Brand Insights

For Health Science Executives

Using Marketing Personas To Engage Your Life Science Audience

Using Marketing Personas To Engage Your Life Science Audience

By Karan Cushman, July 31, 2015

How understanding the person you want to reach can help you become a better communicator and inspire a potential customer to action.

Biomedical and Life Science companies have many target audiences – internal stakeholders, principal investigators, lab managers, technicians, scientific partners, investors, and even the general public at times. Getting to know your exact audience through Personas can help your Communications team go deeper and discover what really inspires the people you need to reach.

At Cushman Creative, we constantly work to understand what makes a target audience tick so we can communicate more clearly with them. We start with a specific list of questions and the answers enable us to formulate a character sketch or “Persona.” A Persona offers more detail about the individual, which moves us from talking at an abstract target audience to speaking with people—real people we could actually talk to over coffee.

We start the process of defining Personas by writing down what we know about our target audience (including basic demographics) and answering questions like the following:

Are the researchers we are targeting technicians or directors?
Are they primarily men or women?
How passionate are they about their work?
What makes them good at their job?
What daily pressures do they face?
How much energy do they devote to their area of study when they are not in the lab?
What are their pain points at work?
What would make their work, their lives easier?

The goal of answering questions like these is to form a crystal-clear picture of each Persona. From here you can more accurately find the point where your offering intersects with their individual needs.  

Defining Personas before you create your Bioresearch brand’s messaging can help you avoid the trap of imposing wants and needs on your audience. Instead, you will discover ways in which your brand can genuinely help them.

In the event your campaign has a public interest component and you are targeting the general public, you may have to work a little harder in crafting those personas. Basic demographics such as gender, age, geographic location, level of education and income are important, but you’ll need to go deeper to assess awareness and relevance of your brand or activities.

Are they already interested in the Life Sciences?
Why or why not?
How much do they know about your particular company or area of research?
If the answer is nothing, how does the research you do impact their lives?

If you have several audiences (for instance, researchers and the public), you will need to do the exercise twice to make sure you have defined each audience separately.

When you are creating Personas, there is no such thing as too much information. You can conduct surveys or use public data to find out more if you are lacking detail. Getting a full understanding of the types of people your Life Science company wants to reach will inform how you choose to communicate with them and make your marketing or PR campaign that much more impactful.

Once you have defined your Personas, your next step will be to define your offer. To jumpstart your team and your next campaign check out this post and learn how to Clarify Your Bioresearch Brand’s Goals with a Messaging Platform.


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