Customer personas have become critically important sales and marketing tools, but they’re not just for B2C companies anymore. Find out what commercial personas are, and how businesses that serve other businesses use them to grow, smarter—even during a pandemic.
This week we’re giving you a sneak peek at our forthcoming report: “Why B2Bs Need Commercial Business Personas & How They Can Use Them.”
The release of our report comes at a critical time, as businesses across sectors have had to change gears in response to COVID-19, and B2Bs are looking for fresh, new ways to keep and attract new customers.
Whether you’re launching a startup or managing a 100-year-old enterprise, knowing your customers at a granular level gives you more clarity in responding to crises of all kinds. It also helps you determine your pathway to higher revenue and can guide your expansion into new markets.
But having only a general idea of who you sell to simply isn’t enough.
In today’s fast-moving, volatile, and digital landscape, companies need more insight into who’s lurking behind the screen; more specific detail into who their buyers really are, regardless of whether those buyers are individuals or entire organizations.
Because if businesses don’t interact with their customers in the ways they want to be reached, served or spoken to, those customers waste no time moving on to the competition.
Which is why current trends all point to the need for businesses to build customer personas.
BlastPoint has been building personas for companies across industries for some time now. Here’s an example of a simplified customer persona that an energy provider might use, for example, to enroll more customers into its paperless billing program:
But we want our small business and enterprise partners to know that personas aren’t limited to just individuals, and that they’re not only meant for B2C companies.
B2Bs can, and should, use personas, too. Which is why we’re putting together a comprehensive report that details how businesses that serve other businesses can make the most out of commercial business personas.
What is a customer persona?
Before we jump to what a commercial persona is, let’s define what a regular customer persona is.
A customer persona is an imaginary, fictionalized customer who uses your business. Personas may be pretend, almost idealized customers, but they are always based on actual customer data.
They can represent existing customers, or they can represent the kinds of customers you are looking to attract in order to test a new product or program.
Somewhat differently, a commercial business persona is a data-backed, fictionalized representation of a company, nonprofit, or other organizational entity. It includes statistics like number of employees, organizational structure, annual revenue and credit rating, as well as notations on the tone of their public marketing, what kinds of advertising campaigns they run, what their budget is, who their customers are, demographic statistics of the region(s) in which they currently operate, the likelihood they’ll buy your service, and more.
Again, we show a highly simplified example to illustrate below. Here, an insurance company is considering whether to create a new specialty in insurance coverage for food truck vendors:
BlastPoint’s full report on commercial personas, which will be available for download soon, will be loaded with more examples like these to help you begin to imagine how your business might use them. We’ll also be sharing deeper insights into how they’re built and why creating one requires more legwork than the process of customer segmentation.
In the meantime, we want you to know why commercial personas can be so powerful. They give you a clear indication of three key things:
- Precisely where your best sources of revenue come from, so that you can generate more of it,
- How to craft resonant, relevant messaging that meets your business customers’ needs and will sell more of your products or services,
- Where to look next to find more customers just like the loyal ones you’re serving now.
We also want you know how B2Bs can start using commercial personas to their advantage right away.
Prepare to Pivot
Knowing exactly who your customers are, even if they’re big corporations, gives you the power to pivot in a crisis such as we are experiencing now. Listening to the desperate cries of what your customers need in real time lets you build effective strategies or showcase relevant products and services.
Expand into New Markets
Personas help you to expand into new markets, whether geographical or topical. Some of our industry partners are using commercial personas to explore new territories; they want to know if a particular region will make a good fit for their business, or which of their products are most suitable for the customers in a given area. Other organizations want to know whether now is a good time to offer a new service or deliver a new type of product. Personas can tell them all this and more.
Identify Your Perfect Partner
Commercial personas also give companies the power to identify and build great partnerships. The electric vehicle industry, for example, requires numerous entities all orchestrating in harmony to help advance this technology into the mainstream. Partnerships between and among manufacturers, regulators, car dealerships and energy providers are critical. This is just one area where commercial personas let business owners in one field get a closeup look at businesses in other arenas to help them find a partner that will make an ideal match.
We can’t wait to show you our upcoming report, “Why B2Bs Need Commercial Business Personas & How They Can Use Them.” We’ll be sharing links to the download as soon as it’s ready! If you’re ready to jump ahead now and start building data-backed customer personas for your business, please reach out to us!