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November 24, 2009


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Daniel Kuperman

Good points, David. I wonder, however, how the use of personas for the website may influence the design and how the company's personality will dictate how the design will be created.

Basically, how much influence should the company's personality dictate design versus the personas?


Great post. it sums it all up.
Inspired by your book The new rules, I today had a meeting with the CEO and CMO to go through Buyer Personas. They swallowed that easily, but I got the bad question back? How to ensure to target all buyer personas on the frontpage. Different landing pages for each persona is one thing, but how to incorporate them ALL on the limited space of the front page, without it looking messy?

David Meerman Scott

Daniel - hopefully they will be in line -- the type of buyers you serve and your company personality should mesh.

Eskedai - always a challenge. You might create a "superset" of personas for the homepage and then drive people further. Another way is to have questions on the homepage that drive people in. No right or wrong way...

Kathy Litalien

I think the front page should easily outline the key problems each persona faces. That should help separate the diverse personas so they easily navigate to the customized content.

Akash Sharma

Hi David,
All the 5 steps outlined above are really workable and as most of the brand websites contain a good bit of design but don't have a balance as you have mentioned above.
I think we can learn something from apple here, which is among the top ten websites in popularity despite of the fact that the other 9 sites either share content or our networks.
They are focusing on almost every point that you have mentioned and if it works for them it can work for others as well.

Christopher Ryan

David, I think your post is right on target. The challenge I have faced is creating a strong website when there are several totally unique personas to be addressed - for example, IT managers and financial managers. Kathy's idea to outline the problems each persona faces on the homepage is helpful but when the message has to be tailored to multiple audiences, it does weaken the total impact.

Chris Ryan


It seems a far way direction. I think it was even during the existence of internet. Top websites are really associated with scientific and artistic attributes. That is what making them unto the top.

Kristi Maxwell

I'm embarking on a web redesign/restructure and am having trouble figuring out how to find my buyer personas. Any suggestions on how I start this research?

Kathy Litalien

Hi Kristi - I recommend starting with your own knowledge of the market/customers and formulating some hypothesis on the various buyer personas. Then, conduct some qualitative research to prove/disprove/refine the personas. Following that or concurrently, i recommend some quantitative research. Please let me know if you want more detail. Good luck!

David Meerman Scott

Kathy - good advice for Kristi. Basically you must get out of your comfort zone and meet your buyer personas one on one. David

Amelia Vargo

A great website is a combination of so many things. But, you're right the content often gets overlooked. I think this is a real shame but it does allow the very best to rise to the top.


I think that strategy and content are very much crucial when create a great Web site.They must related to your site.


Great article. A further point to note about choosing to work with a professional web development company. Do your research! Make sure to get a mapped out proposal ensuring that your website design reflects your products/services and not just that of the design team.


Digital masturbation does exist. But be careful not to mistaken that for good design. The really good web designers use the technique of stripping away... that is, take away what is not needed. A great example of this is Google's interface. Function follows form here with very little fat (when they aren't decorating their logo, that is).

Warrior Dash

Great job! full of interesting ideas and insights.

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