Focus and Mastery: Buyer Personas

What Are They And How Can They Help You Succeed?

Last week I got the question: “will this blog help us use Facebook as a tool?”

Yes, a resounding yes.

And we’ll be starting from the very beginning with something called buyer personas.

What is a buyer persona?

A buyer persona is a fictionalized, generalized character that reflect the values, goals, and behaviors of your real and potential customers. The applications for having one of these personas defined for your business is wide and varied: segmenting email listscreating more effective marketing campaigns, and building better websites just to name a few.

Beginning with personas adds time and money upfront but saves a ton in the long-run as well as increasing the overall effectiveness of any marketing investment. Because we think they’re so valuable, I’ve begun making them a requirement before starting any new web project (website, blogging, social media marketing, etc.).

How do I create one these fancy “personas”?

To create a persona for your business we use checklists to help put ourselves in the shoes of your average customer and answer the questions commonly associated with their roles, goals, challenges, company, and more. It’s important that you answer these questions honestly and objectively.

It helps if you have previous customer testimonials or feedback to start with. Don’t worry if you don’t have any of that right now. Just go through the following questions as best you can with what you know right now. For our first persona we’re forming our first hypothesis. Later we can test that hypothesis with customer surveys and day-to-day feedback.

  1. Answer the following questions while imagining yourself as your favorite customer/client. Or if you don’t have a favorite and don’t have any idea what their answers would be, answer for yourself.
  2. Give your persona a fun catchy name (like Fashionista Felicia or Hardworking Harry)
  3. Look for ways to get to know your persona better
  4. Ask yourself what life would be like if you could have more of those personas coming to you for business.

Optional: Send me your persona(s) at and I’ll send you some tips on how to improve them.

Questions To Ask


  • What is your job role? Your job title?
  • What is a typical day?


  • What are you responsible for?
  • What does it mean to be successful in your role?


  • What are your biggest challenges?
  • How do you overcome these challenges?


  • What industry or industries does your company work in?
  • What is the size of your company (employees, revenue)?

Stomping Grounds:

  • How do you learn about new information?
  • What blogs or publications do you read?

Personal Background:

  • Age
  • Family
  • Education

Shopping preferences:

  • How do you prefer to interact with vendors (email, phone, in person)?
  • Do you use the internet to research vendors or products?

These are just a few of the questions you could be asking, so don’t stop here. Many of the links throughout this post will be helpful in finding more questions. The more questions the better.

Learn more. Do more. Be more.

– Matt