Shoppers may sporadically indulge in an impromptu purchase. Who hasn’t absentmindedly picked up a chocolate bar near the cash register at the grocery store? However, for the majority of purchases, consumers navigate through the buyer’s expedition before reaching for their wallets.
The buyer’s expedition is a progression every purchaser undergoes on their way to a transaction. It encompasses three phases:
Nevertheless, myriad events can transpire during and between the stages of the buyer’s journey that may sway their determination to buy. They could also be diverted away from your sales pathway and towards your competitors’.
Producing content tailored for each leg of the buyer’s journey assists in keeping your patrons on track—towards your business’s product or service. If your content captures your potential customer’s interest at the appropriate buyer’s journey stages, you might sway their decision-making and pave the way to a purchase, all the while presenting your business as an authority within your field.
In this piece, we delve into more comprehensive insights about the buyer’s journey, customer expedition phases, and the varieties of content most suitable for each phase.
The Three Phases Of The Buyer’s Journey
If you’ve engaged in conventional marketing, you’ve probably encountered the sales funnel. The sales funnel, or marketing funnel, delineates a customer’s route to purchase from the seller’s standpoint. Sales funnel stages could number six or even more.
In contrast, the buyer’s journey charts out the route to purchase from the buyer’s perspective. Unlike sales funnel stages that revolve around company objectives, the buyer’s journey stages provide a glimpse into a buyer’s necessities and motivations.
There are three buyer’s journey stages: Awareness, Deliberation, and Resolution. Grasping the buyer’s journey stages, providing the right content for each, and utilizing the appropriate marketing channels aids in captivating and sustaining their interest, as well as nurturing their purchasing decisions.
“I Identify a Predicament” – The Awareness Phase
In the initial of the customer journey stages, the purchaser acknowledges a pain point.
A pain point is an issue encountered by a current or potential customer of a business, which we will henceforth refer to as the “purchaser.” A pain point is typically reoccurring, persistent, and a source of exasperation. You can think of a pain point as an unfulfilled need awaiting resolution.
Here is an illustration of a pain point for business-to-consumer (B2C) brands:
A night shift worker struggles with sleep during daylight hours.
Meanwhile, here is an example of a pain point for a business-to-business (B2B) client:
A restaurant consistently receives negative feedback on social media.
At this juncture, the purchaser investigates their problem to gain a clearer understanding and label it.
Let’s revisit the night shift worker and the restaurant owner. After enduring several sleepless days, they turn to the internet to learn more about their predicament. The night shift worker will likely input search queries like “How can I improve daytime sleep?” or “Why am I unable to sleep when it’s light outside?” By perusing articles on health websites, they discover that they may be suffering from shift worker insomnia.
Meanwhile, the restaurant owner might use search queries such as, “How can I mitigate negative Yelp reviews” and “what’s causing negative reviews on Google Business Profile?”
At this juncture of the buyer’s journey, the emphasis should be on enlightening purchasers and aiding them in labeling their pain points. The objective for brands and marketers is not to produce and circulate content that leads to conversions, as this will inevitably fall short with purchasers who are solely interested in learning, not purchasing. Instead, this phase of the customer journey funnel aids brands in earning purchasers’ trust and establishing their expertise as authorities.
“How Can I Remedy My Predicament? – The Deliberation Stage
The purchaser has already defined their pain point. Now, their subsequent step is to amass information about potential solutions. They compare products and services to ascertain the most suitable one for their requirements.
During the second of the customer journey stages, the night shift worker might research melatonin supplements to aid sleep, blackout curtains, or earplugs to block out daytime noise. Conversely, the restaurant owner might explore reputation management agencies to combat negative reviews.
The deliberation stage is the opportune moment for brands and marketers to furnish information about their solutions, allowing purchasers to determine their compatibility. At this juncture in the customer journey funnel, you should also take into account your direct competitors and underscore to purchasers why and how your products and services outshine the alternatives.
“This Constitutes the Optimal Solution to My Predicament” – The Resolution Stage
This is the ultimate stretch of the customer journey funnel. Purchasers at the resolution stage have already selected the most fitting type of product or service for their requirements. They’ve narrowed down their selection from the awareness stage. Their next step is to designate the provider and finalize a purchase decision.
At this point, the night shift worker might opt for melatonin supplements. Their search queries might include “Nature Made Melatonin vs. Natrol” or “pros and cons of Nature’s Bounty Melatonin.”
Meanwhile, the restaurant owner may have decided to engage a reputation management agency. Their search queries might look like “Rize Reviews reputation management pricing” or “reputation management agency reviews.”
Content Varieties For The Three Buyer Journey Stages
When determining content to align with audience intent, here’s what we need to comprehend:
Content during the awareness stage – more top-of-funnel – will be designed to help someone discover they even have a problem. It won’t be focused much yet on positioning the client as the answer to their problem. That comes later. And that awareness stage content might be a perfect fit on a social media platform if the target audience is millennials. Further down the funnel, you’ll want to position the brand as the guide who helps solve the customer’s problem.
