Skip to Content

6 Steps to Create a Persona that Drives Your Marketing

6 Steps to Create a Persona that Drives Your Marketing

A persona is a reliable and realistic representation of your key audience segment that’s based on research. Many businesses will have multiple personas based on different customer segments.

How do you know if that marketing campaign has the right tone? The right theme? The right call to action? You know because you can test it against your personas, and if it fits, it’s right.

A persona is a reliable and realistic representation of your key audience segment that’s based on research. Many businesses will have multiple personas based on different customer segments. No matter how many you have, each should include a job title, demographics, that segment’s goals, a summary of their environment, and other information that fleshes out the persona.

The research for your personas can come from a variety of sources. Your CRM platform provides a wealth of information, as does Facebook. Focus groups and customer interviews, third-party studies, and Google Analytics are additional resources. Once you have the data, condense the research, and then organize it so it accurately represents your target users. From there, it’s time to give your personas more personality and depth so they’re a useful, powerful tool for your marketing efforts. Check out the infographic below for more on how to create your own personas.

What is a persona?

  • Reliable and realistic representations of your key audience segments
  • Used for reference
  • Based on qualitative and quantitative data:
    • User research
    • Web analytics
  • Personas help to focus marketing decisions by adding a layer of real-world consideration

Parts You Should Include in Your Personas

  • Persona Group based on your customers
    • For example, a car dealership could include: [no source]
      • First-time used car buyers
      • Parents buying a used car for their teenager
      • “Just got a great new job” shoppers
      • Major fans of the brand
  • Fictional name
  • Job titles and major responsibilities
  • Demographics
    • Age
    • Education
    • Family status
  • The goals and tasks your product or service will help them achieve or complete
  • Their environment
    • Physical
    • Social
    • Technological
  • A quote that sums up what matters most to the persona as it relates to your company
  • Casual pictures representing your persona

Steps for Creating Personas for Your Marketing

  1. Conduct user research
    1. Answer important questions like:
      1. Who are your customers?
      2. Why do they need your company?
      3. What behaviors, assumptions, and expectations color their view of your company?
    2. Pull data from Facebook Audience Insights
      1. Demographics: Age, gender, job title, relationship status, education level
      2. Interests: Categories and page likes
      3. Location: Where they live
      4. Activity: Frequency of online activity and device usage
      5. Household: Income, home ownership, home market value, spending methods
      6. Purchase Behavior: Likelihood of online purchases, purchase behavior
    3. Talk to customers directly
      1. Focus groups
      2. Interview customers
      3. Surveys
      4. User profiles
    4. Google Analytics
    5. User profiles
    6. Third-party studies
    7. Internal data [examples not in source]
      1. Reports from your customer relationship management (CRM) platform, including data from sales, marketing, and customer service
      2. Interviews with employees who work on the front lines of your company
      3. Analytics from your app
  2. Condense the research
    1. Look for themes and characteristics that are specific, relevant, and universal to your company and customers.
  3. Brainstorm
    1. Organize your research into persona groups that represent your target users.
    2. Name or classify each group.
  4. Refine
    1. Combine and prioritize the draft personas.
    2. Separate them into primary, secondary, and (if necessary) complementary categories.
    3. You should have roughly 3-5 personas and their identified characteristics.
  5. Make them realistic
    1. Develop the appropriate descriptions of each persona’s background, motivations, and expectations.
    2. Be relevant and serious.
  6. Input your personas in your CRM platform
    1. Create a custom “Persona” field for your contacts based on other fields and criteria.
    2. With the Persona field, you can run reports based on personas to learn more about them
      1. Discover which persona has a high conversion rate
      2. Refine your strategy for targeting personas that have low conversion rates
      3. Pay attention to how long each persona takes to convert
      4. Find out how much engagement — and how many touchpoints — each persona generally needs
      5. Measure marketing performance in terms of how well a campaign engages different personas


A persona is a fictional character that represents a segment of your audience. These characters can help marketers create more targeted campaigns and improve conversion rates.

How to measure your content marketing. Get the ebook.

Share “6 Steps to Create a Persona that Drives Your Marketing” On Your Site

Salesforce Canada More by Salesforce

Get timely updates and fresh ideas delivered to your inbox.