How to Create Great Content for Each Stage of the Buyer’s Journey
When it comes to making a purchase, consumers typically move through a few different stages before they actually commit to buying something. These stages are commonly referred to as the Buyer’s Journey and consist of: Awareness, Consideration, and Decision.
As you can imagine, during each stage of the buyer’s journey, consumers are looking for different types of information. For instance, during the awareness stage, consumers are just realizing that they have an issue that needs attention. They don’t know much about the issue or how to solve it, so they begin doing some research.
Once the consumer has a better idea about the issue and how to solve it, they’ll begin looking at companies that can help solve the problem. At this point, they’ve now entered the consideration stage, where they’ll compare different services and vendors to help lead them to a decision.
After the consumer has narrowed down their selection, they’ll do some final research on the specific vendor. Even after they’ve made their decision, however, they’ll still need resources to help with implementation and to ensure a successful outcome.
With all that said, it’s pretty obvious to see that the type of information a consumer seeks during each stage will vary considerably. Good content marketers need to tailor their content for each stage of the buyer’s journey to ensure their customers are getting the right kind of information.
During the awareness stage buyer’s are just learning that they have an issue. They know nothing about your company or how you can help. These folks need foundational information so they typically turn to Google to research the problem and see what can be done to solve it.
During the awareness stage create educational content that refrains from promoting your services or brand. Focus on the problem. You’ll have plenty of time to tout the benefits of your offering, but for right now, focus on educating the customer about their problem.
As they move along their journey, they’ll begin seeking company and brand-specific information, but for now, just focus on educating them with good content like: ebooks, research reports, educational content and whitepapers.
During the consideration stage, consumers have a pretty good idea about the problem and begin researching and comparing companies that can help. This is where consumers start looking at the specifics of what each company can offer and how they differ from one another.
Now you can start creating content that highlights the features, advantages and benefits of your offering. You’ll need to create content that can justify the ROI of your service, so focus on the solutions your company can offer to help solve their problem. At this stage, provide your customers with: expert guides, webinars, videos and comparison whitepapers.
During the Decision stage, the consumer is ready to pull the trigger and put your offering to the test. We need to ensure that our customers have all the resources they need to implement our solution with a successful outcome, however.
To ensure a good brand experience as well as a lasting relationship, we need to continue to feed our customers with content that can help them succeed and overcome their problems. Continue to nurture your customers with: live demos, product literature, best practices guides and case studies.
Your customer’s needs will vary depending where they are at in the buying journey. In order to build trust and gain their confidence, you need to create content that addresses those specific needs without being overly promotional.
Remember content marketing is not transactional.. It’s about building relationships and trust. Every interaction you have with a consumer should be tailored to where they are at in the buying journey. That’s how you build deep and lasting relationships with your customers to attract lifetime value.