Potential purchasers in this stage of their journey are seeking reliable, helpful information and resources to comprehend their pain points. They need to be able to frame their problem before they can embark on a search for a solution.
Your potential buyers are unlikely to consume content that’s overtly sales-oriented. Even if you commission the best content writing service to create conversion-focused content, your buyers might just end up being put off. For this reason, the best content types to incorporate into your content strategy for this stage essentially encourage consumers to contextualize their pain points.
- Blog Posts: These not only educate buyers but also bolster your SEO efforts. The ideal word count for your blogs will depend on various factors, including your audience and your topic. Generally, it’s best to aim for more than 300 words. A reputable content writing service provider will counsel you on the optimal topics and word count for this stage, tailored to the type of customers you aim to attract.
- Social Media Posts: Facts, intriguing snippets of information, and educational content on social media platforms foster awareness among consumers seeking swift answers.
- Webinars: According to Oberlo, 244.4 million people in the U.S. watch videos online. What’s more, according to Statista, while young people watch the most educational content, people of all age groups enjoy watching educational content online.
Thanks to your efforts in furnishing them with information about their pain points, your buyers are now prepared to investigate potential solutions. At this stage, you need to assist them further by offering even more information, this time about the products or services you provide and how these can meet your buyers’ needs or help them accomplish their objectives.
Remember that while your buyers aren’t quite prepared to make a purchase, they are more open to exploring potential solutions and perhaps giving them a try. For this reason, your content strategy for the deliberation stage should prioritize informativeness, above all else. This stage is also a prime opportunity to inform potential buyers further about your product or service in comparison to competitors.
- Instructional Videos: In a survey by Techsmith, 83% of respondents indicated a preference for watching videos to access informational or instructional content. To ensure you not only capture but also retain your audience’s attention, consider enlisting the expertise of a video marketing specialist to create a compelling, high-quality video that delivers value.
- eBooks: These are ideal for targeting and educating potential buyers on complex topics, as they tend to be lengthier than blogs. A trusted content marketing services provider will assist you in conceptualizing and crafting eBooks for this stage, as well as ensuring your buyers actually download them.
- Whitepapers and Case Studies: These work effectively for B2B clients as they meet their need for information while subtly positioning your brand as an industry authority. You may also mention your business as a provider of potential solutions, but refrain from making an overt sales pitch.
- Product/Service Comparison Guides: These assist potential customers in deciding which type of solution is best suited to them. In addition to comparison guides, you can also create blogs detailing the pros and cons of a particular solution you offer. This delivers high-value content to potential buyers while fostering trust and establishing yourself as an authority. If your audience favors videos, you might contemplate enlisting a video marketing specialist to assist in creating comparison videos.
Your buyers are now ready to embark on the final leg of the buyer journey or sales funnel stages. Given that they’ve reached this point, it signifies that your content strategy has largely been successful.
You’ve educated them about their pain point and its potential solutions, and now it’s time to reap the rewards, correct? Well, not quite yet – you still have to convert them. Your focus now should be on persuading your audience that your solution is the finest.
You can achieve this by leveraging content types and persuasive copy that surmount any remaining obstacles to their decision. Your in-house marketing team or chosen high-quality content writing service provider may craft the following content types that you can create for this ultimate stage:
- Case Studies: These are a superb way to nudge buyers who need further assurance that your product functions and is the superior solution for their pain point.
- Complimentary Trials and Demonstrations: This is a high-risk yet high-reward approach for augmenting conversions. A complimentary trial or demonstration allows your leads to gain a more profound understanding of your product or service. If they conclude that it meets their criteria, then all that remains is to seal the deal. However, they might also conclude that your offerings aren’t the right fit. In such a scenario, your sales team will likely need to put in extra effort to secure the conversion.
- Gratis Consultations and Estimates: Analogous to complimentary trials and demonstrations, no-cost consultations provide potential buyers with a sneak peek into your offerings. Meanwhile, a cost-free estimate enables your business to engage with your buyer directly, apprise your buyer if the solution aligns with their budget, and furnish an opportunity to secure a sale.
You can deploy numerous other content types and platforms at the resolution stage, such as emails, social media posts, and pay-per-click ads. The key is to concentrate on those that not only align with your audience’s current stage in their journey but also consider other pivotal factors.
Consider, for instance, our methodologies here at Leadshouse.
We acknowledge that content isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. And as a comprehensive digital marketing agency, we can harness expertise across nearly every channel to optimize a client’s return on investment. We delve into where a client’s audience resides based on their demographics and purchasing habits.
Content Marketing Services That Adapt to Your Customers’ Position
Online content is indispensable for triumph in the digital realm. Tailoring content to align with the buyer’s journey helps ensure you attain the most favorable results – and ROI – from your content marketing endeavors.
Leadshouse has aided countless clients in leveraging the buyer’s journey to realize their digital marketing objectives, from heightening brand recognition to augmenting website sales. Get in touch with us today and visit our website to explore more about our services.