Choosing The Right Content Forms For Your Target Personas

Tami Wessley
Posted by Tami Wessley on July 24, 2013


Once you decide that you’re going to act like a publisher and share content that attracts prospects – and provides so much value that they’re willing to give you their contact information in exchange – the key is determining which form that publication will take in order to provide the greatest value and add fuel to your Inbound Marketing efforts. With so many options available (everything from tip sheets and comparison charts to whitepapers and videos), you need to find the form with the greatest likelihood of persuading your target – and that does the best job of communicating your message.


A good first step in creating a library of great content is to identify existing materials you can repurpose – sellsheets, testimonials, interviews, customer feedback surveys, product demos, research findings, industry articles, comparison sheets, and company presentations, to name a few.

The next step is to determine the type of content you’ll repurpose it into. Should the sellsheet be recreated as a video or a side-by-side comparison with a competitor’s product? Should your survey results be turned into a brief or a longer whitepaper? Should your project brief be turned into a case study or a tip sheet?

One method for deciding the format to present to your personas is to look at their personality types and understanding how they learn, what type of information persuades them, and what objections they may have.

Most prospects will fall into one of these four personality categories:

Detail-oriented, logical thinkers: These left-brained people are pathologically organized, and look for facts and figures to guide their decisions. They see a clearly defined path, use the phrase “prove it to me” and dislike “what-if” pondering.

The best content choices for this group:

  • case studies
  • white papers
  • research studies
  • side-by-side comparisons with competitors
  • demos/trials

Results-focused trouble-shooters: This group thrives on facts but really dislikes routine and structure; they will look to non-traditional sources to find relevant information. Unlike the first group, these knowledge seekers learn best in hands-on environments and want to understand the “why” as well as the “how.”

The best content choices for this group:

  • tip sheets
  • testimonials or case studies
  • white papers
  • videos or webinars

Touchy-feely, relationship-driven: This group values and looks to its experiences and personal relationships before it will rely on regurgitated facts and research findings. This group tends to be more spontaneous and dislikes theory and long-winded explanations.

The best content choices for this group:

  • stories
  • videos
  • interactive demos

Future-oriented, decisive multi-taskers: It’s tough to hold the attention of this bunch for long. They know precisely what they’re looking for, are impatient and want to be able to quickly turn knowledge into actionable plans. They tend to be innovative and prefer to lead. When it comes to content, they skim for pertinent points rather than reading deeply.

The best content choices for this group:

  • short but relevant case studies
  • videos
  • executive summaries
  • interactive calculators

Creating the right content forms isn’t a cut-and-dried formula, and is influenced by the message you want to send, but understanding your targets’ mindsets gives you a better chance of reaching them with your message and persuading them to buy.

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Topics: Content Marketing

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