How Can a Startup Create a Customer Persona?

5 Min Read
How Can a Startup Create a Customer Persona?

Startup new business problems in 2020. Creating your business customer persona!

Every show we visit, every article we read and every podcast we listen to always tells us to come up with a customer persona! We have been stuck at this step for the last year as a startup you know very little about who your customers might be. We see the product usefulness in many industries and everyone in the World uses checklists, don’t they?

Every time we are asked “do you know your customer persona” we look blankly and say “everyone”. This answer we know is the wrong answer. But in our mind, everyone can be helped by checklists and something we have all used and been an essential productivity and safety tool throughout history. Even if it is just to remind us of important steps or jolt the memory.

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So what is a Customer Persona?

In a nutshell your “perfect” customer. Yes, I know your instant response to this how can you define a perfect customer? Isn’t every customer perfect who wants to use or buy your product? Or is it just luck? Can you make this “luck” spread?

Finding the “measurable characteristics of a target customer” will be like winning the lottery. But how well do you know your customers? Understanding the whole concept is one thing but defining who you are targeting? Which markets you are aiming for? Is another!

These insights offer a window into how your customer makes decisions, specific needs, concerns and most crucial in building a successful business the criteria that drive prospective customers to choose you, over your competitor.

Now, these personas shouldn’t be based on pot luck or guessing but on data and facts but when you are starting out you don’t have this data so how do you get started? This has been puzzling us for ages and we need to have a starting point even if these change as we grow the business.

Perfect Customer Persona is US

That eureka moment waking up this morning to realise our perfect user persona is actually us!! Yes, you heard it right we want to market and find people like us!!

So how do we define ourselves? Are there people out there like us? Is it right to try and market and plan a business around us?

So Who Are We Looking For?

Right people like us… Our key traits are, scary to be honest but here goes.

  • Perfectionist
  • Control Freak
  • Perfectionist Control Freak
  • Forgetful
  • Forgetful Perfectionist
  • Cake Lover

Perfectionist – Got to get it right every time!
Like things done and run perfectly all day every day.

Control Freak – Find it hard to delegate.
Trust issues – Find it hard to trust a member of the team to do it how you want it done.

Perfectionist Control Freak – Constantly watching and analysing in your mind how something can be improved.

Forgetful – Mind too busy to remember everything.

Forgetful Perfectionist – Beat yourself up when something so simple is missed in your perfect World.

Cake Lover – oops not sure key point unless patisserie

Recipe to Success

Customers are the driving force for any business without them, well we wouldn’t exist. Better understanding how they think, walk in their shoes and create a small secret window into their minds, really enabling you to market to them directly.

We like to compare everything in life to cake and customer persona is your recipe for success, your checklist of ingredients to find the perfect customer.

So how do you identify your audience?

How do you identify your audience when you dont have any customers to base it on? Wondering where on earth you’re supposed to begin?

Well, think that you are creating a character in a book. Creation of a semi-fictional archetype that represents the key traits of your audience. It is about developing a deep understanding of your potential customer’s needs.

Personas are a great tool to target and develop a brand design that is user-centric. Over time focus has shifted to the importance of the customer experience, and can be used to achieve that goal.

It must always relate to your business and the goals and tasks customers are trying to complete using your product/website.

Customer Persona Checklist

Personal demographics

A personal picture of your perfect customer. Male, female or both? How old are they? Income level?

Education & Career

What level of education did they complete? How did they end up where they are today? What is your current role/position? Role within the business?

Industry or Industries & Companies

The type of service they deliver to their clients can help measure your impact in the markets you’re targeting. Size and number of employees within the business.


Communication preference. Demeanour.

Goals and Challenges

Primary and Secondary

Role and responsibilities

Can you help achieve their goals and overcome a pain point? How do they measure success?

Knowledge & Tools

Which applications and tools do they use every day? Identify what they love (and hate) and compare to your own product.

How can you help?

Know the biggest challenges faced by your persona so you know you are solving a certain problem for your target customer. How does that problem affect their day-to-day working life?

Try build a marketing persona using the 5Ws and 1H.

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