How we used social media data to build digital buyer personas

Leveraging the wealth of data on social media to build comprehensive customer profiles

By ARBEN KQIKU

Around 80% of people in developed countries now use social media regularly, with Facebook and Instagram being the most popular channels. The main appeal of social networking is that it offers content tailored to the unique interests of every user, not to mention an easy way for people to keep in touch. And, since every interaction leaves a trail of data, it’s possible to build a social media persona for every user – and that’s one of the most valuable marketing tools of all.

The route to impactful social media messaging

Social media users want content that is tailored to their interests. To determine what sort of content will resonate most with your target audiences, you need to know what drives them. This requires building a digital buyer persona that represents your ideal customer, and social media is perhaps the best venue of all for acquiring the necessary insights. This doesn’t only apply to businesses, but to any organisation or individual wanting to build an audience.

One of our clients is a leader in the luxury watchmaking industry, which sought to promote a new line of products. The goal of their campaign was to serve different messages to different audience segments, to demonstrate that they were in touch with their unique preferences and needs. The themes we covered in the campaign were:

  • Technology and ease of use
  • Brand prestige
  • Manufacturing materials
  • History of the brand

These themes appeal to different segments of the company’s target audience, thus we had to find a way to identify the buyer personas most likely to be interested in the brand. We began by dividing social media users into two groups – those who often share their new purchases on social media, and those who prefer to keep a low profile.

Over a period of several months, we exposed existing social media personas to the full range of the themes covered, using Facebook and Instagram as the platforms of choice, since that’s where most potential customers were. Moreover, Facebook makes it easy to segment target audiences based on factors such as age and gender. Now, we just had to wait for the results.

Measuring the impact of social media marketing

Once we had gathered enough data to draw meaningful conclusions, we used our proprietary algorithm to determine the content preferences of each social media persona. This allowed us to quantify the engagement rates across different themes according to age group and gender. Some of the results may not be what you’d expect.

Below we can see the buyer personas that like to share their purchases on social media. For women aged 55 to 64, the most popular theme was technology and ease of use. This saw the highest engagement rate of all, weighing in at 49%, followed by brand history at 16%, then brand prestige at 13%, while the least popular theme was manufacturing materials, which only saw an engagement rate of 4%. Thus, this informed us that advertisements targeted towards this group should primarily revolve around the theme of technology and ease of use.

In fact, technology and ease of use proved the most popular theme among all age groups and genders, with the exception of men aged between 18 and 24, who engaged more with the theme of prestige. The lowest engagement rate we saw was with the theme of manufacturing materials, especially among younger men and women.

Engagement Rate by Persona and Theme

How does this apply to buyer persona digital marketing?

By targeting personas based on relative interests and serving personalised content, we were able to build a campaign that contributed to increased sales and a better return on advertising investment.

However, we can apply this exact same algorithm to any organisation that has multiple buyer personas. For example, an e-commerce business can use it to tailor their messaging as such that distinct buyer personas primarily see ads for products that are most likely to interest them. Similarly, a newspaper can use it to display different news categories to different personas. Indeed, any organisation can benefit from targeted, personalised ads to drive sales and keep ad spend to a minimum. Even a business that only sells one product can benefit too, simply by promoting different product benefits to different audiences.

comtogether combines data science and analytics with proven digital marketing expertise to help you build high-impact, customer-centric digital marketing campaigns. Contact us today to schedule your free strategy session.

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About the author

Arben
Arben graduated with a Master in Psychology. Apart from keeping us in good mental shape, he brings his passion & creativity to data analytics and programs the automations that save our customers valuable time.