Persona Development: The Art of Narrowing Your Target Market

Persona development is a crucial part of growing your business and it should be completed in the early stages of product development. A persona is defined as a fictional representation of an actual user or customer. Personas help a company identify their target market with a clear understanding of the customer’s goals and the features that appeal to them.

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Here are a few things you will want to consider when developing personas:

·         Demographics like sex, age, education, ethnicity and family status, profession

·         The problem you are solving by using your product 

·         Technical experience and expertise

·         Pain points and frustrations

How to Define Your Personas

It’s pretty simple to get a grasp on what persona development is. However, actually defining and developing these personas is a bit more challenging. Here are some steps you can take to make the process easier.

Create User Groups: A product may appeal to different types of people. Start your persona development by figuring out the types of people that are most likely to use your product and putting them into 4-7 user groups.

Existing Users: If you already have an existing user base, you can work with those customers to identify key demographics, characteristics, and buying habits. Look for patterns that are common to each user by channeling feedback via your web site, reviews, calls, focus groups and purchase records to determine what each person is looking for in your products. Incentives are a great way to solicit feedback, such as an online survey regarding your products and services. 

Potential Users: If your products are so new that they haven’t been used by customers, there are still ways you can work on developing a persona. You can brainstorm personas using the product’s goals and purpose as a starting point. You can also leverage stakeholders to glean information on who they believe their customer base will be.

Once you have this all of this information, you can use your imagination to work on stories that will appeal to each group.

Benefits of Persona Development

Persona development can benefit a company in many ways. Here are some examples of how they can work for you.

They Give Stakeholders a Means to Discuss Features of the Design: Personas can be valuable if you have multiple stakeholders who have different ideas of what design features should be developed first. You can use the personas to walk them through the process of interacting with your product to determine pain points which will clarify the priorities that need to be addressed.

They Provide an Understanding of the User Group: Personas help businesses to identify their customer base, map the customer journey, and create stories that will appeal to their customers.

They Help to Develop Site Architecture: Once personas are created, the team can walk through user scenarios to determine the optimal placement of content and make sure it is accessible and engaging to the customer group. This can be a money saving step as it will identify any missteps in advance allowing companies to save money that may be spent on making changes after the product is launched.

Persona development is a great way to figure out who your product will appeal to and the needs of your customer in advance. This is a vital step that will help your product to sell and save you time and money in the long run.