Your brand needs to publish fantastic content that can attract customers, convert sales and inspire loyalty. With this in mind, you should create a comprehensive plan that supplies your customers with the information and support they need during their journey with your brand.
As part of your strategy, you must produce relevant engaging content at the right time, when your customers need it. A deliberate marketing effort that supplies the right value at the right time can result in high levels of customer satisfaction and retention.
In this cheat sheet for matching content to the different stages of the customer journey, you will learn about the journey and discover ways to support the unique needs customers have at every point.
First, You’ll Need a Customer Journey Map
Sketch a diagram to get a visual picture of the way customers interact with your brand. The information you obtain while creating customers’ journey map can help you customize your content strategy to support them. At every step, pay attention to how customers feel about their needs. When you spend time understanding how people think at each stage, you can create a customer experience that supports profitability.
To get started, create buyer personas that generally represent your ideal customers. Put yourself in their shoes and then pay attention to their thoughts and feelings as they begin to recognize their needs and desires. While assuming your buyers’ persona, write down the questions that you would ask, and use them to guide your content strategy.
All things considered, you can expect your customers to have a journey that includes the following five stages. Although the particular characteristics of each phase depend on your business and target customers, you can accomplish much by delivering appropriate content at the right time.
Stage One: Awareness
Before anyone can become a customer, they must know that your brand exists. For this reason, you must create content that promotes awareness. In the online world, this means that your content should attract traffic from relevant Internet users.
Content published for this stage of the customer journey should introduce your brand and explain why customers need your products and services. Spend some time understanding what questions your potential customers might ask when they begin searching for solutions to their problems. Use the answers to create valuable content that will attract buyers from the onset of their customer journey.
Part of this effort requires you to find keywords and search queries that people will use during this stage and optimize your content so that prospective customers can find your brand when they perform Internet searches.
When people become aware of their problems and desires, they will naturally begin looking for solutions. Present your brand as the logical choice by publishing content that is interesting and entertaining as well as informative.
Stage Two: Consideration
Customers who know about your brand need to also have the information to make an educated buying decision. Now is the time to prove the capabilities of your products and services and establish the authority and trustworthiness of your brand. You must create and publish content in accessible and engaging formats that make the transfer of information effortless.
At this stage of the customer journey, buyers become open to learning about your story. For this reason, you should seize this opportunity to show why your brand and products are different from your competitors. As you capitalize on your story, give them a chance to sign up for your newsletters and promotions. When you do, you get information that you can use to build mutually beneficial relationships that can influence their decisions.
As they consider their needs and contemplate their upcoming purchase, your potential customers will eagerly absorb all the information they can find. After all, they want to make sure they get the best possible value and the most effective solution in exchange for their money.
Stage Three: Decision
Sooner or later, customers will need to make their decision. They will rely on their experience to this point to choose a product or service. Right now is the time to publish content that gives your prospects an incentive to choose you.
At this stage, social proof can push your customers across the finish line, so make sure you give them access to product reviews and testimonials that can inspire confidence. Your goal is to allow your customers to see and expect an outcome similar to those of other satisfied customers.
During this crucial period, you must make sure that your company is accessible. For example, make sure that your team promptly answers phone calls, emails, and social media inquiries. Other options such as live chat, FAQs, and searchable knowledge bases can ensure that customers have no reason to reconsider their choice.
Stage Four: Purchase
Rather than regarding a purchase at the end of the customer journey, consider it as another step in a long-lasting process. For this reason, you should go the extra mile to ensure that your customers have an exceptional experience.
When customers have a pleasant experience doing business with you, they can become brand advocates who will encourage their friends, relatives, and associates to do the same. One way to enjoy such a benefit from the purchase stage is to provide supportive information throughout the checkout process.
At the stage, you can use different software tools to collect vital information about your customers and exploit it to develop more personalized campaigns. Aside from boosting the efficiency of your marketing efforts, you will also support your customers’ purchase decisions and make them feel valued. Additionally, consider creating a new customer kit that gives buyers exclusive insider access to your company along with video content, articles, and manuals that will help them.
Stage Five: Loyalty
After you make a sale, you need to do everything possible to encourage repeat business. After all, servicing existing customers costs less than acquiring new customers. Furthermore, customer loyalty helps you expand your customer base and achieve long-term growth.
Some marketers tend to neglect the post-sale stages of the customer journey, accepting a closed sale as a success indicator. Instead of doing that, look for ways to encourage repeat business. The loyalty phase of the customer journey might be the most important one.
Capitalize on this stage by publishing content that keeps customers informed about additions to your product line. When you make this part of a loyalty program, you give them an incentive to buy from you again.
When you understand the customer journey, you can optimize your content in ways that provide support at every stage. As a result, you can create an exceptional customer experience by ensuring that customers can get relevant information when they need it. In the end, you can accelerate the sales cycle and build a loyal and profitable customer base.
Ashley Wilson is a freelance writer interested in business, marketing, and tech topics. She has been known to reference Harry Potter quotes in casual conversation and enjoys baking homemade treats for her husband and their two felines, Lady and Gaga. You can reach Ashley on Twitter @ashleygwilson.