Do you know the people you’re selling to? If not, it could be a good indicator of why certain products aren’t selling.
In the conservatory business, knowing your ideal buyer could make all the difference between a top-selling conservatory, or a lemon that you’re unable to shift no matter how much time and effort you put into it.
After all, if you don’t know what your ideal buyer actually likes, how are you going to sell them a conservatory?
You probably know by now that making assumptions just isn’t good enough, which is why you need buyer personas.
Why use buyer personas?
Many people have asked me why some conservatories companies seem so much more successful at selling than others. In reality, it all starts by creating the perfect buyer personas.
In fact, recent statistics have shown that using buyer personas make websites 2 – 5 times more effective and easier to use for targeted visitors.
Below, I’m going to explain in greater detail why buyer personas are oh so important when it comes to selling conservatories.
What is a buyer persona?
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal buyer, that you have (hopefully) developed through research and previous customer data.
Your buyer persona should be representative of your ideal customer’s main challenges, goals and aspirations. What are their problems? What questions do they have? What are their main goals in life?
The more detailed your buyer persona becomes, the more you’re going to know about what really makes your ideal customer tick. In turn, this allows YOU to create the most effective, valuable content that will appeal specifically to them.
And if you don’t know the benefit of content marketing by now, read my recent blog post entitled ‘Why Conservatory Suppliers Need Content Marketing’.
Developing your buyer personas
When it comes to developing your buyer personas, the first thing you need to do is to understand more about your current/past customers.
As a conservatory supplier, you’ve probably had a lot of emails, letters and feedback from your previous customers, so gather as much information as you can, and look for anything they have in common.
Find out what they liked about your company, what they found important, and what aspects they commented on again and again. Pull some of the best quotes and use these to help build a better picture of your ideal buyer.
You can come up with simple, fun names that sum up each of your buyer personas, such as Dad Darren or Retired Rhonda. These are the people who are most likely to buy from you.
To gather more information and start building a much more detailed picture of Retired Rhonda, you can conduct customer surveys that ask specific questions that you need answered.
You don’t have to be limited to previous customers, either. Remember; asking people why they DIDN’T want to buy from you could be just as valuable – or more so – than only hearing from those who did.
TIP: Other ways to help develop your buyer personas could involve taking to social media to have a better look at your audience and who is interacting with you on there, conducting focus groups, and analysing your previous buyer data (if you have it) to look for things they all have in common.
What should a buyer persona look like?
As a rule of thumb, the more details, the better. But here are two very basic examples of the kind of picture you start painting with the information you collect.
Example 1*: Retired Rhonda is 65, and married. She likes gardening, and needs somewhere to entertain guests whilst making the most of all her hard work in the garden. She loves spending time with her grandchildren and husband, who likes peace and quiet to read the paper with his breakfast in the morning. She doesn’t have a large budget, and wants a versatile conservatory that will last at least 10 years. *
Example 2*: Dad Darren is 40 – 45, married with two kids. He has a hectic, busy work schedule so likes making the most of time at home with the family. He takes pride in his home and likes barbecues and entertaining in summer. He wants more space in his home, and somewhere light and airy he can relax at weekends. He wants his conservatory to be ideal for all the family to enjoy. *
**TIP: It’s important to note that a buyer persona should never simply be completed and filed away to look at in years to come – it should be constantly developing. **
So, as you learn more about your ideal customer, you can add to Retired Rhonda’s profile. You may find out she loves sitting in the sun with a good book, for example. If that were the case, she will probably want a conservatory that makes the most out of good weather.
Don’t be greedy
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to try to appeal to as many people as possible. I’d recommend using more than one buyer persona, but never water your message down with a one-size-fits-all approach; it just won’t work.
Another way of putting it; if you try to talk to everyone, you’ll end up talking to no-one.
People want to read about subjects that speak to, and resonate, with them. Focus on one buyer persona at a time, and do your best to solve their problems and answer their questions.
If you don’t know your audience, chances are you’re not going to be able to sell to them. This is true for any business or organisation, not just those selling conservatories.
Look at your previous customers, and take the time to really understand as much about them as possible. What do they like? What is important to them? What are the challenges you helped them overcome?
It can also be just as valuable to find out why someone chose NOT to buy from you. Was it the sales-talk on your website, or was your product information confusing?
Start gathering as much information as possible in order to build up a detailed picture of your buyer personas, and what makes them tick – just remember not to be greedy. Try to be as specific as possible for each persona.
Finally, good luck creating your perfect buyer personas!