Defining your company's buyer personas is a great way to better understand how and why your buyers make their purchasing decisions. You can then build content that supports them in those decisions. However, we often miss opportunities to learn more about our personas by not tagging our contacts with their relevant persona.

When you're creating a persona in HubSpot, start by developing a profile about them using buyer research and observations from your internal staff. This profile can then be added to HubSpot via your marketing dashboard's Top Personas report.

As a HubSpot Classroom Trainer, I usually see a lot of customers who have designed these buyer personas in HubSpot and are ready to take the next step towards using them to gain even more information about their contacts. This requires using processes in HubSpot that can update your contact's "persona" property when they show certain behaviors or input from information that aligns them with a particular persona.

Below are 4 different methods you can use to update the Persona property in your HubSpot account.

 

Manually Update or Import in Bulk

The Persona property works similarly to any other contact property in that you have the ability to manually update it on a contact-by-contact basis. While this probably is the most laborious method, it's certainly an option.

If you already know your existing contacts' personas, you can update them in bulk using an import. To format your import, be sure to have a column for their email address and another column to include the information you entered in the "persona description" field when you created your persona as shown below. The contacts that already exist will de-duplicate based on their email address, and their persona field will be updated.

Screen Shot 2017-11-03 at 12.27.14 PM

Screen Shot 2017-11-03 at 12.27.14 PM

 

Self-Select in a Form

If you don't have information about which contacts should be assigned to certain personas, you can let them self-select their persona in a form. Persona, like any contact property, can be included in the forms your leads fill out to download content, subscribe, or request more information.

When you're creating your form, use the field's tab in the editor to select the Persona field/contact property and add it to your form. 

persona-form-field

By default, the label for that field will read Persona, so you should edit it to read something like, "I describe myself as" or "I am a(an)." You can also modify the labels for the options your visitor can choose from. Their selection in the form submission will update their "persona" contact property to represent the persona that they self-selected.

 

Hidden Form Field

If the Persona field is one too many fields than your leads are willing to fill out, you can use the hidden field method. Chances are you have certain content offers or forms that are solely meant for just one of your buyer personas. In this case, you wouldn't really need them to fill out the persona information in a form. By having them fill out the form in the first place, you know what their persona should be.

If this is true for you, in your forms tool, you'll be able to hide the persona field and select one persona as default for that specific form. For the visitor, they'll just see First name, Last name, Email, etc. However, when they click Submit, their First name, Last name, Email, and Persona properties will be updated on their contact record.

hidden persona

 

Workflow

The most effective way of assigning personas is using workflows. Using the workflows tool, you can automate things like contact property updates, email sends, internal notifications, and more. Use this tool to assign personas based on more than just one form-driven behavior. This will require creating separate workflows for each persona to update contacts' persona property when they take any number of distinguishable actions.

Enrolling contacts is very similar to how you bring contacts into a list. Using the provided filters, you can include contacts that have certain values in properties, viewed particular pages, clicked specific CTAs, opened individual emails, or filled out certain forms.

Using this data, you can isolate a group of contacts that should be automatically marked with a particular persona when they complete one of these behaviors. Typically, these behaviors will be separated by "or" logic instead of "and" logic in the tool as a way of saying, "If a contact takes ANY of these actions, enroll them in the workflow." View this knowledge article if you would like more information on how to select the right filters for your enrollment.

If you would like to update existing contacts in your HubSpot account, be sure to select the Enroll contacts who already meet this criteria checkbox at the bottom of the enrollment editing box.

arrow enroll

Once you've completed your enrollment, add an action to your workflow called Set contact property value. When modifying your action, you'll need to select the Persona contact property and the persona you're assigning with this workflow. After reviewing your workflow, simply turn it on using the toggle at the top right-hand side.

action

 

What's Next?

With your HubSpot personas now applied to the appropriate contacts, you can start sending more segmented emails like a pro and filter your reports to gain insights about your personas' behaviors and commonalities.

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Originally published Nov 15, 2017 10:00:00 AM, updated November 26 2018