Get To Know Your Diners With Customer Personas
Business owners must face a harsh truth: Not everyone wants to buy what you’re selling. Trying too hard to appeal to everyone can dilute your allure to your most likely diners. Since you’ll never convince everyone to eat at your restaurants, your time and money are best spent on those most likely to visit. The trick is to find them.
You may be familiar with the concept of buyer personas or customer avatars. Both terms refer to a fictional character representing the customers most likely to visit your business. Buyer personas go beyond target demographics to help you understand who your customer is and what motivates them.
A buyer persona (or diner persona) aims to get as specific as possible. Generally, marketers go so far as to give their personas names and images. While age, gender, and income are essential components, a persona must dig deeper. You should know their family structure, whether they work, why and how often they eat out, and what factors they consider in choosing a restaurant. Are they price-conscious or looking to splurge? Are they primarily focused on raising a family or building a career? Do they want a human interaction or a no-fuss transaction?
In other words, you’ll need to dive deep into your market research. The most effective tactics will involve surveying your existing customers for their preferences and habits. It’s not as difficult as you think. A 2022 PWC survey found 82% of customers are willing to share some personal information for a better customer experience. A 10% discount will probably make your poll even more enticing.
Remember, personas are distinct with easily identifiable characteristics — your business should almost certainly have more than one. For example, your customer base might include Cindy, a busy mother who values healthy options but doesn’t have time to cook, and Jason, a young professional who prizes convenience and taste over nutritional value. Understanding their unique motivations will allow you to market and serve them better.
Personas will help you decide where and how you advertise, but they can do more. Your staff should know about your hypothetical Cindy and Jason, too. With the proper training, they’ll learn to recognize different personas in the wild and offer tailored services and experiences to keep them coming back.