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7 Persona Examples for Modeling Your Ideal Customer

Before you launch a marketing campaign, you need to learn about your ideal customer. Creating personas is a helpful way to understand who your users are, what motivates them, and ultimately what they need. Once you have this information, you can create content that speaks directly to your best-fit future customers.

Table of contents

  1. User persona
  2. Buyer persona
  3. Customer persona
  4. Proto persona
  5. Audience persona
  6. Marketing persona
  7. Student persona
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Information to include in personas

When creating personas, there are a few key pieces of information that you'll want to include:

  • Name
  • Description
  • Demographics (age, gender, location, etc.)
  • Customer needs
  • Motivations
  • Pain points
  • Their journey through your customer cycle

7 Persona Examples

1. User persona example - Best for evaluating all users of a product

Let’s say you’re developing an app to help people budget their money. You have a free platform and a paid tier. A user persona can help you look at all users regardless of if they buy your paid tier or not, if they were the ones that decided to acquire it, no matter if it required payment or not.


Name: Sarah

Description: Sarah is a young professional working in the financial sector. She's looking for ways to save money and invest for her future and wants a company that can help inform her about her options.

Demographics:
  • Age: 25
  • Gender: Woman
  • Location: New York City, NY
  • Education: Bachelor’s Degree
  • Job Title: Financial Analyst
  • Income: $60,000-$150,000
  • Family Life: Hoping to settle down in the next 5-10 years

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: Ways to save money and receive investment advice
  • Motivations: Wants to be financially secure enough to retire early
  • Pain Points: Rachel worries about her future. She often feels like she doesn’t have enough money saved up and is confused about how to invest it.
  • Persona's journey: Sarah is just starting to think about her financial future. She's doing research online and reading articles to learn more about her options. It’s best for your company to establish an online presence that can first answer Rachel’s basic questions, then onboard her to your free tool, then hopefully convert her into a paid user.
An example of a user persona

2. Buyer persona example - Best for businesses looking at their ideal customers holistically

Let’s say you’ve launched a website to help experienced professionals network and improve their career. Your business’s ideal customer is someone who could use peer advice and wants to hone their already great skills.


Name: John

Description: John is a middle-aged man who owns his own business. He's looking for ways to improve his business, but doesn't have a lot of time to go to events, conferences, or network with others. 

Demographics:

  • Age: 45
  • Gender: Man
  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
  • Education: Bachelor’s Degree
  • Job Title: Owner
  • Income: $100,000-$175,000
  • Family Life: Partner and 1-2 kids

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: Tips on how to improve his business. Information on the latest business trends
  • Motivations: Wants his business to grow 5x in the next 10 years
  • Pain Points: Not having enough time. Feeling like he's behind the times
  • Persona's journey: John reads articles and listens to podcasts from trusted thought leaders when he can, but doesn't have a lot of time to make connections with them. John is most likely to find your company via social media or a search engine. It’s best for you to have an active social media presence and interact with users so he can see your networking platform is a valuable time investment. 
Example of a buyer persona

 

Create a customizable buyer persona in minutes using our free Make My Persona  tool.

3. Customer persona example - Best for retention of existing customers

Let's say you're developing a customer persona for a luxury car company. Your company’s brand is closely tied with high status members of society. Once a customer purchases a first luxury car from you, they often expand their collection.

Name: Robert

Description: Robert owns multiple companies and often takes clients out for meals to close his deals. An expensive car can add credibility to his personal brand, exemplifying that he is a talented businessman. 

Demographics
  • Gender: Man
  • Age: 40
  • Location: Washington, DC
  • Education: Master’s Degree
  • Job Title: CEO/Executive
  • Income: $500,000+
  • Family Life: 3 children 

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: Maintain credibility with his clientele
  • Motivations: Wants to be perceived as high class and successful
  • Pain Points: Client base may doubt his success as a businessman if he isn’t outwardly displaying his money. A new car every couple of years can help satisfy this pain point.
  • Persona’s Journey: Robert is often exposed to your products via members in his social circles. He comes into your dealership for maintenance and will chat with his favorite sales representative when he’s interested in buying another car. Having top notch customer service and communication should be a priority to you.
An example of a customer persona

 

4. Proto persona example - Best for businesses establishing their ideal customer archetype

A proto persona is an archetype or idealized version of your target customer. It is similar to a buyer persona.

Let's say you own a business that sells eco-friendly home goods at affordable prices. Your target audience might be young families who are interested in living a green lifestyle.

Name: Emma

Emma is preparing to become a new mom and wants to use safe and natural products in her home once her children arrive. She’s cognizant of the environmental impact home goods and cleaning products can have, so she’s often looking for companies that value sustainability.

