Joe Kennedy (no relation) is 27 years old, lives in the Boston area (just a coincidence) and drinks beer (also a coincidence).
He is making his way into middle management at a software company and earns around $ 60,000 per year. He has an undergraduate degree from BC, and is a real sports nut. While he is a self-admitted ‘homer’ (dyed-in-the-wool Red Sox fan, big Patriots lover, Celts, Bruins, and his alma mater), he enjoys all types of sports and is knee-deep in his Rotisserie baseball league (AL-only teams) and is currently gearing up for fantasy football ’09 (has been caught with his pre-draft rankings Excel sheets open at the office during work hours. By his supervisor. Twice.).
He watches a variety of sports channels (Comcast SportsChannel, ESPN, local news, MLB channel, Golf Channel, NFL Network, and so on). He played high school baseball and football, and secretly wished he had pursued a D-3 school so that maybe he could have walked on and played throughout college.
Joe dates on and off, and has been seen out with a young lady from his company’s HR department (even though she knows better). His friends that are girls (but some who wish they were more) describe him as ‘hot,’ though he has little clue. Weekends (and some weeknights) mean bar-hopping with buddies from both high school and BC.
Joe is frugal, but not necessarily a saver yet. The youngest of five from a middle-class family, he’s held a job all of his life, even throughout undergrad. He rents downtown, rooming with a college classmate; friends, but not buddies. Drives a used, ’02 Toyota Camry.
ESPN, the Brand, would like to have Joe choose their services solely, capturing greater share of Joe’s time spent, mind, and wallet versus having him spread all amongst ESPN and their competitors. Furthermore, ESPN would like Joe to select ESPN as main Sports Information source across all channels, upselling him to The Magazine, and maybe even ESPN 36o.
“Hi, my name is Joe.”
“It’s been six days since I became a persona….”
The class of grad students I teach as an adjunct lecturer at Northwestern University’s Medill School created “Joe.” For many, it was their first stab at a persona.
It seems the persona has become all the rage amongst social media strategies…but has been utilized for some time now by content marketers, and even longer (I’d reckon) by traditional agencies (we were using them at Burnett back in the mid-80’s, though I don’t recall labeling them as personas at the time….).
The key today, of course, is to utilize the persona for above and beyond solely the creative target. Ideally, personas are created for all customer segments, and used in new user profiling, content testing, and to lead discovery in the listening phases of social media planning.
Personas provide more robust targeting and segmentation, above and beyond demographics, psychographics, and even transactional behaviors. By bringing your target to life, you bring your marketing to life.
Have you met Joe yet?