In today’s competitive and technologically advanced environment, companies all over the world are using call recording for a variety of purposes. From ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements to assistance with dispute resolution or order verification, recorded calls can play a vital role in helping an organization achieve its strategic goals and support its day-to-day operations.
In addition to the more obvious uses of recorded calls, there’s also what some would consider “outside the box” ways that recorded calls can deliver value to an organization. One such way: crafting customer personas.
Just what is a customer persona? According to the Buyer Persona Institute, an organization devoted to helping organizations craft personas to achieve their sales and marketing objectives, the precise definition is: “An example of the real person who buys, or might buy, products like the ones you market, based on what you’ve learned from direct interviews with real buyers.”
In simple terms, the ability to craft a customer persona can bring to life your target buyers in a way that can help your staff see inside the minds of these individuals. Customers are no longer amorphous entities or vague abstractions – they’re actual people, with specific interests, needs, preferences, and problems. And with the correct buyer personas you have captured the true essence of who you are selling to and this can go a long way toward increasing sales, executing more targeted marketing campaigns and providing more customized service.
In order to develop useful, valuable customer personas, you need information. It’s certainly not always possible – or even advisable – to reach out to actual customers and interrogate them about their buying habits, geographic location, special concerns, and the like. But when you use call recording software, you probably possess that insight already through the calls that are handled by your customer-facing agents. These calls provide a treasure-trove of data from which to craft customer personas -- and vital information that can be passed along to your sales and marketing teams.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to using recorded calls for this purpose:
- Step 1: Flag Calls -- Request that your customer-facing phone staff flag calls from customers that express specific interests, personality traits, buyer behaviors, demographic data, or pain points.
- Step 2: Listen to Recorded Calls -- Have your marketing department listen to these flagged calls. This can be done as a team activity or by individuals. Consider establishing a regular interval for listening to these calls – perhaps every quarter, month, or even week. For organizations with fairly static products and markets, once every six months may suffice.
- Step 3: Create Personas -- Ask the marketing team to come together and develop real, working customer personas to describe your target customers very specifically.
- Step 4: Use Personas in Marketing/Sales -- Challenge your marketing and sales teams to use these personas to more accurately execute programs that will attract these individuals and ultimately prompt them to buy from you.
- Step 5: Repeat as Necessary -- As you introduce new products/services or enter new markets, make sure to repeat these steps. As your products and services change, so will your customer personas. Make sure you keep current with them.
Accurate customer personas can help your marketing and sales forces succeed, both by helping you attract new customers and ensuring you keep your current ones.
Here is a HubSpot blog post that goes into customer personas in detail and even provides a link to download a customer persona template.