Finding success through buyer personas

September 18, 2017 by Kyle Johnson

A team of advisors work to identify their firm

about the author:

Kyle Johnson

Revenue operations lead

Kyle provides revenue and sales analysis for all Advicent go-to-market teams. These analytics optimize Advicent pipeline forecasting, marketing strategies, and leveraged media channels to improve efficiency of sales operations. Kyle is interested in combining his three passions: tech, data analytics, and marketing, to drive success.

As Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart, stated, “There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.”

The customer is the most important person to your business and yet they have no voice in your decision making process. Creating buyer personas for your business builds a knowledge center for your business to reference for key decisions. Knowing the buyer is critical to the success of your business because the business can make effective decisions based upon the ultimate boss: the customer. Creating buyer personas allows you to identify your buyer’s needs.

Defining buyer personas

What attracts individuals or businesses to buy a product or service? People and businesses buy products or services because they need to solve a problem. For high-net-worth (HNW) advisors, clients engage with them for expertise on estate plans, tax plans, investment management, or a number of other services. In the case of Advicent, for example, the buyer is solving the problem of efficiently serving HNW clients. Creating buyer personas enables your business to understand why your customers buy from your business. Understanding the why informs every aspect of your business, guiding everyone in the same direction.

Businesses may also have multiple buyer personas. For example, HNW advisors should have a buyer persona specifically for entrepreneurs and a different one for medical professionals, as these buyer personas have different buyer needs. Understanding different buyer needs can help you differentiate your business by providing services that meet the buyer need of a specific persona. The different buyer personas allow you to personalize messaging to each persona based on importance of the buyer need to that persona. Below is a quick exercise to build your buyer personas.

Identifying your own buyer personas

Using this worksheet, let us walk through building the buyer personas for HNW advisors. First, as stated above, brainstorm a list of the different personas you engage with; examples of these are lawyers, medical professionals, senior executives, and entrepreneurs. Now, use the worksheet to fill in the attributes for each attribute. Get into the mind of the buyer and thing about what situations that profession will come across. For example, medical professionals are more likely to have school debt than a senior executive.

Performing the buyer persona analysis will put the customer at the center of your business. The customer is the most important person to your business and they are not present in any of your meetings. Use buyer personas as a way to create an understanding of your buyer throughout the organization. Train all your new employees on the buyer persona. Make sure all your decisions are focused on helping the buyer.

To learn how financial planning technology will help you provide more value to your clients, click here.