The buyer journey

Updated: Aug 16, 2021

1 What is the buyer journey?

The marketing funnel is really just a way of evaluating a buyer's journey. We understand that a buyer will go through the stages from awareness to action but it's really not that straightforward. The buyer may be moving up and down the funnel exiting and reentering.

There's so many variables that we as marketers are working to account for. How did the buyer become aware? Did they walk into a store and see the product on the shelf? Did they hear about it from a friend? Did they click on a social media advertisement? If they saw an item on the shelf, for example were there competing products alongside yours? And if so, what does that do for their journey? Will they now be comparing your product to the one next to it? And if so what are they comparing it on, on cost, on benefit? Think about all the steps involved in the decision making process. Within each stage, buyers define their own path and interact with various brand touchpoints. As you develop a digital marketing strategy you must be taking a catalog of how your buyer will navigate your funnel. And this can feel like a rather robust undertaking.

You must iterate on your buyer's journey. You cannot conceivably map out every journey, every touchpoint, and every interaction. What you want to do is to find the most common paths a buyer will take. Ask yourself how will my buyer become aware of their problem? How then will they become aware of a solution? How would they become interested in a brand? Why would they desire a particular brand? And what would motivate them to convert? What will motivate them to move down the funnel? Understanding your customer's journey helps to deliver the right message at the right time. Once you know the decision making stage the customer is in, well it's easier to craft the right message that helps that customer move forward and it'll help you select the right channel to deliver your messaging. Understanding your customer's journey is the key to creating your marketing strategy.

2. How to create the buyer journey?

One of the greatest challenges in marketing is knowing which marketing messages would be compelling to your audience, and also knowing when and where they should be delivered. Now, there's no one set form for this, but you can create a very simple template to get you started. Along the top as columns, the funnel stages includes awareness, interest, desire, action, and loyalty.

Then creating e a few rows and give them labels. Start with activities. What is the customer doing in this phase? Then goals. This is what the customer wants to achieve during this phase. Next, thoughts. What are some questions or thoughts the customer might have? From here, emotional state. Is the customer happy, excited, sad, frustrated? Are they curious or interested? And how are they feeling during the portion of this journey? Next we'll look at touch points and channels. What will the customer interact with and where? Is it your website, social media, an email, and so on. And then objectives. What do you need to do to move this customer to the next stage of the funnel? Now, you might have multiple responses for each funnel stage, but this format will help you map out your fundamental buyer journey. Let's fill out one of these columns together.

Source: LinkedIn Solution

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