It’s so important that if you talk to any of the salon marketing superstars, you’ll see that salon buyer persona drives the train when they’re creating any kind of content. And that’s whether we’re talking about content for their websites or any of their other online properties.
In my opinion, it’s the most important part of your online conversation.
Most stylists and salon owners I talk to aren’t heavy into internet marketing. So when we talk websites, the conversation almost always follows a standard order. We begin by talking about building a website if they don’t have one or rebuilding a site that’s already online.
At some point afterwards, we talk about getting the website found in the search engines. That may seem like the logical order but starting like that assumes that being found online is your first priority.
Being found online by people who are interested in what you’re talking about is your highest priority. Your salon buyer persona helps you wrap your brain around who those people are and helps you focus what you talk about.
If you’re unfamiliar with salon buyer personas, fear not. In this episode we talk about what they are, why they’re so important.
If you’re standing behind the chair, do you create content on a regular basis. if you do, what are you using for a buyer persona? I’d love to hear what you’ve got to say.
Salon Buyer Persona Episode Transcript
[0:00] [intro music playing]
[0:23] When it comes to setting up your website, “Who are you?” Is a good question to ask. I’ve got one more question, just as important. “What do you want?”
[0:41] [music playing continuously]
[0:54] How are you doing? Chris Carter, your Internet Sherpa here. Welcome to episode 93 of I Help Salons. This is the podcast for independent stylists who need a website, can’t quite get it started, started a website, can’t quite get it finished. There’s a lot of stories in the naked city. I’m going to help you get yours told.
[1:11] I know, that opening soundbite was long, but, it was The Who. How cool is that? I couldn’t jump in at the…”Who are you?” part. It wouldn’t work. Hopefully, you didn’t mind.
[1:25] We’re talking about salon buyer persona this week. We’re talking about the stages, in the buying process, because we’re building a website here. We’re building a website that’s part of your system. You’re going to aim that system specifically. You’re not just going to build it and try to catch everybody, because it’s not going to work, never does, never will. We’re not going to try to make it do that. We’re going to make sure you understand the concept of pointing your content, website at a specific group of people.
[1:53] The phrase that pays here is buyer persona. Buyer persona is not a demographic thing. It’s a composite concept, with a face attached to it, of who your best customer would be.
[2:07] If you look at the folks that come through the door, sit in the chair, and all that. You say, “Basically, the folks that I’m shooting for, my best customer, looks like this.” Then you may come up with something like, “She’s, I’m going to assume it’s a she. It could be a dude. I don’t know. It’s your shop. You roll it the way you want to roll it.”
[2:27] Let’s say for this example, that she’s in her mid-30s, she’s got a 10 year old, she’s got a six year old, something like that, she drives a CR-V, husband does this that and the other, or make her the breadwinner. However you do it, but you have a picture of what she brings to the table. You don’t stop there, because that’s not the important part. That helps you flesh out the picture, the “who” we’re talking about.
[2:51] What’s most important is, once you have a concept of who this best customer is, or the composite is, you can start to wrap your head around what’s important to her. Once you understand what’s important to her, you can transmit on the frequency that she’s listening on. That’s the most important thing you need to understand about a salon buyer persona. Think about it.
[3:13] If you lived in Lexington, Kentucky and I know, I’m going to the heartland this week. In Lexington Kentucky, “How many people would you say live there?” A little over 308,000. I’m looking at 308,428. If you’re a stylistic in Lexington, you have no use for all 308,428 folks. You don’t. You only want a handful of those folks. If you think about it. Let’s turn that around.
[3:37] There’s only a handful of those folks that have any use for what you do. If you are into natural hair, you tailor to that folks, if the shop that they’re looking at doesn’t do natural hair, they’re not thinking about it. If your big thing is a blowout bar, or you do extensions, somebody who’s not into extensions can’t hear you, doesn’t have any use for you. Basically, what you do appeals to somebody. You need to have an idea of who that is, and understand what they find important so you can market to them. They’ve got questions about different things.
[4:06] Your job is to get the answers out in front of them. Which of course brings me out to the different stages of the buying process.
[4:12] If you go online, and you Google up “stages of the buying process” you’re going to see a lot of different things. There’s four or five, depending on who you’re talking to. Right now, we’re talking about the first three. In the world according to Sherpa, it breaks down like this:
[4:26] People of Stage 1. I’ve got a problem. I don’t know what the solution is. Stage 2. I know what the solution is. I don’t know where to find that solution. Stage 3. I know where to find those solutions. I’m choosing which one. Now Stage 4 is the one we want, that’s where they’re drinking the Kool Aid, sitting in your chair. For right now, we’re talking about the first three and understanding that, as folks wandering around online, wherever they wander, they’re looking for answers to their questions, things that draw them in.
[4:54] You’re throwing out your little breadcrumbs and tidbits in all the different places you’re going to throw them, based on trying to touch these people who are your buyer persona, who are at different stages. You see how, it’s not even a “chicken and the egg” thing. Those two have to go together. You have to understand the buyer persona who you’re shooting for, what frequency they’re listening on, what’s important to them. You got to understand, and you got to throw stuff out for where they happen to be in the front of the process.
[5:18] You want repeat customers. Repeat customers have to start somewhere. You may have somebody out there who for whatever reason, needs hair coloring. Maybe they got witchy-poo going on all up on top of their head. They need keratin in the worst way. Maybe they don’t know that there’s such a thing.
[5:37] Maybe you have another solution. Maybe you’re organic. There’s people out there who want straight hair, don’t want keratin. “See what I’m saying?” There’s people out there who want specific stuff, and you need to speak to the issue.
