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What is a Persona?

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Personas are fictional characters that businesses use to plan marketing, design and user experience. They are typically designed to be generalizations of actual customers that can be used to model customer goals, needs, behavior and emotions.
In many cases, development of personas is based on market research such as interviews with customers. Persona development is often carefully separated from planning and design to fight the temptation to bend personas towards the preferences of the marketing or design team.
Personas may include character traits, values, needs, aspirations, behaviors, skills and limitations. In theory, they help teams to consider designs and plans from the point of view of an intended audience. Done wrong, personas can become a smug pretense of designing for customers. This generally occurs when personas don't match customer or user realities. For example, if they are produced by a design team that has never met a customer who imagine customers based on unrealistic stereotypes.
Overview: Persona
Type
Definition
A fictional character that is used to consider the personality, needs, aspirations, abilities and limitations of an intended audience.
Commonly Used For
Branding
Niche Marketing
Market Segments
Customer Service Planning
User Experience Design
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