Marketing personas are an interesting thing because they are believed to be very powerful in the promotion of your business. Why? Well it is believed that without knowing who your ideal customers are, it is very difficult to create an effective marketing strategy to attract more of those types of people.
So as a business owner you are asked to create a buyer persona. This is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer, their backgrounds, their goals, their challenges, and so on, based on market research (opinion polls, user surveys, and social analysis), gut feelings and data. For this you could build from your existing data and customer perceptions or there are thousands of companies that are willing to give you an opinion on who this semi-fictional individual is for your business.
You are told that without understanding this so-called ideal customer inside and out, marketing efforts and business growth are at risk. The problem, however, is that people are constantly changing. One day its yoga and then next its cross fit. With this happening more and more, traditional persona creation is becoming outdated.
Humans, however, love to label people, and groups: codified language like Millennials and Baby Boomers and pack a ton information into a conveniently generalized term. So, in response to trying to nail down these ever-changing interests we have seen the creation of the interest graphs. There are tons of business that are constantly monitoring online conversations and social data to create networks of connections between individuals to evaluate them, and ultimately aggregate. However, these generalizations and user-provided labels or social data from likes, trends, and interest patterns tell a very shallow story.
We believe understanding real human behaviour is the key to the creation of better personas. The base for this comes from