In this phase, the marketing team gathers together to decide on which keywords or search queries they should focus. The decision is usually the outcome of a thorough competitor analysis and market research. Hence, it is important to use every information on users to decide which keywords to target.
The importance of customer personas in the brainstorming phase is vital. In order to decide which keywords to target, you need to know what your target group is searching for. To put it plainly, you need to understand who your users are. These insights are presented in a user persona. Therefore, by applying user persona keywords in the brainstorming phase of your keyword research, you ensure the accuracy of search queries decided.
Now that you have your excel filled with valuable keywords, you need to filter them. Find patterns and categorize them accordingly. In this way, you will be able to decide which marketing initiatives should target which keywords.
Buyer personas are vital in the filtering process as well. The insights provided on your users can define which categories of keywords are important for your success. That said, you can sort keywords to target different personas effectively. For example, some users might be looking for tips and strategies or how-to guides on X topic. Also, other users might be looking for reviews, comparisons, or the best tools to do the X thing.
As you can understand, you can group keywords based on the buyer’s journey (awareness stage, consideration stage, purchase stage).
You have uncovered the important keywords and filtered them according to the insights of your user personas. Now it is time to put them to action. In this final stage, you implement the keywords into your content marketing strategy. This is also the beginning of your marketing funnel for conversions on your website.
Can user personas affect the implementation phase? Well, yes but indirectly. Since you have created the landing pages for your target group, you might want to see how they work right? That is when the personas come into play. The insights you collected in the personas will guide you in creating your Go to Source