Customer persona research provides a common framework for synthesizing and understanding rich customer data that can then be shared across the organization.
Sales, marketing, product development and customer service can understand and appreciate the concept of serving a particular customer archetype. Distilling data into personas can help inform and focus the organization in delivering on customer needs.
One issue to consider is the role of customer segmentation vs persona development. Persona development typically begins with collecting information about your users to identify behavioral patterns followed by qualitative research in painting a mental picture of a single user. Segmentation development usually involves quantitative survey methods and statistical modeling to profile and size larger groups.
Of course, you can combine both approaches for deeper customer insight — there’s no need to pick and choose.