It’s basically redundant to say this but… A lot has changed in 2020.
The change we’ll be discussing here has actually been happening for many years now. This is the way that transactions between customer/client and business happen.
By the end of this blog, you will know exactly what your customer journey looks like and how you can use that information to grow your book of business.
Basics of the Customer Journey
The diagram below shows the “Traditional Buying Decision Model”
Pretty straightforward, right?
Things are a little different now, this next diagram shows how things have changed – see if you can spot the difference…
The models are largely the same, except for one key player. Here’s what happened.
In 2011, Google introduced this concept that they referred to as the “Zero Moment of Truth” and it changed the way that businesses viewed how to interact with their customers. Google provides consumers access to all kinds of information and this has greatly improved customers’ purchasing power.
This step in the process addresses the question of whether your audience even knows that your business exists, and can help them with the given problem(s) that they are facing.
Awareness basically comes down to this,
Does your customer know that you are a solution to their problem?
The absolute best way to increase awareness is through advertising. This can be done through either physical or digital mediums, but the important thing is to make sure that you choose the right medium for your audience. If you don’t, well…
You are throwing away valuable ad spend.
Where are most businesses putting their ad spend in 2020?
The obvious answer is in Digital Advertising.
Here are a few ideas for how you can start building awareness:
- Social/search marketing
- Text/email marketing
- Loyalty programs
- Word of mouth
If you were relying primarily on more physical mediums, it might be time to start looking at how you can re-allocate those funds towards digital.
You should have a few ideas cooking now on how to build more awareness. Once you deploy those, the next thing to look at is just how easy is it for your customers to find you online?
Are you one of those business owners that think social media and online listings are a waste of time?
Well, think again…
These may not convert into real dollars in the short-run, but it’s important to keep in mind that your customer may be actively searching for the solution that your business provides.
How many times do you think that this type of search is being made on Google everyday,
“Best __(problem solver)___ in __(location)___.”
“How do I __(solve this problem)____?”
If you never bother to fill out your business’ online listings and create social handles, your website will rarely stand out in the sea of other, more optimized businesses.
In business, how your customers perceive your brand can quite literally make or break your business. In fact, a staggering 97% of people actually check online for reviews before making a buying decision.
It’s about more than just getting some reviews dated over a year ago and calling it a day, here are a few things that consumers (and Google) take into account when viewing your testimonials:
- Average Rating
Entrepreneur wrote a great article on getting more Google Reviews for your business – make sure to check that out (after reading this!).
There isn’t much to explain here except this,
Your business just made some money!
This is the point of your customer’s journey where they will be making the buying decision in your favor. 2020 has certainly changed the way this is usually done.
Here are some ways that you might convert your “prospect” to “customer/client”:
- Phone call
- In-store purchase
If you think that your customer’s journey ends here, think again…
This is the last step in your customer’s journey, but if you take it with them correctly you will create a constant loop from Awareness all the way back to Advocacy.
How does this happen?
It starts with the type of advertisement that you can’t buy, and happens to be the most powerful type of awareness building. We referenced this in the “Awareness” section when we listed “word of mouth” as a potential awareness builder. People follow what other people do – if somebody is raving about your brand, another person dealing with the same problem will likely follow their lead.
This applies to B2B and B2C because hey, we’re all people at the end of the day.
Here’s the thing, according to Hubspot referrals close at the 50-70% range!
The best thing you can do after the transaction is to ask for a review, referral, or both. This is the last step in your customer’s journey but if you take it correctly.
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Until next time,