7 Tips for Researching Personas

Posted by Vira Vielmann
Vira Vielmann

Picture this: Your stakeholders have asked multiple times for a timeline and activities for the next marketing campaign. You've pitched the idea and they loved it! Now there's a fire under you to get it packaged and ready to launch. You deliver to management what's needed and have no time to check the boxes. You need this done to move to the next thing.  Sound familiar?

As marketers, we never have time to smell the roses. Things just need to get done. However, if you don't take the time to stop and think about who your target audience is for a given campaign, it could cost you in more ways than one. Before you start planning out activities and milestones for the next campaign, you need to map out your personas - your ideal customers. Marketing to everyone is like shooting in the dark, which will cost you time, money, and resources in the long run.

If you haven't developed personas before, it's time to start now. Begin with research. It doesn't require complex algorithms or countless of hours of googling either. Find out what research already exists about your customer to make your search easier and faster.

7 Tips For Researching Personas

Say your product or service benefits millennial moms the most. You want them to buy from you. Here's how you could do some research on them. 

  1. Search for demographic information about your customer. Use keyword “population” for details about your audience like total numbers, age, gender, etc.

    millennial mom1
  2. Use psychographics keywords like shopping, buying, marketing, attitudes, aspirations to find out what makes your customer tick. You might discover things like, Where do they shop?, When do they buy? 

    millennialmoms2
  3. Hunt for surveys: It is quite possible that other customers have surveyed your target persona. A survey is an excellent way to get a lot of details. This survey from Motherly interviewed over 8,000 moms and provide a breakdown by age for all the answers.

    millennialmoms3
  4. It is simple, but limit results by date so you only see things from the last year or two. It makes sifting through all the results so much more easier and more productive.

    millennialmoms4
  5. Think about the kinds of information you are looking for. Would someone make a graph or chart of the info? Could there be an infographic that already exists? Add your keywords and then filter by images to find out.

    millennialmoms5
  6. When you are trying to find full reports and white papers, limit your search by filetype:pdf. This will only pull up PDF documents.

    millennialmoms6
  7. Look for conferences, association or groups that target your audience. They will often provide papers, presentations, surveys, and population data. Sometimes you have to be a member or pay for current reports, but see if you can find last year’s report for free. 


millennialmoms7
millennialmoms7b