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Brand Personas vs Buyer Personas: What’s the Difference?

by | May 24, 2022 | Branding

The past few years saw significant advances in digital marketing that enabled us to design and deliver highly-targeted marketing. With access to analytics, demographics, and data, we can create buyer personas that represent specific segments of your audience and tailor them based on how they engage with your site, content, and products. 

Although buyer persona is already a well-understood concept in marketing, it is still often confused with branding persona. Brand persona and buyer persona are two separate marketing concepts. But, use them together and you can create a consistent, powerful messaging that resonates with your audience. 

 

What is the Difference Between Brand Persona & Buyer Persona? 

 

What is a Buyer Persona? 

A buyer persona—also called marketing personas, customer personas, or audience personas—is a research-based profile that describes your target customers, the challenges they face, and the decisions they make to resolve them. 

A single business can have multiple buyer personas representing different types of customers who may buy their products for different reasons. Each has different characteristics and criteria for assessing a product/service and that being said, you would have to create a corresponding strategy to address their needs. 

 

Why is a Buyer Persona Important? 

Having a deep understanding of your buyer personas is critical to directing your resources toward qualified audiences and aligning all aspects of your marketing strategy—from content creation to product development, sales, and service. It should help you understand and empathize with your target audience, and do a better job of attracting and retaining high-value customers. 

 

How to Create a Buyer Persona 

When building a buyer persona, keep in mind that it doesn’t necessarily describe the end-user of your products. It can also be a decision-maker who decides whether to purchase something or not. It means the characteristics, problems, and solutions you draft for this persona would likely be different from those of a user persona. 

For example, if you’re in the business of selling infant clothing, you can think of infants as the user persona for your products. The parents will be the buyer persona being the decision-makers who buy or don’t buy the clothes for their child. 

It means for your buyer persona, your priority would be to make the clothes appealing to parents and at the same time, take into consideration the factors they are looking for in baby clothes: fabric, comfort, washability, etc. A buyer persona usually outlines information such as: 

  • Name 
  • Professional background 
  • Age range 
  • Interests 
  • Goals & challenges 
  • Role in the purchasing decision 
  • Channel preferences 
  • How your brand/products/services can help them achieve their goals and overcome challenges 
  • Your marketing message 
  • Your key selling points 

There are several online tools available to help you through this process, such as Semrush’s Persona Tool. This free tool lets you build unlimited personas using customizable templates. Based on your needs, you can expand from there.

Drag queen makeup vlogger shows a clear brand persona.

This makeup vlogger has a clear visual brand persona.

What is a Brand Persona? 

While a buyer persona represents your target audience, a branding persona is the personification of your brand. Imagine your business as a person with a face and characteristics that portray the values, voice, and tone you want to present to your customers. It is complete with a fictitious name and interests—much like a character in a novel. 

However, a brand persona not only has to be realistic but also consistent across all your marketing channels and touchpoints. Your customers should easily recognize you, relate to you, and grasp what your brand is about. This ensures a consistent brand identity and a cohesive experience for new and existing customers. 

 

Why is a Brand Persona Important? 

Don’t worry about your audience getting sick of you. A reliable branding agency should help you create a strong brand presence and build recognition which would then lead to increased trust. The more users see and recognize you, the easier you will gain trust. A good brand persona would help you accomplish these things and more by creating a reference point—a relatable human voice that your target audience can relate to as someone they know.

 

How to Create a Brand Persona 

If you are new to creating personas, a good way to start is by creating a personality or a type of person you think would be most interested in your offering. But, before all that, you would need to have a firm grasp on your brand and get a clear view of the following: 

  • Your personality image: what does your persona look like—a human, a mascot, or another object? 
  • Overview of your brand—what it is for, its purpose, and its message 
  • The list of traits you want to highlight 
  • Voice and tone—how you would speak and engage with your audience in written communications 

Where Buyer Persona & Brand Persona Matter 

In summary, buyer persona and brand persona are two marketing concepts that make a business distinctive through visual attributes, messaging, voice, and tone. Both should help you create a real connection between your brand and users. 

Whereas you use buyer personas to profile your target customers—demographics, income, interests, behavioral traits, etc.—to reach a specific audience segment with the right message at the right time, a brand persona helps you cover all of the assets that contribute to your brand image. It outlines the traits, attitudes, and values you want to highlight and may also set the standard tone of your brand’s written messaging.

 

Create Your Persona to Reach Your Public 

You want your audience to feel like they know you— like a long-lost friend or someone they have known for years. Along the same lines, today’s consumers expect businesses to deliver personalized interactions. 

A good buyer persona can help you establish real, valuable connections with your target customers. It serves as your guide in ensuring that all your marketing strategies are tailored to their needs. Meanwhile, your brand persona is something that your audience will associate with your brand. As such, you have to ensure that it reflects what you want users to think about when they engage with you. 

You can use this comprehensive guide to get started. But, working with a branding agency like Public Advertising Agency will help you go in-depth in creating both brand and buyer personas that will connect you to your customers for the long term. 

 

Ready to get started? Let our experts at Public help you create the perfect personas for your brand. Visit our website to learn more. 

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