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Buyer Personas vs. Audience Personas vs. Customer Personas

Establishing the correct personas is extremely important to marketers or business owners alike. By understanding your buyer personas, audience personas and customer personas, you’ll be able to create the right content for the right people at the right time. Sometimes though, people tend to look at the different types of personas and get overwhelmed. Fear not! We broke it all down for you.

Audience Personas
(The ones just reading)

Your audience personas are going to represent anyone who may be reading your blog, watching your videos or favoriting your tweets. For example, we have a blog post about 4th of July Fireworks in Bergen County. The audience persona here could be a 45-year-old Bergen County resident looking for a place to see fireworks on the 4th of July with his wife and kids. They probably will never need a marketing agency, but he is part of our audience because he is reading our (awesome) content.

Now let’s say this fireworks enthusiast likes the blog post so much that he shares it with his friends on Facebook. As it turns out, one of his Facebook friends is also interested in 4th of July Fireworks and happens to be looking for an inbound marketing agency to help his business.

Buyer Personas vs. Audience Personas vs. Customer Personas

Buyer Personas
(The ones looking for something)

So this business owner sees the fireworks link on his News Feed and clicks through to the blog post. He starts to look through other recent posts. Perhaps he’s been struggling with growing and marketing his business in the right way. If you’re thinking it…yes you are correct! He is an example of a buyer persona.

A buyer persona is your ideal customer, in our case it’s a mid-sized business owner looking to hire a marketing agency. You can have more than one buyer persona for your company, so don’t feel the pressure to lock in on one specific one. That being said, you always want a blog post to target one specific persona at a time. That way you can be sure you are writing content that resonates with that person.

Now, back to our example. He continues to explore DSM website and really likes what he sees (especially the intro posts for the new Summer 2015 interns). He eventually finds the inbound marketing page, reads through and requests a consultation.

Buyer Personas vs. Audience Personas vs. Customer PersonasCustomer Personas
(The ones breaking out the checkbook)

Finishing off this fictional scenario, the business owner has now signed on as a client and moves into a customer persona. When writing content for a customer persona, think about what would benefit current clients. As a DSM client, he may now be interested in reading content like How to Run a Year End Inbound Marketing Review. This is content that could apply to our customer persona instead of someone who may just be visiting our website to check out places to see fireworks on the 4th of July.

Have any other helpful advice for differentiating your personas?
Let us know in the comments!

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