As a marketer, you must know that customers are the fundamental source to the success of your business. Everything you do for the benefit of your organization should be focused on your customer. Digital marketing contributes to a large extent of the company’s overall marketing strategy. Therefore, one key factor for digital marketers is to predict customer behavior and influence their buying decision. Why?
The digital age has revolutionized and transformed the way customers make their purchase. Customers use smartphones and similar technology to research about a product, read the reviews before actually trying out a new product. Organizations, on the other hand, still lack the technique of looking at things from the customer’s point of view. To enjoy continued success, it’s important for the organization to start looking at things from their customer (buyer) perspective.
The goal of a digital marketer starts by deeply understanding the customer behaviour upon interaction with their brand and identify multiple touchpoints over a period of time. It starts from when they look at your product to the time of buying it without opting for a competitor product. The customer journey map helps marketers paint an outline of the customer’s experience from the first point of interaction to a long-term relationship. However, statistics show that about 68 percent of B2B organizations’ marketers have not identified the different stages in their user journey.
To ensure continued success, this should not be a one-time activity! Marketers need to revisit the customer journey mapping at least once a year to see which touchpoints still hold good and what changes need to be done.
You might have the most creative and compelling marketing copy in hand, but when targeted at the wrong audience, things can go horribly wrong. Marketers need to rightly align their marketing strategy based on the user journey and roll out campaigns to keep their users interested in the products. About 61 percent of B2B businesses report that aligning their content marketing strategies with the buyer’s journey is one of the biggest challenges. Let’s see the different ways marketers can take to align their marketing strategies with the user journey.
The foremost step is to segment your market and find out which product makes the best fit for the problem you are actually trying to solve. Similarly, also make a note of which product or service will be the worst fit for your business. As the marketer, the most important thing is to understand the customer’s pain point, what are their needs and what actually frustrates them the most?
Once you are done with the market segmentation, you are now aware of who is your customer and what are their needs. The next step is to create awareness about your product or service in the minds of your customers. Start off with targeted search and display ads that show up when customers start searching for their problems. Make sure you set your ad targeting options correctly so that only a specific set of the audience can see your ad and take necessary action.
If you are using Pay-Per-Click (PPC) strategy, your ad needs to have specific keywords and targeted at customers who are definitely looking to buy your product. The whole idea of creating awareness, running ads and marketing campaigns is to collect the user’s contact information.
Post getting the contact details, optionally, you can direct customers to a post-click landing page with any special offer details or additional information about your product/services. This should not be a promotion but more of sending out additional information along with any special offer/voucher code valid for a period of time.
The customer knows your product and the solutions it offers for their problem. They are just one step away from purchasing your product. Buyers want to know what makes your solution different from other products, and why they should opt for your solution. In this phase, you need to make sure you create a competitive edge over other products.
To give your buyers the confidence, run ads that promote the product features, the product homepage, and the pricing page. Send out tailored emails to your potential customers with additional information such as demo videos, explainer videos, customer case studies. Video and case study materials are the most powerful weapons that will have a larger impact on buyers. Pick the best of your client stories who have achieved significant results using your product. This helps customers to differentiate your product from the competitors. Remember to make use of an effective Call-To-Action (CTA) that will get the user interested to click on the links or the mailer content.
If your product/service has a free trial option, give away a free trial for 15 days or 30 days to give the customer a chance to look at your product and understand its capabilities. Share links to any webinars, podcasts and live demo sessions that will showcase the highlights and product benefits to the buyers.
Some customers don’t like wasting time and want things right then and there. Known as “micro-moments”, in these intense situations, customers immediately turn to a smart device to gather additional information about the product, benefits and how it solves their problems. Customer expectations grow higher during these micro-moments and they shape the decision making of your customers. As a brand, it’s important to address these moments during the customer journey to ensure you win the edge over your competitors.
At this stage, the buyer is ready to sign-up for your product and convert as a lead. Once converted to a customer, all that is left is to retain the customer. Engage with your customers to understand if they have any problems with the product. This is the best way to keep your customers engaged with your product for a long period.
Send customized newsletters to converted customers about your knowledge base articles, support portal, blog articles to keep them interested in the product. If you deal with multiple products/solutions, this is the best time to start cross-selling your services with the customer depending on their business and requirements.
Customer support plays a key role in this phase. Any queries should be resolved immediately to ensure higher satisfaction levels. As a part of effective customer support, communicate special offers and deals on the products to give them a more satisfactory experience with your product/service.
During release cycles, make sure your customers are aware of the exciting and new features in the product and the changes that are a part of the release cycle. If your product has different pricing tiers, this gives the perfect opportunity to upsell your product to your customer and push them to upgrade to the next tier to enjoy additional benefits.
Define metrics to make sure each phase of aligning your marketing with the user journey yields the desired results. Every step should yield an increase in the conversion numbers. For example, if a particular strategy does not work as expected, immediately switch to an alternate strategy to see if that works. It’s important to take a step back after each step and look into the metrics to see where you stand. It’s better to rectify during the early stages rather than regretting at the end.
Customers make or break the success of your business. Mapping your customer journey with the digital marketing strategy gives marketers the opportunity to visualize themselves as the customer and understand their journey through the company’s marketing strategy. By doing this, digital marketers can create a meaningful customer experience during every stage of the conversion process. The end result – a better understanding of your customers, increased engagement rates, and a greater number of conversions.
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