As a small business owner, I know that marketing can be overwhelming as you try to juggle a multitude of responsibilities. The time and resources you invest into your marketing have to produce as much "bang for your buck" as possible. That's my goal with this post - read on. 

What is a buyer profile?

You may have heard the term "buyer profile" (or "buyer persona"), but wasn't quite sure what it meant. (And if you've never heard of it, no worries!) It sounds like a pretty sophisticated marketing concept, but it's actually something I believe every business owner should have. 

A buyer persona, according to HubSpot, is a "semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers." 

The concept is that a buyer persona allows you to understand important characteristics about your ideal customer (your buyer), to help you market and sell better to that target customer. The more you know about your ideal customer, the more specific you can be in your marketing, helping you develop an emotional connection with that prospective buyer and increasing the likelihood of purchase. 

Why do you need a buyer profile?

If I don't have you convinced yet that you need a buyer profile for your business, keep reading. A buyer profile dives into not only demographic information about your target customer, but also details about their values, motivations and goals. Does your target customer:

  • Value luxury or living frugally?
  • Prefer email communication or hate technology?
  • Have a large budget to spend or need to justify every penny?

There are countless questions to ask, each one helping you understand that potential customer better. As you can imagine, knowing the answers just to the questions above would greatly influence how you market and sell to that potential customer. 

Also consider that you likely have multiple primary "buyers" for your product or service—perhaps two or three distinct types of buyers. Creating a buyer profile for each one allows you to speak personally to each type of buyer when marketing, rather than relying on a one-size-fits-all approach.

Once you have a buyer profile, all your sales and marketing efforts get easier. You're able to better target your ideal prospects, you can send out more effective, custom marketing to them, and you have a framework for all strategic sales and marketing initiatives. Putting in a little work to create your profile now is invaluable as your business continues to grow. 

Ready to get started?

The first step is identifying your target/ideal customer, and whether you have a few. You should do this exercise for just one at a time, but it's important that you know in advance who your different buyers are. 

Next, start a discussion with key people in your business about that target customer. Include an array of people in the discussion to get the best information.

To get you on the right track, download this FREE Buyer Profile template, including more instructions for how to conduct a successful discussion around creating your profile.