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Content Karma: Crappy Personas = Crappy Content!
By Wayne Cerullo

I was going through some old family photos the other day. Wonderful memories of days long ago that I am digitizing to ward off the ravages of time. But, in one sense, I was preserving the ravages of time.

Unfortunately, the copy can never be better than the original. A poorly-shot blurry old snapshot will still be a bad picture even in 600 DPI digital form!

So it is with personas and the content marketing that comes from them. Mark Schaefer noted the same thing in a recent post arguing that “customer personas may be an outdated marketing technique”… but his advice is to not bother taking any photos!

The Rules of Content Karma

Mark notes that “manufacturing scripted content gets in the way of real customer connection”. True. But why manufacture scripted content in the first place?

Crappy personas WILL yield crappy content. But the opposite is also true! So let’s take better photos! Adele Revella of the Buyer Persona Institute makes the same point in her post – we need quality persona models to create quality content. It’s just good karma.

Key to Good Content Karma

So how do you create good content karma? Inform and inspire your content creators with authentic, vibrant personas based on authentic, insightful research with your best prospects. Your content will be as compelling as your personas.

If your personas are not making your content better, you need better personas. Because your content is getting the same response from your external prospects that your personas are getting from your internal content team.

Free Guide to Great Prospect Photography

  1. Use a good camera with a good lens. Conduct in-depth, exploratory research focused on understanding how and why your prospects choose you… or not. As basic as this seems, our research reveals that only 63% of marketers conduct primary research to create their personas.
  2. Don’t shoot before you’ve composed your shot. Great photographs tell a story. Have a point. Great personas don’t just describe a role – they tell a story about desire, an obstacle, and a resolution. We call that story a Key Prospect Insight.
  3. Mount in a quality frame. Create personas that engage and inspire your team. Write them well with great material. That’s the point of personas… to bring your prospects “to life”!

If you’d like some free advice about a bunch of fuzzy personas you might have in an “old drawer”, feel free to call. The dark room is open.

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