A shop owner interacting with a customer.

Your marketing is essential to your business’ growth, but it needs to be focused. You can cast a wide net to get a few catches of the many fish in the marketing sea. That can be a functional strategy in some circumstances, but it is far more efficient and effective to aim your marketing towards certain target groups interested in your business’ products and services. To determine these targets, marketers create customer personas, which significantly improve the performance of all your ads. Targeted marketing is up to 5.3 times more effective for increasing click-through rates, nearly 40% of people prefer targeted ads, and targeted ads have shown to increase brand searches by 800%! Along with those conversions, these results will only increase your ROI even more, since you will spend less on target ads than on widescale, untargeted marketing. This guide will explain what customer personas are, how to create them, and how to use them in your marketing.

What are Customer Personas?

A customer persona is an imaginary person defined by certain demographics and characteristics of a key member of your current or desired target audience. Qualities that can define a customer persona are their interests, profession, finances, age, gender, language, locality, etc. These qualities need to be specific enough to define a subgroup of an audience, but also broad enough to reflect more than just one individual. Typically, a business will have multiple customer personas within its whole audience.

How to Define Your Customer Personas

To create and define your target personas, you will need to some research about your business’ current and/or desired audience. If you have been running your business for a few years, you should already have some familiarity with your business’ target(s). If you are already using Google and Meta for your advertising, these platforms collect valuable information about their users. They will provide you with a wide set of analytics about your business’ advertising and search to help generate target personas. There are numerous other research methods for determining target personas, including surveys, interviews, observing industry trends, and analyzing your competitors and their target audiences.

Don’t Forget About a Persona’s Role

An important aspect of these personas is their role. Certain individuals are more likely to make purchases based on certain roles in their personal lives. For example, Old Spice’s series of “Hello Ladies” advertisements that began in 2010 were a result of the deodorant company determining a major target audience of women customers who purchased deodorant for their male partners. While Old Spice’s primary audience consisted of men with the role of users, these women had the purchasing role that made them a critical target and essential to the company’s rebranding this past decade.

These roles can be more difficult to determine than the raw demographics provided to you by various marketing platforms and tools. They rely on observing and analyzing your customers’ behaviour. However, they can prove invaluable for understanding and strategizing around the purchasing power and decisions of a target customer.

How to Use Your Customer Personas

Customer personas will allow you to plan and specifically strategize any focused marketing campaign. Specific products or services of your business may not appeal to your entire audience, so knowing your business’ targets will allow you to properly focus on individual marketing campaigns. For example, PPC advertising platforms like Google Ads and Meta will allow you to set targets for each ad campaign. By defining your customer personas, you will be able to appropriately target each one of these ads. 

You will similarly use these personas in your social media marketing, to strategize which posts will best attract engagement. An important strategizing factor is customer personas’ preferred platforms. Certain targets may be specific to one platform for your digital marketing such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Any marketing on these platforms should be targeted toward the interests of that specific customer persona. 

The Importance of Refining and Redefining Your Customer Personas

Defining and targeting customer personas is not simply a one-and-done deal. You should regularly refine them as you receive more data and complete more research. This refinement will help you determine whom to exclude from your customer personas. For example, women might be a general target audience, but you may find that those under the age of 20 or those over the age of 60 are not typically your customers. This kind of information refines your business’ customer personas to be more accurate targets.

You will also need to redefine your target and customer personas as both your business and audience naturally change over time. To come back to the Old Spice example, the company is currently again retargeting its marketing as they have determined new younger customer personas. This continuous research is also important for developing and strategizing your business’ brand, products, and services. It’s not enough to merely know your audience, you need to keep understanding them.

Keep Your Eye on the Target

Creating and maintaining customer personas is essential to effective marketing and business strategizing. Knowing the subgroups of your audience will allow you to more directly communicate with them and grow your business’ reach among these individuals. It will also ensure your business isn’t pursuing audience dead ends. If you need help creating, finding, or redefining your target audience and customer personas, contact Rosewood’s digital marketing team. They’ll help you get and keep your eyes on the target.

Some of the Rosewood Team standing side by side smiling.

We’ve previously explained how to maintain and manage your business’ relationship with influencers. This time we’re going to look at how you can work successfully with your marketing team, like the one at Rosewood Marketing. They work closely alongside your business to create meaningful and impactful marketing campaigns. It is an active and long-term relationship, and a marketing team will require consistent collaboration from other parts of your business. You will want to follow certain practices that ensure their optimal performance. After all, their success is also yours. Here’s how to successfully work with your marketing team.

Regular and Clear Communication

Every relationship relies on clear and consistent communication, and it’s no less true for successfully working with your marketing team. Maintain a steady dialogue so that you keep each other updated. Inform your marketing team as early as possible with all the pertinent details about new products or new services, collaborations with other companies, attendances at public events, etc. This is invaluable information about your business’ work, and your marketing team can only plan around them if they receive this information early. At the same time, marketing can move fast, so it’s also beneficial if they can ask pertinent questions and have them answered promptly to jump on a sudden trend. In turn, they can update your business in a timely manner and can provide updates with regular performance reports and analytics. 

Have and Update Your Goals

Your marketing team will create, handle, and communicate any plans they make to accomplish your business’ marketing goals. However, you and your business need to first set those goals. Ask yourself some questions. What do you hope marketing will accomplish for your business? Do you want to increase discoverability or advertise certain products? Are there aspects of your business you want to highlight or receive more attention? The answers to those questions will help provide the basis for a marketing team to start planning. Remember to continue asking these questions, so that you can regularly communicate new or revised goals to your marketing team. 

