Intro to Personas

Intro to Personas

With Personas, you create lively descriptions of the most important customer types. This guide explains how to create them in TheyDo.

Personas help you to create reliable and realistic representations of your key customer segments.

In this guide we will introduce personas and help you understand the core features.

Why it’s important to create personas

Personas are a key part of designing better products or services because they do the following:

Create understanding and empathy for your customers. Personas are great empathy builders in your organization. They give a deep understanding of why customers do the things they do and what they expect from your organization. It is often easier to relate to a persona than to a list of requirements.

Create a shared language for your teams. By centralizing your personas in one place, you help everyone in the organization agree on who your customers are. This creates a shared language for your teams to refer to your different customer types.

Distinguish experiences for different customers in your journeys. You can add specific mood curves and insights for every persona that you add to a journey. This helps you to distinguish how different personas experience your journeys.

Help you focus on needs. While you can add demographics to your personas, TheyDo focuses first and foremost on personas based on people’s needs, jobs, and motivations. In comparison to demographics, needs often do a much better job of explaining what people expect from your services or products. Plus, they’re also more inspiring when it comes to design. Just look at the example below:

Consider two people; both are born in 1948, raised in the UK, and are wealthy and famous. Now, what if we told you that one is the Prince of Wales and the other is Ozzy Osbourne? Demographically they are identical. But their needs are vastly different, and so are their expectations of the products and services they use. Focusing on needs helps you to differentiate your offering to these needs.

Personas in the journey management workflow

Personas are often created in the first ‘problem discovery’ stage of the Journey management workflow. This is the phase where you sharpen your understanding of your customers and their experience, before you move on to improve it.

Creating personas

To create a persona in TheyDo, go to the persona overview, and click on ‘new persona’. You will be able to save a persona once you give it a name.

Defining personas

Every persona has its own canvas where you can create and define them in more detail. The more depth you add, the better your teams will be able to empathize with your personas. Here is an overview of the most important elements you can add:

Basic properties
These elements help you to define a persona.

  • Title – Give your persona a simple a name
  • Header image – Add a visual to your persona
  • Description – Add a description of your persona
  • Categorization – Add a category to your persona. These categories are used to ‘group’ personas in TheyDo.
  • Creator – TheyDo will timestamp the creation of a persona
  • Color – Change the color of your persona.
  • Comments – Use these at the bottom to @-mention or comment

Extra properties
Use these elements to add extra depth to your personas.

  • Personality traits – Add traits you can score. Note that TheyDo does not currently support custom traits (yet).
  • Interests – Add interest tags
  • Brands Add brands that the persona likes
  • Needs – Add the most important needs
  • Jobs – Add the most important customer jobs
  • External Links – Add links to other places, for example to insights or dashboards
  • External Files – Add documents to the persona, for example persona overviews or dashboard screenshots

Organizing personas

All personas end up in the persona repository. Go here to get an overview of personas, to create new ones, or to sort existing personas by their category.

Creating a market segmentation

You can also show how personas differ from each other by placing them on a 2×2 grid. In this grid, every axis defines the most important distinction between your personas. You can create as many grids as you want. For every grid you can add specific information:

  • Title – Give your segmentation a title
  • Description – Provide more detail about the segmentation
  • Custom axes – Use freely configurable axes on which to place the personas

Using personas in journeys

Adding a persona to a journey

To add a persona, go to the journey settings and the persona tab. There you can add a persona to journeys. Every persona you add gets its own insight fields and mood curve. Read more about adding lanes to journeys in our customer journey guide.

Removing personas from journeys

To remove a persona, click on the persona icon, and select ‘remove from journey’.


How do I create good personas?

We are currently compiling the best tips to create great personas. Here are some first thoughts:

  • Base your personas on real customer data, not on assumptions. Your personas are only as good as the research behind them.
  • Focus your personas on needs, as mentioned before.
  • Try to aim for a maximum of six personas that can be applied throughout your customer lifecycle. When you start working with TheyDo, you’ll often find that there are many personas floating around in your organization. Merging personas ensures that the number stays manageable. This helps to create a single source of truth about who your customers are that multiple teams and departments can agree on.
  • Try to define your extreme personas. Extreme personas help you to better understand regular customers. They are also much more inspiring to design for. To create extreme personas, you can ‘amplify’ the needs of regular customers into a selection of more extreme users. This way you ensure that together, your extreme personas cover all the needs of your regular customers.

How can I add metrics and live data to my persona?

This is not (yet) possible, but we are well underway when it comes to bringing your favorite data tools for CX and transactional metrics to TheyDo. Currently, there are two ways to do this:

  • Add an external link to the persona that links to your dashboard URL.
  • Make a screenshot of your dashboard overview and add it as an attached file to the persona. Update it every once in a while to keep this up-to-date.

How can I add more data than TheyDo’s input fields provide for?

To add even more insights, add extra attachments with PDFs or images of your personas, or link to more elaborate personas in your database.

Continue exploring

If you're just starting out using TheyDo, start here to experience the journey management workflow for yourself.

Setup and start using Jira Epics, Stories and task in your journey management.

Get a personal demo or try for free