For week eight, our only reading assignment was to read Chapter 10 of The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Scott. Chapter 10 was entitled, “You Are What You Publish: Building Your Marketing and PR Plan.” This is a very important aspect for any business, whether you sell products or offer services. One of the most essential things to remember for a marketing or PR plan is to focus your complete attention on the buyers. For my analysis, I wanted to discuss buyer personas.
A buyer persona is a representative of what type of buyer organizations have identified as having a specific interest in the company or product. Building buyer personas are the single most vital step in creating the plan. Scott has a very interesting example in his book. A college website usually identifies five different buyer personas: young alumni, older alumni, the high school student who is considering college, the parents of the prospective student and current students. Therefore, a well-executed college site should target these five distinct buyer personas.
I took a look at ONU’s website to see if we were able to target the five different personas. On our home page, we are able to reach five personas with a drop down tab named, “Information for you.” The choices visitors to the website can select are: current students, faculty and staff, prospective students, parents and family, and alumni. I think our website does a fantastic job of reaching people are who invested in ONU or want to become a part of our Polar Bear family. This was done because ONU was able to get to know as much as they could about the particular group of people. For example, under the parents and family section, ONU realized they are a huge part of the decision process and often pay the bills. Therefore, the section includes a letter from Dr. Baker regarding tuition and our transition to semesters. Also, there is a link to sign up for the e-mail newsletter, Northern Express.
The buyer persona profile gives companies a chance to emphasize with target buyers and see the product or service through the buyer’s eyes. When customers encounter your website, you want the customers to think this organization understands me and my needs. ONU’s website does a great job of displaying different web content that will fit everyone’s specific wants and needs.