Targeting Buyer Personas —Dana
Your sales approach and marketing materials need to be very different for this category of print buyer. Show them you appreciate the challenges they face in learning a new industry, and you could endear them to you.
SOHO buyers are a different persona altogether. Most people who work in small offices and/or home offices need printing done at one time or another. Stationery, flyers, marketing materials and product sell sheets are some typical examples. Their budgets are smaller than those of corporate customers. Printing is necessary to them—but foreign. They haven't a clue where to find printers, and don't intend to spend a lot of time and effort doing so.
They need special attention and education from printers. These customers may be business owners or perhaps assistants to owners. Everything they know about printing, they learn from advertising. Many identify "printers" with desktop printers.
Imagine you have no experience working with this industry and have to find a printer to produce business materials. How would you go about it? That's what this group experiences. They'll ask friends and colleagues for names of printers, or they'll skip this step entirely and source printing with an e-commerce site or at one of the big box stores, such as Staples, Office Max, Office Depot or FedEx Office.
Now that you're aware of the different types of print buyers, what should it mean to you, as printers? That you need to understand the prospect you're appealing to.
When you're marketing your firm's services to a new prospect, a recommended first step is determining how much or how little professional experience that person has. The answer should trigger your specific approach. PI
About the Author
Margie Dana is the founder of Print Buyers International (www.printbuyersinternational.com), which offers educational and networking opportunities to those who work with the printing industry. She produces an annual print buyers conference (www.printbuyersconference.com) and has written her popular e-column, "Margie's Print Tips," since 1999. Dana speaks regularly at trade events worldwide and offers consulting services as a print buyer specialist. She can be reached at mdana@printbuyers international.com.