The buyer’s journey is the process that your prospective customer goes through before deciding to do business with you. They have different needs and questions at different parts of the process. Don’t try to create content that is one-size fits all. Instead, provide what they need when they need it.
You may have heard the term “marketing funnel” also used to describe the buyer’s journey where people step through a sales process in a specific order of actions. But in reality, people can enter your funnel at any step, and they don’t necessarily proceed in order. You can’t assume it is a linear process, but instead should tailor content for each step in the journey. A simplified way to describe these steps is to categorize them as awareness, consideration and then decision. At each stage, your audience has different concerns and needs. What are these stages and what type of content should you create for each stage?
The first stage is awareness. Your audience has recognized they have an issue that needs addressing, but aren’t sure what might be the correct solution or what the options are. You want to help a potential prospect learn more about the problem they are trying to solve and any nuances about their problem. Some ways to convey this information include:
- Video – video is a great way to give your audience a more visual representation of their needs.
- Infographic – this allows you to provide short, digestible information about their problem in an easy to read format.
- Blog – if their problem requires a little more in-depth research, a longer blog may be the solution to provide the information they need.
- Quizzes/Calculators – these are fun, quick ways for your audience to assess their needs.
The second phase is consideration. This gives you the opportunity to further clarify who your products or services are right for. This content shouldn’t press your audience to do business with you, but is an opportunity for you to showcase what you offer and if your business is right for them – or maybe not right for them. Some ways to do this include:
- Interactive Demos – Interactive demos give your audience a chance to see you in action and decide if what you offer fills their need.
- Case Studies – Case studies showcase your past successes and allow your audience to identify with the customers in those studies.
- Webinars – Webinars give you the opportunity to highlight important facts about your business and answer any questions your prospects may have.
- Whitepapers – Give your audience an authoritative report that adds to your credibility.
The decision page is when they are ready to buy. Provide content that addresses their most important concerns when purchasing so they are ready and able to purchase. Content at this stage includes:
- Product-Specific Sheets – Ideal for technically inclined individuals.
- Product Webinars – For your visually-inclined consumers.
- Product Comparison Guides – These help your audience hone in on what they need.
When your audience gets to this point, you’ll also want to make the purchase process as easy as possible!
Paid Ads and the Buyer’s Journey
Mapping your content to the buyer’s journey also applies to your paid campaigns. Don’t be too generic in your advertising approach. Remember when you try to appeal to everyone you end up appealing to no one.