What is a User Profile?

A user profile is a collection of data about a particular customer which a brand uses to build a picture of their customer base or target audience. You use them to ensure the products, information and services you deliver are relevant and whether they are meeting the needs of your desired audience.

You’re aiming to build a sketch of someone – their job, interests, demographics, behaviour, so that you can understand your customer as much as possible.

Try to build 3-5 personas for your brand. Some might be existing customers that you want to retain, as well as new customers you’re looking to attract.

How do I know who my customer is?

You can find some information about your customers using your website’s and social media’s analytics. These will give you top line data about who your customers are and some key demographics. You can also collect information from consumer research and surveys to help collect the information you need, or think about people you already know who are also potential customers to build your profiles.

As well as your own data, external sources such as Acorn’s CACI data provides a heap of information about customers and their lifestyles.

Building the Profile

You don’t have to include all of this information to build your user profile – just pick what’s available to you and what’s relevant, and add anything else you can think of.

  • Name –use an actual name here – it makes the persona feel like a real person!
  • Gender
  • Age
  • Location
  • Job role
  • Salary
  • Education
  • Hobbies
  • Needs
    • What needs would drive them to come across your brand? What are they looking for that you could help with? Do they have a problem that you could help solve?
  • How can you fulfil these needs?
  • Likes
    • How do they like to consume information eg. video, blog? Where do they shop and how?
  • Dislikes
    • What would turn them off your brand? Are they happy to be sold to, or do they need a softer approach?
  • Devices – What kind of device are they using when they’re looking for information and products? This will help determine what content you need to produce and where

Having User Profiles and using them effectively in your planning will produce a better customer experience for your users engage them with your brand and make sure your best placed to solve their problems.

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