Do you want to start using personas but don’t know how to start? Do you find multiple personas types confusing? Read the article and learn more about the value of personas and how to create them.
The value of personas
If you’re delivering a product, no matter whether it’s digital or not, you need to know who your users or customers are. You need to know what they like, how they behave, what their habits are, etc. All this information will help you understand your users better and make your design process more effective. What else will personas support you in? They will guide your decisions on the design of a product or service and help you communicate with stakeholders. One mental model of target customers shared with others will make your work easier.
The process of creating a persona has several steps. Remember that it should have a reference to research and data. If you are only basing on your assumptions, your persona is only hypothetical, what means, it is a proto-persona. Note also that creating your personas only once is not enough. People evolve, and their behavior changes, so remember to update your personas regularly. Here are a few steps that may help you in the creation process:
- Define your objectives and discuss them with other stakeholders
- Collect current data
- Decide how you want to collect new data
- Conduct interviews/surveys/focus groups etc.
- Analyze results and share them with other stakeholders
- Create insight statements
- Decide on number and types of personas and prioritize them
- Shape your personas and share them within your organization
Remember that personas should be useful to you and the rest of your organization. Make them visible and use them in making decisions about your product or service.
Types of personas
There are many types of personas. Here are a few examples:
- Task-based persona & JTBD (when users are trying to get something done and use certain products or services in order to make progress towards accomplishing goals)
- Role-based persona (when users are focusing on the role they have in the organization)
- Global persona (when users represent different cultures)
- Antipersona (when a user uses a product in the wrong way)
Obviously, these are not all types of personas. Your persona should be adjusted to your business and your product or service. It also depends on the data you use to create the persona. If you still have doubts about how to start, use templates available in Miro, Mural, Smaply, Venngage, or other tools.
Just get started
You may think creating a persona is complicated and time-consuming, but don’t let your doubts stop you. You don’t have to plan long-term research. 3-4 interviews or a survey with a few questions are better than none. Think about the benefits that you and your organization can get. If you want to learn more about personas, watch the recording of our webinar:
The webinar was conducted by Joelle Stemp, UX-PM trainer, CEO at Yu Centrik (Canada), and Rajesh Ghodke, UX-PM trainer and Head of Design at PeepalDesign (India). The whole recording is available for members of the UX-PM Alumni Community. If you have completed at least one level of Certification, you can join here: I’M JOINING.