Buyer Persona Research & Development: Getting to know and understand your b2b buyers

Personas are descriptive summaries or characterizations of key customer groups. Developing personas can help to really bring your target audiences to life, and inform your strategies for meaningful, tailored propositions and engagement.

Bringing your buyers to life through the use of buyer personas can help your organization to:

  • Make better choices about who to target or focus resources on
  • Talk to prospective customer groups in ways that are relevant and impactful
  • Guide on decisions on future propositions and marketing
 

Our approach: A 3-step process to buyer persona development

Buyer Persona Research & Development: Getting to know and understand your b2b buyers

1. Identify and understand distinct groups of buyers

We typically start buyer persona research with our clients in one of two ways:

  • Qualitatively, through internal workshops and/or in-depth research with your target audiences

  • Quantitatively, through a segmentation program to identify groups within your customer base or overall market which are statistically unique (be that based on firmographics, demographics, behaviors, attitudes or needs – or a combination of these factors)

Buyer Persona Research & Development: Getting to know and understand your b2b buyers

2. Transform each group (or segment) into a single persona

  • Once the distinct groups/segments have been identified, it is critical to develop a deeper understanding of their mindset, needs and behaviors. We conduct qualitative ‘deep dive’ research, building on our existing knowledge of each persona.

  • The benefit of personas over “faceless” groups or segments is that human beings resonate more strongly with something that is personified. The next stage therefore is to attribute each group to a single character, or person with their own name, image and identity. It is important to understand these personas as a “best fit” characterization – rather than a set of specific characteristics that every customer in that group must perfectly embody.

Buyer Persona Research & Development: Getting to know and understand your b2b buyers

3. Bring personas to life and introduce them to your organization

  • It is now time to put yourself in the shoes of each persona. What does a day in the life look like for them? What kind of suppliers do they like to work with? What are their ambitions within their job role?

  • Visualization and visibility of personas is crucial, to ensure they are embedded within your organization and deliver value to your teams. Popular examples of creative output include profile posters, interactive PDF guides, and video summaries. The ultimate goal here is that your personas are an ever-present reminder for your colleagues of the voice and experience of your different buyers.

 

Case study: Understanding the buyer journey and building personas and value propositions for Sodexo

Sodexo, a world-leader in food service and facilities management, places insight at the core of their marketing strategy. The company recognizes the importance of leveraging primary research to ensure that service offers meet the needs of the target market, with all their business decisions born out of research insights.

While regularly monitoring market and consumer trends, Sodexo partnered with B2B International to help them understand typical buyer journeys and personas across four different business units.

Find out how these insights were used to inform top of the funnel marketing strategies, sales engagement strategies during the purchase process, and ensuring that the ongoing relationship throughout the contract period is nurtured in order to encourage customer satisfaction and loyalty.

buyer persona research

 
 

Activation services: Helping you get the most out of your research investment

Persona Profiling
Bring your customers to life and gain a deeper understanding of their needs, challenges and behaviors in order to more effectively market to them.
Sales Battlecards
A “cheat sheet” used by account management and sales teams for engaging with a customer or prospect.
Interactive PDF Guides
Engaging and informative documents for use across your organization, to help teams across the business get to know each persona.
Video Summaries
Bite-sized animated or live action videos, that can be shared and viewed across your organization, to help introduce the personas and bring them to life.
 

B2B Insights and Viewpoints: What we’ve learned from doing buyer persona research

Get in touch to find out how you can benefit from buyer persona research and development