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Data-Driven Personas Personas

Using Data-Driven Personas for Enhanced User Segmentation

User segmentation is the practice of dividing potential or existing users into groups that share similar characteristics. As such, user segments go hand in hand with data-driven personas! 

User segmentation is employed as a user understanding technique by nearly every product team. Think of it this way! The ultimate goal of product design or product strategy for that matter is to create products/services that:

  1. are aimed at understanding user needs and pain points as best as possible, 
  2. have essential features to solve the users’ primary needs as best as possible. 

In order to be able to identify user needs and pain points and serve them well, it is essential to have a good understanding of your user/customer base. Both user segmentation and data-driven personas can aid in this understanding.

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Data-Driven Personas Persona Analytics Personas Segment Analytics

Making Meaningful User Segments from Datasets Using Product Dissemination and Product Impact

Making Meaningful User Segments from Datasets Using Product Dissemination and Product Impact
Making Meaningful User Segments from Datasets Using Product Dissemination and Product Impact

As paper-based personas move to interactive persona analytics systems, online companies face large user populations, making segmentation a daunting exercise, along with creating actionable data-driven personas from these large datasets.

In this research, we demonstrate an approach that facilitates user segmentation. The approach leverages product dissemination and product impact metrics with normalized Shannon entropy. 

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Google Analytics Personas Segment Analytics Use of Personas

Personas with Segment Analytics (Part 2)

The following is a post from the APG Team’s summer 2020 intern, Jaad Mohammed.
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Note: For a complete overview of Google Analytics persona creation methods, see Persona Creation Using Google Analytics: Summary of Methods

Example of an APG Persona
Example of an APG Persona – from numbers to persona in a matter of hours! Or less!

To continue with our discussion from Personas with Segment Analytics (Part 1), to perform a persona inspired segmentation using your web analytics tool (here we are using Google Analytics for our platform as an example), these are some details about your customers you would need to gather which will be later used to create personas:

  1. Age and Gender: You can see the breakdown of your audience by their ages if you navigate to Audience>Demographics>Overview

We will use the age group with largest demographics to make our 1st persona. For more information about this group. We shall find affinities of this user group.

  1. Affinity: For this we will expand Age >  Secondary Dimension, Within Secondary dimension, type “Affinity”.

Now you can see the categories associated to your 1st personas age group and gender. Google Analytics uses different types of factors such as browsing history, time on page, and then associates this with a ready-made user profile (i.e. ‘shoppers’, ‘technophiles’, ‘foodies’, ‘music lovers’). Note down a few of the top affinities.

  1. In-Market: This helps us to know what kind of products your audience actively compares and researches. For this, within Secondary dimension, type “In-Market Segment”.

Note Down a few of the top products.

Location: If you navigate to Audience>Geo>Location. You can find out the countries your 1st person likely belongs to.

 Device Used: By clicking Audience>Mobile>Devices, you can see exactly which brand of mobile they’re using and even what service provider or operating system they prefer.

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Personas Segment Analytics Use of Personas

Personas with Segment Analytics (Part 1)

The following is a post from the APG Team’s summer 2020 intern, Jaad Mohammed.
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Web analytics is the collecting and analysis of data for optimizing an online process.

Segmentation. or segment analytics, is an approach of dividing customers into groups based on different characteristics. The resulting segments are composed of consumers who will respond similarly to marketing strategies and who share traits, such as similar interests, needs, or locations. During the remarketing, for instance, you can target specific customers with the help of these segments.

For example, your total website traffic can be segmented as:

  • customers who purchased your products,
  • customers who only visited your website,
  • customers who bounced from your homepage.
Using segment analytics, you can create meaningful and accurate personas representing each of these customer segments.
Using segment analytics, you can create meaningful and accurate personas representing each of these customer segments.

Using segment analytics, you can create meaningful and accurate personas representing each of these customer segments.

We discuss using personas with segment analytics here, and a later blog post, Personas with Segment Analytics (Part 2),  we will discuss how to create personas using Google Analytics segmenting feature.

First, let’s refresh our memory on personas.

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Marketing Personas Persona Analytics Personas

How can I use a persona for customer segmentation?

Personas are human like descriptions of customer segments. Just like customer segments, you can use the persona technique to divide your overall market into smaller subset that you can then examine individually.

In practice, the best way of using personas for customer segmentation is to apply a technique of data-driven persona creation, such as automatic persona generation. Using this approach, you can create an arbitrary number of personas from your source data; e.g., 5, 10, 50, or 100 personas.

If you are interested in learning more, just contact the persona team!

Jansen, B. J., Salminen, J., and Jung, S.G. (2020) Data-Driven Personas for Enhanced User Understanding: Combining Empathy with Rationality for Better Insights to AnalyticsData and Information Management. 4(1), 1-17.  https://content.sciendo.com/view/journals/dim/4/1/article-p1.xml

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Data-Driven Personas Persona Analytics Personas

How are personas and market segments different?

Personas and market segments are highly similar in the sense that they both are based on real data about the customers. However, the main difference is that personas individualize that data in a representation that has a name, face, and human attributes. In conclusion:

Personas = human like representations of customer groups
Market segments = nameless, faceless descriptions of customer groups

Jansen, B. J., Salminen, J., and Jung, S.G. (2020) Data-Driven Personas for Enhanced User Understanding: Combining Empathy with Rationality for Better Insights to AnalyticsData and Information Management. 4(1), 1-17.  https://content.sciendo.com/view/journals/dim/4/1/article-p1.xml

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Automatic Persona Generation Automatic Persona Generator Data-Driven Personas Personas

Customer segmentation using online platforms: isolating behavioral and demographic segments for persona creation via aggregated user data

In this research, we propose a novel approach for isolating customer segments using online customer data for products that are distributed via online social media platforms. We use non-negative matrix factorization to first identify behavioral customer segments and then to identify demographic customer segments.

We employ a methodology for linking the two segments to present integrated and holistic customer segments, also known as personas. Behavioral segments are generated from customer interactions with online content. Demographic segments are generated using the gender, age, and location of these customers.

In addition to evaluating our approach, we demonstrate its practicality via a system leveraging these customer segments to automatically generate personas, which are fictional but accurate representations of each integrated behavioral and demographic segment.

Results show that this approach can accurately identify both behavioral and demographical customer segments using actual online customer data from which we can generate personas representing real groups of people.

An, J., Kwak, H., Salminen, J., Jung, S.G., and Jansen, B. J. (2018) Customer segmentation using online platforms: isolating behavioral and demographic segments for persona creation via aggregated user data, Social Network Analysis and Mining. 8(1), 54.