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The Patient Journey Series: Creating Your Patient Persona

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The patient persona is, although fictional, a close representation of who your patients are.  Kinda like a dating profile. It will include traits, habits, values & interests that match with your core and ideal patients. It will also include demographic information, concerns & influencers. Each persona represents a cohort of patients with similar characteristics, demographics and lifestyles. The patient persona is an important tool in understanding both who your core patient really is and who your ideal patient is.

What is it?

Have you ever seen one of those mosaic pictures? Where a bunch of other pics are put together to make one It’s like that. We are creating a patient persona that represents a cohort of your patients.

Why do we need it?

What’s happening alot, in all kinds of industries – with both large and small is less spending on marketing than their competitors, yet they have better engagement and more impact. Shifting from the “Consumer Era” to the “Relationship Era”.  

Patients today are very diverse. You may see a 90-year-old rock climber one day and a sedentary 60-year-old the next day.  In order to foster a strong bond between you and your patients, you can no longer simply group patients by their ages, but must treat each one individually. You need to be unique in your focus with every patient and make it a mission to find out what makes that person tick. This allows you to not only fine tune your marketing to be more effective, it gives you remarkable insights that can be used to train staff, make improvements to the esthetic of your clinic (if necessary), provide targeted content that keeps the patient focused. ( The patient persona is THE key tool in this understanding.

Not only is this a key tool for you as the clinic owner or marketing manager, this is key for ALL staff.  If helps define actions that align with the patient’s expectations

This is a personal relationship business; it is not something that can be mass produced. Understanding who your patients ARE guides your actions & investments and improves results

How do we create it?

There are 5 major components to the patient persona. Consider surveying patients to gather more insights. Or schedule extra time with a few patients to collect insights you didn’t have. You’ll start by creating a first draft. Then update & fine-tune it as you continue to learn more. The key here is just get started! We will go through each section of the Patient Persona giving you time to make notes and start to create one.

It’s important to note– you will want to create multiple persona that make up your patient base. You can go through this process with your team in your clinic

After we workshop this- we will share a few examples. You may realize that you need to tweak a few things in your clinic to more align your processes with your patient personas

Patient Persona: Goals & Values

Let’s start with Goals & Values. Goals would include the aspirations of your patients

like wanting to remain young and active, or maybe it is just to be connected to their family.In some cases this could be professional, making sure they communicate well at work, or it could be hobbies, travel or family

Patient Persona Example: Mike the Firefighter

Start with the Name

Or put together the persona and like having a baby- the name comes after birth. Then jot down the goals & values of a patient that best represents a group of your core patients. When back in your clinic- survey your patients and see how close you were on this.

Sources of Information

This section is critical to determining where your patient gathers information, news, etc Do they look to FB, Fox news, CNN, WSJ, other friends, twitter, local news, newspaper, magazines, etc. This helps you better understand the patient’s mindset & attitudes. Gathering this info frames the filter through which your patient sees the world. It helps you better understand how they will process & perceive the info shared with them. You can’t control the sources of info outside of your clinic. You CAN absolutely and should control the info in your clinic. (

Demographic Info

This brings your patient persona to life as this is literally the “look” of the patient

You’ve got the typical suspects in this section in terms of infoT. he “Quote” field is one that will particularly help you get into the head of your patient. This field is a quote, a saying or verse that inspires this patient persona – one they might refer to often occupation, Title & income help frame the patients financial situation . evel of education provides insights on how they process info. I’m sure you’ll have at least 1 persona with Masters in Engineering as an occupation- right? Vocabulary & Keywords is a super helpful insight.  This is how your patient speaks. Words that provide comfort . Words matter – but we also seem to be ok changing the meaning of words. Understanding this helps build rapport and better communicate with your patient.

Challenges & Pain Points Section

Understanding your patient’s fears, concerns & greatest challenges is awesome insight.This section identifies both the physical & psychological roadblocks your patient may be experiencing

Objections & Role in Purchase Process

Here we ask what environmental (cost, features, style, etc) and psychological (fear, stigma, embarrassment, etc) may be keeping your patient persona from making a decision. We are also digging into understand what other influencers play a role in your patient’s decision. Helps create leverage with those influencers (spouse, child, grandchild) to improve your patient persona’s outcomes.


There is no question you have multiple Patient Personas that make up your core patient base. You will want to go through this process for each of those personas.

This ensures you thoroughly understand what makes your patient tick. What drives their behaviors. And what approach you can take both in your marketing content and your in-clinic experience. Once you’ve built your Patient Personas you can build your clinic persona, then build out your patient journey map

Alex Davis