Do I Need Buyer Personas in Sitefinity's Digital Experience Cloud?
By: Travis Shafer
The way the Sitefinity Digital Experience Cloud (DEC) works is by giving points to your website’s visitors based on their actions. When the points reach a certain threshold, the DEC categorizes the visitors as one type of persona or another. These persona categories are designed to reflect the site visitors’ intentions. What pages are visited and what interactions take place on those pages give the DEC clues about which of your products or services the visitor is interested in.
Someone could, for instance, come to Aptera’s website through a link on Sitefinity’s partner page, and we could have a rule that gives this person a pre-specified number of points toward being identified as a potential web development client. (We actually do use such a rule.) If the site visitor later navigates to more web-related pages, that person gets more points—until he or she reaches the threshold we’ve set. Then the DEC categorizes that visitor as belonging to our web development persona.
So the DEC uses a more empirical approach to personas. But does that mean you don’t have to create old-fashioned Buyer Personas? Does it mean, in other words, you don’t have to do all the research and conduct all the interviews that go into traditional personas?
Sadly, that’s not what it means. While you could simply set up the rules for your DEC personas without first creating detailed Buyer Personas, you probably wouldn’t get nearly as much out of the tool that way. For that matter, you probably wouldn’t get nearly as much out of your website that way, or your digital marketing in general.
Why Traditional Buyer Personas Are Still Important
You’ll still need to know what questions your potential customers have, so you can write content that answers those questions. You’ll still need to know what their web surfing and social media browsing habits are, so you can choose the most effective channels for getting your stuff in front of them. You’ll still want to know what new questions come up as they progress along the buyer’s journey, so you can offer them the right content for the right stage.
You’ll also want to know something about your prospects’ tastes and goals—because you need that information to design your website. Finally, detailed and well-researched Buyer Personas will come in handy when you’re trying to decide what your DEC rules should look like.
What Does the DEC Do then?
About Travis Shafer
Digital Marketing Guru. Travis has been in the marketing field for over 14 years. He started doing graphic design, moved into web design and eventually to SEO, Social, and PPC. He has additional skills in HTML, CSS, PHP and video production. He is a member of the Ivy Tech VISC Advisory Committee, Google, Bing, and Hubspot certified.