Create A Profitable Content Customer Persona Today
Creating a content persona is the second step in building a formalized content strategy. You need to understand your audience in order to make relevant, valuable content that converts readers to buyers. If you intimately understand your reader, you can attract a profitable product purchaser in tandem.
Your target audience helps you strategize how to create and publish content that reaches relevant viewers.
If you don’t have an ideal content persona in mind, you could spend your entire marketing budget attracting a reader that will never convert to a customer.
This doesn’t mean that all readers are buyers, though. However, all readers have potential for conversion in some way—whether as a sale, an influencer, or social proof.
Identifying your target audience ensures your content engages the right people at the right time with the right sales potential.
How do you create a content persona that will see the greatest return on investment for your business?
What is a content customer persona?
A “content customer persona” is the ideal person who will be reading, viewing, and following your content.
A content customer persona is not necessarily the same as your buyer persona or ideal customer. However, you want to ensure that the two overlap or build on one another in some way. If your content reader doesn’t convert, you’re wasting marketing money without seeing a return.
Nevertheless, it’s possible that your readers won’t all be direct buyers. Some content readers and viewers might be potential partners, influencers, or decision makers who can spread the word with potential buyers.
This generally means your ideal content target is broader than your ideal customer target.
How many content personas do you need?
There are three “circles” of content sharing. This means you want to make three types of content personas.
1. First circle: brand fans
The first circle is filled with those individuals close to your business. These tend to be employees, loyal customers, and investor partners. They are engaged readers and buyers who happily spread your brand message. They believe in your brand, so a simple call to action will easily bring them to share your content.
When targeting this audience, you want to focus on engagement and repeat sales.
2. Second circle: fan friends & influencers
The second circle is filled with the friends of those in the first circle. They see the brand fans’ posts and shares of your content, and that social proof is beginning to convince them of your product or service. They’re consistently seeing your brand name in front of them, and they’re at the stage where they’re deciding whether or not to invest in your brand.
This is a critical circle. These are your potential customers. Great content can win them over; poor content will lose them. Focus here for impressions and conversions.
3. Third circle: external connections
The third circle includes the connections from the second circle. These individuals don’t have a prior connection with your brand, so these are new impressions. This is where you can gain new leads that you can continue to convert.
Think about each circle separately.
What does the typical brand fan look like? What are their demographics and psychographics? Why are they so loyal to your brand?
Then consider how the brand fans extend further to the second circle. How do your brand fans share your content with their connections? How do their friends respond to this content? How can you make your brand fans include a call to action to their own friends?
From there, how can you improve the content experience of the second circle to extend out further to the third circle? Who in the third circle is most likely to move through your sales funnel?
Note: Focus on the brand fans. The deeper and wider your first circle, the greater your second circle—which improves sales. The greater your second circle, the greater the impressions and leads you get from the third circle.
What does a content persona look like?
When creating a content persona, you want to be as specific as possible. For example, “women aged 18-55” is too broad a content persona. These sorts of demographics are only the foundation.
Instead, specify the behaviors and thought processes as well: “women aged 18-55 who want eco-friendly clothing because it’s better for their health.”
This is specific not only because you’re defining that the women want eco-friendly clothing but also because it defines their motivation: they’re purchasing eco-friendly for their health (as opposed to for the environment or social impacts, for example).
This specificity helps you narrow your content to be highly relevant and significant.
You’ll create three personas for each circle. Be sure to “name” each persona for clarity and ease of use moving forward. These names can be as simple as brand fan, fan friends, influencers, and leads or you can make them more specific like “Yogi Girl” and “Yogi Girl Friends.”
Ask the following questions when considering each persona. Talk in “I” statements as if you were the individual within each circle to help you better understand where they’re coming from.
Below we’ll go through an example of examining the mindset of your customer and how your brand could respond.
1. What does their world look like?
They say: “I love yoga, but I don’t have the money to spend on yoga studios.”
Brand response: Our content teaches individuals how to do yoga at-home with minimal cost investment in equipment or apparel.
Notice how the brand response would be different if the customer persona’s motivation was instead that they don’t have the time to go to a yoga studio.
2. What is their intrinsic motivation? Why are they reading your content (and later buying your product)?
They say: “I want to do yoga so I can live longer for my family.”
Brand response: Our content focuses on family-friendly yoga and spirituality for the whole family.
3. What do they already have access to?
This question brings you closer to your brand differentiator. What kinds of content do they already have access to with your competitors? Be specific about how your content will provide unique information and tone.
They say: “I watch YouTube videos of 30 to 60 minute yoga exercises.”
Brand response: We provide funny videos with yoga poses; we offer 1-minute meditative poses; we provide cooking recipes for post-yoga.
4. Why are they resistant to your content or brand?
Consider why they might not be interested in your content, so you can proactively overcome this potential limitation.
They say: “I don’t have the experience to do yoga at-home.”
Brand response: We bring in free live-training sessions and expert trainers for beginner to advanced levels.
5. What will make them engage with your content?
Along with your differentiator, why will this persona be interested in your content. How can you give the viewer what they want?
They say: “I like learning new yoga poses.”
Brand response: We offer a free email course of different yoga poses and recipes each day.
6. What kinds of content do they most respond to? Why?
Consider how the customer wants value provided to them. Do they want videos, blogs, podcasts, images, infographics, or other content?
7. How often do they want to interact with your content?
This helps you understand the frequency and consistency you’ll release content. Learn more about content consistency here.
8. Where will they interact with your content?
Where does this persona hang out online? This helps understand which platforms will be most relevant to publish your content.
9. How will they interact with your content?
Are they more likely to like, comment, or share? Are they more likely to move further in the sales funnel after watching a video or reading a blog?
Overall, consider how this persona will interact with your brand and progress further through your content.
10. How can you encourage further encouragement?
Once the customer is convinced of your brand, how can you use your content to bring them a stronger call to action that pulls them through the funnel? Consider what your CTA will look like for this persona.
A content customer persona helps you direct your content to relevant, applicable viewers. This is the strongest way to ensure a return on your marketing investment for your formalized content plan.
Are you ready to create a content persona?
Download our FREE worksheet: Who Is Your Target Audience?
This will help you define your content personas to start building a profitable content marketing strategy this week.
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