By Lauren Nettles

On a recent episode of the SmartBug® on Tap podcast, we dove into buyer personas—but not in the traditional sense. We’re talking about who your buyer personas are outside of their nine-to-five day job.

We’re answering questions like:

  • Why should marketing professionals be interested in your buyer personas in their five-to-nine lives?
  • How can we as marketers appeal to the entire persona?
  • Who is the person behind the persona?

Let’s dive in. 

 

A Personalized Experience Affects the People Behind Your Buyer Persona

When it comes to understanding how to appeal to the person behind your personas, we have to mention an incredible session from Inbound, HubSpot's annual conference that's geared toward revenue leaders in marketing, sales, and client services. 

In that session, Nina Butler, Director of Event Experience at Alyce, cited a recent study by Adobe in which 66 percent of respondents say that encountering an un-personalized experience will stop them dead in their tracks in their buyer experience. 

People are not buying for the product; they're buying for that experience. They're buying because they're interested and they're engaged in that moment. 

We can all agree that “personalization” doesn’t end with your job title—there are a lot more aspects that make you you, from your hobbies to whether your family is made up of a bunch of kids or a bunch of cats and more! Learning to tap into those five-to-nine passions can turn an ordinary industry event into something that really motivates your clients. 

Free Guide: Mapping Content for Different Buyer Personas

Where to Start Buyer Persona Personalization

If you already have your buyer personas documented, it’s time to add the next layer by asking questions about the personal passions outside that persona’s work life.

If you’ve done any work on your buyer personas before, you’re familiar with the idea of buyer persona surveys. Why not expand your surveys to find out what their personal passions are and then start to segment your clients and prospects into their like-minded interests?

Let’s take a look at some of SmartBug’s key personas as an example: Mary the Marketer, Strategic Steve, and Producer Patty. We know their job titles, content preferences, and the challenges they face in their nine-to-five lives. But maybe Mary the Marketer is also Mary the Magician, Strategic Steve is also Saxophone Steve, and Producer Patty is also Ping-Pong Patty. 

Besides really wanting to invite all these people to a party, what else can you do as a marketer to start to understand and appeal to these personas as full people? 

Let’s lean into that party idea for a moment—how can you make client happy hours into something really special? Rather than a typical meet-and-greet, maybe you can bring a mixologist who teaches the group to make a specialty cocktail (this works virtually, too—you can send out cocktail kits to participants beforehand!). 

Of course, it doesn’t have to be happy-hour-focused—you can explore doing kind-friendly content like a storytelling or coloring session for kids in a virtual breakout room for your family-oriented persona segments, for example.

Besides providing the original event value of getting to know your clients and prospects, hosting a truly fun, not-business-focused event helps people think of your company as somewhere people genuinely enjoy themselves with other people they are eager to spend more time with.

Understanding a bit about how our personas’ lives expand past job titles and content reading habits helps remind us that there’s a person behind every persona interaction. And we really encourage you to go out there and discover who that person is! 

Listen to the full podcast episode here to learn more. Enjoy!

About SmartBug on Tap

SmartBug on Tap delivers weekly conversations and thought leadership from SmartBug Media on demand generation, marketing automation, brand loyalty, and digital strategy. If you’re looking for expert, game-changing thoughts on digital marketing, your search is over.

Each episode will feature topics such as lead generation, account engagement, brand loyalty, inbound marketing, sales enablement, PR, demand generation, marketing automation, paid media, web design and development, revenue growth, digital strategy, ROI, and more.

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Lauren Nettles

About the author

Lauren Nettles is an Account Manager at SmartBug Media—an expert at all things inbound marketing. She has a wide range of content, copy, and marketing strategy experience, from small local businesses to huge gaming companies and international publishing houses. At SmartBug, her focus is on empowering clients with the results, knowledge, content, data, and tools to make their business the best it can be. Read more articles by Lauren Nettles.

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