The buyer’s journey is a process which customers go through when purchasing a product or service. It is important to engage customers at each stage to help move them along the journey, from initial awareness to making a purchase.

Customers’ needs change as they move through the buyer’s journey. But how do you consistently attract new customers whilst also building credibility and trust to maintain a longer-term relationship?

The answer is in producing relevant content to meet their changing needs. 

In order to effectively use content throughout the buying process, you firstly need to understand the stages that customers go through when buying a product or service.

It is also important to consider your buyer personas in order to develop a deeper insight into who they are and their needs. This will help you create content that resonates with them and shows your value as an advisor.

 

 

 

 

 

(Image taken from Hubspot)

  1. Awareness
    At the beginning of their journey, customers probably don’t know that you can help them.  So, it is essential at this stage for you to create awareness of your product or service. Buyers can then begin to understand what you do and how you can help them. This information needs to be readily available, in the most consumable form, to provide insight and educate buyers.

  2. Consideration
    In this second stage, various options are considered to help resolve the buyers’ main problem. Through the likes of market research, you can gather in-depth information to determine exactly what these problems or pain points are. If you know what the issue is, you can tailor your message to provide a solution to help them conduct their deeper research and decide whether your product or service is a good fit for them. While the awareness stage is to highlight what you can offer, this stage is to showcase how your offering meets their specific needs.

  3. Decision
    In the final stage, the buyer has reached a decision. They are going to make a specific purchase or buy into a particular service based their evaluation of all the possible solutions they have come across during their research. So, at this stage, you want to ensure that the buyer choses you over your competitors. You need to focus on showcasing why your offering is best suited to meet their needs, as well as any added value.                                                                                                      

But how does this influence content?

The main question to consider here is what stage of the buying cycle the audience you want to connect with is. Individuals that are working through a purchase decision will be looking for different types of content, depending on where they are in the buying cycle.

Awareness

The purpose of the content at this stage is to be educational, helpful and interesting. Make sure resources are readily available on your website for buyers to better understand their problem and search for information that can help answer their query or need. Most people (around 70%) head to Google to seek out a solution, therefore search optimisation strategies need to be utilised so blogs, case studies and website articles can be found. Examples of content to utilise at this stage include:

  • Blogs
  • White papers
  • Research reports
  • Chat bots​
     

Consideration

Once buyers have narrowed down their choices from their initial search, they will conduct second stage research to delve deeper into each company’s specific offering to compare one against the other. Content therefore needs to be produced that focuses on issue resolution, such as:

  • Webinars
  • Case studies
  • Videos
  • FAQ documents

Although blogs provide key information, they lack personal engagement that is needed to engage future prospects.

Decision

Once the buyer has conducted their research, they are ready to select the product or service that they were after. Credibility is key in order to showcase added value to differentiate from others. Engaging call-to-actions may be also be a way to start the relationship. Relevant content could then include:

  • Client testimonials
  • Customer reviews
  • Call-to-action free trial offer

 

 

 

 

 

(Image taken from Hubspot)

But even after purchase, the journey is not over.

Even though you have secured a new customer, the journey is far from over.  Your focus now needs to shift towards maintaining a long-term relationship with the customer to ensure they come back to you as a go-to advisor. Producing consistently relevant content, such as ‘product hack’ videos or email offers, can help build this relationship and meet their changing needs.

So it is important to remember that content is produced in response to the needs of the buyer which varies throughout the journey and can be determined from evaluating your buyer personas. Educational content, such as blogs, should be considered throughout the whole stage of the buyer’s journey to position yourself as a thought leader in the industry and increase credibility of your offering… which in turn helps to generate more quality leads. 

And of course, if you need help creating your own content strategy, then please get in touch.