“The buyer, the prospect, the customer expects you to have knowledge of their stuff, not just your”
-Jeffrey Gitomer, King of Sales
While there are many great strategies for selling products and services online, there is one rule that will always be the most important: Know your audience.
If you don’t know who you’re talking to, you will almost certainly end up wildly shooting in the dark and wasting a lot of time and energy on trying to attract people to your business.
So, before you can understand your customers, first you have to know who they are – Or as marketers like to say, you need to create a buyer persona for your business. Having a buyer persona will not only help you understand what your customers want, what their values are, and how to address them, It will also help you to build a more effective sales strategy, increase your ROI and minimize unnecessary work.
How does a well-rounded buyer persona look like?
Buyer personas are built on research, not guesswork.
Here’s an example. Let’s say you have a dental practice in Hudson Valley. You have many patients, your appointments are booked all day but they’re often filled with routine check-ups that don’t provide optimal margins. So your goal is to attract more new patients through social media for a specific service, like cosmetic or sedation dentistry.
The first thing you’ll want to do is to do some research on your existing patients who had cosmetic dentistry at your dental office. These people actually used the services you want to promote, so they are the most targeted people to look at. Check what your patient records can tell you about your existing patients’ demographics and other characteristics. You want to look for information and things they have in common, such as:
4. Level of education
6. Marital status
7. Do they have any children?
8. Are they tech-savvy?
If you have someone who’s managing your website, you can ask them:
1. What demographic information do they have about your website visitors?
2. Which blog posts have received the most traffic, comments and social shares?
3. Which pages on your website get the most impressions?
By understanding the characteristics of your ideal patients, and learning what pain-points, frustrations, and obstacles they face you’ll be armed with what you need to attract their attention with a killer content marketing strategy and guide them through their buyer’s journey.
What is the Buyer’s Journey?
The buyer’s journey is the active research process a buyer goes through leading up to a purchase.”
Every buyer’s journey is a three-step process:
1. Awareness Stage: The patient realizes they have a problem.
2. Consideration Stage: The patient researches options to solve it.
3. Decision Stage: The patient chooses a solution.
Now, let’s say that after you’ve created the buyer persona, you’ve learned that 80% of your patients who had some type of cosmetic dental procedure are women, living in Hudson Valley, age 30 to 45, married, and have a full-time job.
The most common reason why people have cosmetic dentistry in the first place is that they are subconscious about the color and crowding of her teeth. This puts them at the first stage of the buyer’s journey – Awareness Stage.
In the awareness stage, your potential patient (let’s call her Mary) might see your Facebook or Instagram ad about dental veneers addressing some of the most common objections, like financing options and dental anxiety. Later she might see a video testimonial of your other patients talking about their experience with your dental practice. At this point Mary starts to think about doing something to rejuvenate her own smile.
In the consideration stage, Mary will begin asking her friends and family about their experiences and find out if any of them have seen a dentist who specializes in cosmetic dentistry. After getting some feedback, she begins looking for a local dentist who specializes in cosmetic dentistry.
In the decision stage, Mary narrows down her selection to three to five local practices. She reviews their before and after pictures and checks the comments of their patients on third-party review sites. Next, she will contact each office directly, ask a few questions, and if she is satisfied, schedule an appointment.
With well-rounded and carefully laid-out content marketing strategy you can use this predictable pattern to guide them through their journey by sending the right message at the right time.
If you lack the time or know-how, we’ll be more than happy to help you bring more people to your practice.