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What is a buyer persona?

Updated: Mar 4, 2019

Penciling in little bubbles on a standardized test seems simple enough.

Knowing which one to fill in isn't always easy...

But, simple, yes.

And while most students found it simple, many of my auditorium-sitting, standardized test-taking years were filled with frustration.

Why? I'm left-handed. And auditorium seats are mainly equipped with only right-handed flip-up desks.

It wasn't until my 10th grade that I experienced pure bubble-filling freedom...

It seemed as though someone had realized that *gasp* not all students are right-handed. So, they put left-handed flip-up desks on the left side of the auditorium aisles. It was a joyous day, indeed!


My school had an uncommon number of left-handers. It was first come, first serve. The tension that would build in my body in preparation to fight for my seat was real. And sometimes, the teachers wouldn't even let us switch to a left-handed seat because... they were mean, I guess.

So, why am I telling you this?

What does this have to do with a buyer persona?

And heck, am I gonna give you a free resource? (yes.)

Well, let me explain like this:

Have you ever heard of a client avatar?

It's a fictional character that represents your dream client or customer.

It's usually made up by people sitting around tables not talking to their clients or customers. Inevitably, they have a *light bulb moment*... 

... and it all goes downhill from there. The client avatar turns into a replica and ends up looking more like the person who created it and less like the client or customer they're supposed to be serving.

But, a buyer persona...

A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your dream customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.

When creating your buyer persona you consider behavior patterns, motivations, and goals. (Hubspot has an excellent free resource for creating a buyer persona. It's fun too :)

It's more scientific, less guesstimation.

And, it appears to me that whoever first came up with those flip-up desks in auditoriums, and all the manufactures and everyone down the assembly line were right-handed! No one stopped and said, "wait, what about people who write with the other hand?"

Same goes for right-handed scissors, too!

The biggest marketing problem facing coaches, entrepreneurs and business owners isn't ad-spend or list size. It's making products for themselves, instead of for their clients.

When you make something your client wants and talk to them the way they want to be talked to, your something sells itself.

So the lesson here today is that your dream client isn't going to be a spitting image of you. That's where your business owner / marketer / researcher hats come in.

We've gots to lerrrn about who our dream client is. What they want. The things that drive them. Quirks about them. Just like you would a best friend. 

Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle company Goop is a great example of this. They tripled their year-on-year revenue in 2017 and attributes a large part to taking interest andtreating their buyers as their "friends".

So, <<First Name>>, it's time for you to make some new friends...

Don't play the guessing game when it comes to the success and sales of your business. Ain't nobody got time for that.

Be intentional about who you want to serve and who you don't.

And then go all in for them like the crazy-fan Dad at peewee soccer games. #StopEmbarassingMeDAAAADDD

Because, deep down, they love it.

Gratitude from a Lefty,


PS: I never actually hit anybody for a left-handers spot in the auditorium. But in my mind, I coulda sent them into next week *shakes fist*

PPS: Here's the buyer persona tool, one more time.


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