Demographics:
  • Gender: Woman
  • Age: 25-34
  • Location: Seattle, WA
  • Education: Bachelor’s Degree
  • Job Title: Store Manager
  • Income: $50,000-$75,000
  • Family Life: Married with children on the way

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: Eco-friendly, safe home products
  • Motivations: Provide a healthy, active lifestyle for her future family
  • Pain Points: Eco-friendly products can be out of Emma’s price range. It’s time consuming to research the ingredients of all home and cleaning goods.
  • Persona’s Journey: Packaging that clearly outlines your products ingredients and benefits are a necessity for a busy future mom like Emma. Additionally, producing educational content on where you source your products allows Emma to trust your brand quicker. Content marketing and product design is where you should invest your budget.
An example of a proto persona

 

5. Audience Persona Example: Best for Businesses that Emphasize Data-Driven Insights

An audience persona is a semi-fictional representation of your target audience. It's based on market research and real data about your ideal customer.

Let’s say you own a cosmetics company that is known for creating and distributing samples of makeup for customers to try. You want to understand who your target audience and may create a persona like the one below:

Name: Rachel

Description: Rachel cares most about her career, her appearance, and her social life. She loves to get ready for her day but doesn’t enjoy the amount of time it takes to put on her makeup and fix her hair. Rachel is most interested in products that can make her life easier or help her save time.

Demographics:
  • Gender: Woman
  • Age: 35
  • Location: Austin, TX
  • Education: Bachelor’s Degree
  • Job Title: Marketing Manager
  • Income: $80,000-$120,000
  • Family Life: No partner or children at the moment

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: High quality cosmetics and skincare products to maintain her appearance
  • Motivations: Retaining a youthful look
  • Pain Points: It’s difficult to try makeup before you buy the entire product. Rachel is unsure which brands to trust since there are so many
  • Persona’s Journey: Rachel trusts social media and YouTube videos from influencers the most. The best way to reach Rachel is to double-down on influencer marketing. After she becomes a customer, she will likely promote your products on her own social media.
Create a customizable buyer persona in minutes using our free Make My Persona  tool.

6. Marketing Persona Example - Best for Marketing Departments

Tell The Reader More

A marketing persona is pretty similar to a buyer persona but can be considered even more general.

Let’s say you own a bookstore that specializes in business and self-help books.

Name: David

Description: David is a late bloomer who successfully scaled his company and loves reading international business success stories. He often buys books that are recommended to him on podcasts or by thought leaders on LinkedIn.

Demographics:
  • Gender: Man
  • Age: 58
  • Location: Orlando, FL
  • Education: Doctorate Degree
  • Job Title: Business Owner
  • Income: $200,00-300,000
  • Family Life: Married

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: Keep tabs on evolving business and industry trends
  • Motivations: Learning for learning’s sake. Appearing educated to his colleagues
  • Pain Points: Running his company does not give him time to research what’s going on in the world.
  • Persona’s Journey: David listens to multiple business podcasts and trusts the businesses advertised on each podcast. Your best way to reach David initially is through advertising. You can make David a repeat customer by nurturing him through email marketing–sending discount codes via email occasionally.

7. Student Persona Example

A student persona is a fictional representation of an ideal student you wish to enroll.

Let’s say you’ve just started a jewelry school. Because of your tight budget, you minimize overhead costs and need to market your learning business cheaply.

Name: Brittany

Description: Brittany is a college-age woman who wants to stay on all the top trends. She likes to spent her money on small businesses that she finds on social media and wishes to learn new skills.

Demographics:
  • Gender: Woman
  • Age: 22
  • Location: Lansing, MI
  • Education: Currently in college
  • Job Title: Student
  • Income: $10,000-30,000
  • Family Life: Single

Struggles your product/service could address:
  • Needs: Affordable items
  • Motivations: Keep up appearances on social media and in social groups at school
  • Pain Points: Her income is limited as she’s a full-time student. Her location makes it difficult to shop at stores commonly in cities.
  • Persona’s Journey: Brittany finds most of her clothes and accessories on TikTok or Instagram. Interaction with brands, high quality product images, and ability to return items are important to her as she does mostly online shopping. You should lean into short-form, high-quality videos to market your product.
Make My Persona

What are the 4 types of personas?

There are four main persona types that businesses need to take into account when optimizing their products and services:

  • The proto persona is an idealized version of the target customer. This persona is based on market research and is used to help businesses understand what their target customers want and need.
  • The customer persona is a more realistic representation of the target customer. This persona includes information about the customer's demographics, behaviors, and needs.
  • The user persona is a fictional character that represents the typical user of a product or service. This persona helps businesses understand how users interact with their products or services.
  • The buyer persona is a fictional character that represents the target market for a product or service. This persona helps businesses understand the needs and wants of their target market–people who both use and buy their product or service.