Developing Personas

Goals

To assist with the creation of a workshop, understand the best practices regarding creating/developing personas to use in advertising, and determine any disruptive trends in the field.

Early Findings

Developing Personas

  • Members of the Forbes Agency Council provided several considerations for developing effective customer personas including distinguishing between users and buyers; don't get distracted by customer exceptions; get input from both customers and the sales team; define why personas are needed; use Facebook insights to obtain data; know your customers' pain points; treat personas as hypotheses; and create multiple personas.
  • Annemarie Duran, a member of the Forbes Agency Council provides the following guidance for developing customer personas: analyze customer data and trends; research industry problems; talk to customers and potential customers; and regularly update personas.
  • Effective personas should include both demographic and psychographic data. Demographic data might include "age, sex, income level, marital status, education level, (and) geographic location." Psychographic data helps to understand the values, attitudes, and aspirations of customers.

Advertising Disruption

  • Artificial intelligence (AI) allows for interactions with customers that allows for learning about that specific customer without having to rely on a persona. This personal knowledge is valuable and when successful could eliminate the need for customer personas.
  • Machine learning algorithms will allow for data collection that can allow companies to create exact personas of their actual customer base.
  • There is a move to create product personas instead of user personas. A product persona is the practice of describing a brand or product in terms of the qualities it would have if it were human.

Proposed next steps:

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We propose continuing the research to expand on the information already found in order to determine 3-5 best practices that should be followed to create effective customer personas. For each best practice, we propose describing the practice; explaining why it is considered a best practice; and providing at least one example of a company that has implemented the practice, along with why they did that and what the results were.
Additionally, we propose expanding on and/or adding to the disruptors found in the initial research. We propose including 3-5 disruptors in the area of advertising personas to include details on what the disruption is, how it is impacting advertising personas, and details on at least one company at the forefront of the disruption. For the company, we propose including details on how and why they implemented the disruptive practice, along with details on the results of their actions.