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Who Will Buy My Product? Developing The Customer Persona

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Congratulations! You took that big idea you had and brought it to life. Now you have a real product. The world should be beating a path to your door, right? Not so fast. You’ve done a lot of work already to get to where you are, but there’s more to be done to get your product into the hands of the consumers who want it. The first step in the process is to determine who will buy your product. We’ll use a gaming app for our example. This app is a skiing simulation.

Identifying Your Target Market

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Hopefully, you’ve given some thought to your target customer before you developed the app, but maybe not. Even if you did, you want to ask yourself, ‘Who will this product appeal to?’ (Hint: the answer is not ‘everyone.’ Unless you’re selling air or water, there are some people who just won’t buy it. And that’s okay.) To help get your app to the customer, identify who that customer is. Are they male, female, or either? How old are they? Where do they live? What do they like to do, besides gaming? What other apps do they use? Once you have the answers to these questions, develop a buyer persona.

What is a Buyer Persona?

Who is your ideal customer? Moreover, who is your most likely or typical customer? There may be other types, but this is the one we’re going to focus on first. The buyer persona for our gaming app will be a male, aged 23, who lives in a suburb and works full-time in an office setting. He lives in an apartment with a couple of other guys, and they like to go camping and kayaking in the summer and skiing in the winter. They ski at least one weekend a month and take a week off in the winter to ski at a new area every year. The more detail you can include in your buyer persona, the better your chances of successfully promoting your gaming app.

Designing Buyer Personas

Clearly, this is not the only type of person who will buy your app, and the persona is not meant to be exclusive. It will just help you to visualise one person who is likely to want to buy your product, and that will help you figure out the best way to market it.

  • Before you start gathering information, imagine what kind of people you want to buy your products.
  • Use subscriptions and form capture tools to gleam details such as ages, locations, genders, and so on, so you can build a picture of who is interested in your product.
  • Do the same for actual purchases.
  • Build in feedback from your sales team.
  • Conduct outreach and surveys with potential customers and members of the public, even if they are online or people near your office.

Gathering data is one thing, but you need to know how to use it. So before you reach out to people, know what kinds of information you are looking for, and how you might apply the results. You are basically looking for flexibilities within your App, within other products, and within your marketing and sales teams.

One of the most important factors to look at when creating the buyer persona is to think about what other products this customer owns, and what they may consider buying if they purchase something other than your product. This will help you hone in on the true competition for your product, and will help you make smarter marketing decisions. Understanding the buyer persona for your new product will help you determine how to promote your product, where to sell it, and much more.

Occasionally we allow guest bloggers to contribute to our website where we believe their content ads good value for our audience. This post is an example of one of these guest posts. If you would like to contribute to our blog then email studio@lobsterdm.co.uk with your post and we will consider it for publishing. Our total audience including social media reach is over 5.5 million.

  • Ross Hall
    April 21, 2017 at 9:17 am

    I’ve been using personas in design for donkeys years and they work pretty well. Done properly they focus people on market segments way better than any number of “bland” segmentation reports.


    I’ve worked on a few too many projects where persons have been created ad nauseum to settle arguments, cater for requirements that don’t really exist or simply because people don’t understand them.

    Rule of thumb I work to is if you’ve got more than 3 or 4 chances are you’ve either not segmented your markets properly or you don’t understand your customers.

    • Russell Davies
      April 26, 2017 at 6:43 pm

      Thanks for your comment Ross. I agree, too many personas would be counterproductive.

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