Listen to Your Marketing Team

With clear communication and these goals set, your marketing team can help identify the best and optimal channels to accomplish them and start formulating plans and timelines. To work successfully with your marketing team, listen to their input and feedback. They will develop clear objectives from your goals and define key performance indexes (KPIs) for tracking progress. They will be able to tell you whether online advertisingsocial media, or search engine optimization will be most effective, along with the best practices. Your marketing team may refine or revise your goals based on their own professional experience or identify certain communication and information as necessary. Similarly, their reports will include insightful analysis that explains and interprets the various statistics. 

All of this is valuable information, so listen. Just as your marketing team will rely on your knowledge about your business and industry, you rely on their expertise and knowledge about marketing. They are experts in communication channels, tools, and methods. They understand what the general public and more specifically your community wants, expects, and needs to see. Your marketing team will use that expertise to produce effective marketing, introduce you to unfamiliar concepts, and guide you through any new processes. Your marketing team is just as invested in its success, so heeding their insight is essential to successfully working with them.

Provide Them with Materials

The best marketing content has real depictions of your business. People love to see authenticity at work. Stock photography is convenient and has its uses, but the strongest and most successful marketing has images and videos of your business, its products, and team. Unfortunately, your marketing team cannot always be present to capture such content. Thankfully, most people today have phones with great cameras sitting in their pockets. Take pictures and record videos of your business operating when the opportunity arises. We recommend creating a cloud drive such as Google Drive or Dropbox where you can regularly upload the materials for your marketing team to access. Not everything might be a perfect asset for your marketing team, but regularly providing them with those materials will give them a treasury for creating some truly outstanding and special marketing. If you want some more professional materials, consider getting professional photography and videography of your business and brand.

There are myriad other materials that can help your marketing team be successful. Branding materials from companies whose products you carry are high quality and valuable. Has your business received thank you messages? Those are fantastic testimonials for your marketing team to advertise. If you’re not sure what materials might be useful and your marketing team has, it is best to ask. Your marketing team will happily inform you of the kinds of materials that can help them be more successful. 

A Critical Part of Your Business

Following these best practices is critical to successfully working with your marketing team. Steady communication, clear and definitive goals, space for input, and a regular supply of materials will provide them the basis to help your business grow. Your marketing team is a critical component of your business, and like any organ, it needs to work together with the others to ensure the body’s, in this case your business’, health and success. If you are ready to start meeting your marketing goals, contact Rosewood today.

Google building hosting ads great for small business

It’s a misconception that the monolithic online advertising platform of Google Ads is only for large businesses. Google Ads provides a platform that is actually advantageous for small businesses to grow their reach and brand discoverability. Scalability, precise targeting, and detailed reports make Google Ads great for small business. If you’re curious how, keep reading.  

Budgeting that Scales

Scalability is one of the central reasons Google Ads is perfect for large and small businesses alike. Google Ads doesn’t require running a full marketing platform of every kind of campaign with a massive budget. Instead, small businesses can start with a single targeted campaign and expand as you determine what methods are successful. After that, it is easy to scale up and down as needed. This is great for small businesses who occasionally have product or service launches, special promotions, or more active seasonal periods. Google Ads makes it easy to run those additional campaigns at the appropriate times and scale back to more standard ads when its timely.

Pay Per Click Model is Great for Small Businesses

Google Ads run on a pay or cost per click model, i.e., a business only pays for each click on the ad. The rates for these ads are according to the search terms set for the ad. More popular key terms will have a higher fee than those searched less frequently. This is great for small businesses because they often operate in a niche, meaning their ad key terms can be more focused and cheaper. Furthermore, you will only be paying for the ads that are working, meaning an ad’s cost is directly relational to its performance.

Targeting Locality

Today, many small businesses benefit from online sales, but they still rely largely on local customers and clients. This makes Google Ads especially great for small businesses. Over 46% of Google searches are for local information. This means nearly half the searches made by those near your small business are providing ideal advertising opportunities. With Google’s Geotargeting, you can define your ads to appear specifically in searches made in the area around your business. Google’s detailed metrics even allows you to target certain demographics within those locals. Overall, Google Ads are great for increasing your business’ local presence and discoverability.

Customizability where Ads Appear

Google Ads can appear in Google searches, shopping suggestions at the top, maps, Play apps, and partner websites. This provides a small business with a wide assortment of places to put their ads. These further allow a business to target a specific demographic or potential client. For example, product-based businesses can have their products appear at the top of any search as a shopping suggestion, increasing your business’ discoverability as a shopping option.

Clear Metrics and Transparent Results for Small Businesses

Google provides thorough and clear statistics and reports for any ads and campaigns you run. These statistics will indicate which leads generate clicks, where ads are most effective, and what kind of ads people respond to. For small businesses that will be creating fewer and more targeted ads, this provides immensely valuable information for tracking performance and selecting and creating the most effective ads. Those metrics also include detailed budget tracking that is highly beneficial for small businesses. These clearly show the ROI of each ad and campaign so you can properly scale and allocate your advertising budget appropriately.

Great Feedback for Small Business SEO

Advertising tends to provide more immediate results for determining what generates clicks and visits to your business’ website than building up its search engine optimization (SEO). Smaller businesses tend to add pages slower to their websites, since they inherently have a smaller content production pipeline. This can make optimizing search engine performance a lengthier process for a small business. However, SEO is vital for the performance of your business’ website in searches and growing your brand’s discoverability. The performance metrics from Google Ads are great for a small business to determine what potential customers or clients are interested in, helping you tailor your site’s content to organically appear more often in their searches.  

Getting Started with Google Ads

Hopefully this short list of key features of Google Ads makes it clear how the platform is great for small businesses. It’s scalability, local functionality, diverse tool set, and detailed reporting make it ideal for small business advertising. Want to start growing your business’ discoverability with Google Ads? Contact Rosewood and ask about our Google Ad services to help you get you started!