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Having users means you’re doing something right — people are engaging with your product.
Needless to say, it’s important to identify who’s on the other side of the relationship if you plan to keep it that way. Businesses who aren’t in touch with their users are often helpless in understanding how they think and make decisions that affect purchasing power.
At the same time, a business that simply takes a guess at who their audience is or what they want may be completely off base — losing sales and customers as a result.
This is where creating user personas helps businesses better understand and reach their target audience. Of course, this is easier said than done, so we’ve put together this guide to help you craft user personas that actually move the needle.
Continue reading or jump to our infographic to learn how to utilize user personas for segmentation, user experience, and more.
User personas are semi-fictitious representations of your target customers. A user persona is framed from real customer discovery and researching the needs, goals, and observed behavioral patterns of a target audience.
User personas help you get inside the mind of your audience. They allow you to gain valuable insights and make decisions based on your users’ needs.
Personas are especially helpful for gauging the effectiveness of functional UX design through the eyes of a user.
It’s rare that a business only targets one audience. Chances are if you’re building your online presence, you’ll be trying to target a range of audiences. In this case, one user persona isn’t going to cut it — leaving you to decide how many you should actually create.
At first, a couple dozen user personas might seem like a good idea. But you’ll realize that the more you create, the more they begin to resemble one another.
We suggest creating no more than four user personas.
Most brands have audiences with characteristics that fall under a subset of primary personas. Having any more just makes user personas unnecessarily complicated and can lead to a lack of focus and a jumbled creation process. Because the goal of user personas is to gain insight into the bulk of your audience, four is more than enough.
As an example, let’s consider four basic personas of an app that allows users to schedule junk removal:
Using behavioral and psychographic data, a business can reflect on who their users are, what they need, and what may stop them from getting it.
Psychographic segmentation capitalizes on specific characteristics and psychological qualities that make a user unique. By dividing customers based on psychological factors like behaviors, personalities, lifestyles, values, and social status, businesses can then analyze the data to predict how a user will respond to targeted marketing campaigns.
As a result, behavioral and psychographic segmentation are incredibly valuable in not only understanding your users, but also compiling the correct data to build user personas. This can help your team take their mobile app marketing strategy to the next level.
User personas are extremely useful to grow and improve a business. They help uncover the different ways people search for, buy, and use products, so you can focus your efforts on improving the experience for real people through real data.
User personas benefit a business in several ways:
Create consistency across the business: User personas offer a company-wide understanding of your users, putting everyone on the same page. Across the board, personas create a consistent and specific understanding of each target group of customers within your company.
Signal user behavior: By gaining insight into the backgrounds of user personas, you’ll have a better understanding of where your real users spend their time, where they obtain information, and which social networks they thrive in. This information allows you to target and promote your products or services in places where they will actually be seen.
Help with user-focused reasoning: So, you and your team have brainstormed a service or offer that you think will be valuable to your users, but is it really something that they want? You might think your idea is genius, but what if you spend time brainstorming and it’s not something that’s actually in demand? User personas help eliminate wasted time and resources by clearly focusing on the needs of the user.
Improve design and development workflow: Not only do personas allow you to gain knowledge of user behavior and create consistency across your business, but they’re incredibly valuable in enabling design and product managers to create better products, services, designs, and UX. Better development guarantees your ability to suit the needs and preferences of your real users.
Define product positioning: Because you’ve utilized user personas in the brainstorm and developmental phases, you’ll be in a better place to position your product when it comes to promotion. User personas arm you with research to face the challenges and problems that come with product positioning.
In short, user personas allow you to operate more effectively as a business all the way down to clearer decision making and positioning.
Not sure where to start? Here are some basic features to include in every user persona.
There are user persona basics, then there are components that create an exceptional persona that will not only help you understand your target audience but allow you to create better products for them. After you’ve gone through the basic checklist of elements to include in your persona, it’s time to apply these expert tips.
User personas are a key tool in exploring the minds of audiences and helping businesses make decisions that accurately reflect user needs. At first read, fictitious personas can seem like busy work. While they do involve conducting research, in the end, they help satisfy your customers’ needs and pain points.
Learn more about how customer segmentation and user data can help you build better user personas through CleverTap’s intelligent mobile marketing platform.
See how today’s top brands use CleverTap to drive long-term growth and retention