Working with so-called personas is a trendy way to develop marketing strategy based on making strategic choices around target markets. It’s closely related to overall strategy and marketing strategy. It’s a good tool for developing your marketing tactics.

Try to imagine in detail your absolute ideal buyer. Experts call this working with a persona. Give her age, family, education, job, and commuting habits. Know what kind of car he drives, what websites she likes, and what he watches on TV. Know her politics. Know what he reads. The more you know this person, the better to manage your market message and media.

Make sure you understand this person’s underlying buying decision. Understand the real needs. With restaurants, for example, the needs and wants involved in an expensive low-lighting romantic meal for two are very different from those involved in a quick cheap drive-through hamburger happy meal. Free yourself of features, and think of benefits. Tell yourself the story of how this person finds your business, what he is looking for, and why that matters to her.

For individuals as customers, you probably want to know their average age, income levels, family size, media preferences, buying patterns, and whatever else you can learn that relates to your business.

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