Creating Personas

By | April 24, 2016

What are personas?
Personas are descriptions of people who embody the characteristics of typical website users and content consumers. They are fictional characters who are used to humanise specific sectors of the audience which interact with the content and, therefore, the brand.

Personas take into account the needs, attitudes and preferences of the audience and can be quickly and easily understood by companies. They are also extremely helpful in informing business, brand and marketing strategy and can be validated during discussions with site users.  In order to effectively define a range of personas there are some specific questions which should be asked, including:

  • What tasks do they undertake and why?
  • Do they have any specific pain points?
  • What would improve their experience?

How can personas be used?
Personas are a valuable tool for use in the creation of targeted and relevant content. They allow organizations to create content and user experiences which are meaningful, useful and informative for their own customers. Personas can also offer insights that lead to improved customer journeys, engagement and retention.

Who will use them?
Personas can be used by a number of functions within a business. These may include, for example:

  • Informing the creation of content which is on message and resonates with the audience.
  • Enabling marketing teams to develop empathy with the target audience, allowing them to craft campaigns that are more relevant in terms of concept and visual design.
  • When used in conjunction with customer journeys, teams can improve specific aspects of the user experience as not every persona will navigate their way through the site using the same path.
  • Being able to picture each persona makes it easier to create targeted content and guide customers through the site experience.

With an organisation-wide focus on personas, everyone has the same vision of the audience, defining the objectives, activities and needs of the customer to succeed in creating a consistent approach to varied, and often complex, content and scenarios.