Everyone Is Not Your Customer: Why Customer Personas Are Critical To Your Marketing

Tell me if this scenario sounds eerily familiar.

You’re at an event and you strike up a conversation with a fellow businessperson. You ask them their name, where they work, and what they do. Then you ask, “who are your customers?” and they gleefully (and ignorantly) mutter the word that crushes every marketer’s soul… “E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E!”

Let me be clear… unless you’re selling a vaccine that cures a disease that 100% of the world population has, “everyone” is never an acceptable answer to that question. Seth Godin, the world’s top marketing mind, is quoted as saying, “everyone is not your customer.”

While everyone might benefit from your product, let’s be real: it’s impractical to believe that everyone will be interested in buying it. But the biggest issue to the “everyone” answer is that it can massively stifle your marketing efforts by spreading them too widely (or as the saying goes, “a mile wide and an inch deep”).

When everyone is your customer, then no one is. People are so unique and varied that not having a specific list of customer types (customer personas) makes your marketing too vague and therefore ineffective.

Instead, a far more fruitful practice is to create a handful of customer personas that fit the profiles of your ideal clients. These profiles can include your clients’ demographics, frustration points, internal and external drivers, common objections, goals, and so much more. With these in hand, you can target a very specific type of person with your marketing—one that’s tailored specifically to their needs/frustrations and how your product addresses them.

Not only is this going to boost your marketing efforts instantaneously, but it’ll also save you the next time you’re asked, “who is your customer?”

PS - if you’re interested in creating a customer persona, check out this blog post by Neil Patel: https://neilpatel.com/blog/accurate-customer-personas/