1# Keep it real and keep it relevant - Persona Definition:
A lot of content is now delivered indirectly via digital channels but this doesn't negate the need to think about the human being at the receiving end. In fact, all and everything to do with your content should revolve around them. Their needs, wants, motivations and behaviors. B2B marketers are often guilty of ignoring this basic marketing, 101 principle and are happy to base their entire persona strategy on a 30 minute 'chat' with the Head of Sales. "Yeah, our customers just want to hear how great we are and get a jolly to the footy every now and then". No, Mr Head of Sales, that would be you.
Persona definition doesn't need to be an onerous or overly expensive process. We work with our clients to use the tools they already have in place to help them drive persona insight (web analytics, CRM, marketing automation, email platforms, etc). From here we can validate this through, more often than not, relatively basic customer/prospect research exercises. The end result is a well-informed, 3-dimensional and visual representation of the real people our clients need to engage with. We even go as far as printing out large format persona cards and slapping them up on the walls of our client's marketing departments as a continual reminder of the real people the content marketing strategy needs to embrace, inspire and add value to. Below are 3 examples of some persona 'top trump' cards that we've used as part of a client's content strategy.
If you get this right then you open up the big ticket opportunities around personalisation. For example, through a number of the leading CMS and marketing automation platforms (Sitecore, Sitefinity, Eloqua, etc) you can configure them to intelligently deliver persona driven, dynamic content based on how an individual is using a website, app or other digital property.