[5:51] You need to catch them at whatever stage they’re at, to get these folks to understand who you are, what you bring to the table, and come closer to you. [jokingly] Yada yada yada yada, cheeks in the seats, repeat buyers, and all that good stuff. We’ll talk about that later. The reason I’m bringing this up, is because, I’ve told you that I don’t think that you need to be building your website.
[6:12] As skill sets go, it’s a bit higher level. If you’re talking about what we’re been talking about, aiming your website at a specific group of people. That’s way too much learning for the amount of time you’ve go. Especially when there’s folks that will build one for you. Here’s the thing, if you don’t know about the concept of the buyer persona, if you don’t understand about this thing about the different stages of the buyer process, and if you want someone to build you a website, they can build you the prettiest, most useless website you’ve ever seen in your entire life.
[6:44] Just because I was curious, I wanted to illustrate for you how when people are marketing services. They totally missed this. “Remember, I told what the big C was last week? Conversion. Yeah, conversion.” Here’s all the fluffy words that you’ll see when someone’s trying to get your services to build a website. I’m looking at a particular businesses website. I’m not going to throw them under the bus, but I am going to quote from their website so you can understand.
[7:12] Right across the top, “Get a professional website and a website team. We design, update, manage everything for you.” It’s same thing I do, except much love smaller scale. “Pro website design. Website maintenance. Personal account manager. Direct line phone support.” [jokingly] Yadda, yadda, yadda. “Third-party integration. Social media integration. All this cool stuff.”
[7:36] If you ask them how it works, scroll down. It tells you everything that they will do for you. Nowhere on the page does it tell you that you have to aim your website at somebody. Doesn’t say anything about that. I decided let’s check out the marketing piece. Let’s see what they’ve got under marketing.
[7:54] “We offer a full array of small business online marketing services. Take a look at our most popular packages.” They’ve got a grow your business package. They’ve got a social media profile setup service. Online directory submissions service. Advertise on Google. Offsite search engine optimization. Content writing services.
[8:14] All these marketing things, these are all tools. They will do a thing. It may not be the right thing. It may not be the thing that you need. If you don’t understand what that thing is, you could be paying for something, think you’re getting everything you need and be getting nothing that you need.
[8:33] That’s where Sherpa Man comes in to make sure you understand. When I’m done chitchatting with you, you’ll be able to direct these folks. If you decide to go in the direction of these folks or another body, you’ll understand the one thing that ‘s most important. How to get what they do to tie in with the conversions that you need.
[8:52] I’m sure they know about conversions. I’m also sure that they are going to assume you don’t. You can buy a lot of services and get nothing that you need and never know it, if you don’t understand about what we’re talking about today.
[9:04] Buyer persona, and how those different people are acting it, and what’s important to them as they work their way through, “I’ve got a problem, I need a solution, and I need a vendor.” Very important stuff.
[9:18] I have a nice example for you. “It’s not mine, I stole it. Don’t hate, do not hate.” I was looking at Kuno Creative, and they’ve got a nice thing about creating a meaningful buyer persona. This a way of you understanding what this buyer persona thing does if you do it right.
[9:42] The writer of the articles name is Stephanie Kapera. I’m sure I pronounced that correctly. What she was talking about was… She’s a twenty something-ish, 25, 26, 27. She was sitting at home watching the Big Bang Theory with her fiance. I’m not a Big Bang Theory person. I understand that it’s funny, I just don’t get it. I’m not the target audience. She is the target audience so she’s watching this and with the show comes commercials.
[10:11] One commercial in particular that she was talking about was from a bunch of folks over at Credit Karma.
[10:17] [commercial break]
[10:45] The beauty of this commercial is that the characters in the commercial are the same demographic as her and her fiance. The things that they’re talking about are the things that are important to her and her fiance. After watching it a few times they jumped all over it. That’s content out there doing what it’s supposed to do.
[11:06] “Do I suggest you go take out an add in a newspaper?” No, no, no. I do suggest that as you put content on your website, as you build the furniture around, and in, and on your website, you make sure that you’re supposed to be targeting it… Said it correctly, targeting it…at a specific person with a specific issue, mentality, focus.
[11:27] If you do that, your contents going to be a lot more effective than if you try to make it appeal to everybody. Cool? Cool. Buyer persona stages the buying process.
[11:38] [sound alarm]
[11:42] All right. That’s my sound. That’s time for me to bounce up out of here. Hopefully, you got a little something out of that. As you can see, I’m walking the dog on this thing, because by the time were done, by the time I’m at 100, I want to be into helping you evaluate different people who are offering different things. Some of which are good, some of which are (grunts), but I want to make sure you’ve got the groundwork so you can hear me.
[12:02] If you’re new to the table, I can always send you back to this episode all this good stuff. I’ve got to lay that groundwork out right. Hopefully, this worked for you.
[12:08] Time to bounce. You know the deal, this has been another episode of the I Help Salons podcast. Brought to you by me. Your friendly, neighborhood Internet Sherpa. All the cool things that we do and by we, I mean I at the Micro Branding Wed Hosting.
[12:23] In the words of the immortal, the chief rocker Frankie Crocker, “May you live as long you want, never want as long as you live.” May you live to be 100, and me 100 minus a day. I’ll never know that nice people like you have passed away.
[12:37] That’s two weeks in a row. Oh, my goodness! Once is a oops, twice is a trend, you know the deal.
[12:43] All right folks. I’ll see you right back here next week hopefully if I get it right. [chuckles] Go forth and do great things. Bye.
[12:50] [ending music plays]
Mentioned in this Episode:
The Who – Who Are You?
With buyer Personas, Marketing Can Be Lovable and Effective by Stephanie Kapera