How to guide customers through buying cycle with strategic content
Product manufacturers in Canada face a tough challenge. Keeping the customer involved in the brand experience is getting harder due to a high number of competitors and even higher advertising budgets.
The shelf is a cluttered space, so how does one stand out? The key is customer relationship management.
From the moment a customer has the opportunity to interact with your brand, the relationship begins. It is vital to establish communication with potential customers at every stage of their decision making process. This is why more and more businesses, 86 per cent of B2B and 77 per cent of B2C, are relying on strategic content creation to improve their brand awareness and reach target audiences.
One of the most important factors of creating compelling content is to make sure it is tailored specifically for each stage of the buying cycle, providing the opportunity for the brand to effectively communicate with the potential customer, every step of the way. It is critical to keep in mind the steps one goes through before purchasing a product/service, much like a decision to buy a new pair of shoes in a face-to-face retail environment.
In order to reciprocate effectively, you will need to tailor your copy following a consultative approach, a personal selling model.
The formula to create content then boils down to simple math-like equations:
Rapport + Needs Analysis = Need Recognition + Information Research
Here is where you find out what your customer is looking for and what your customer finds important. Relating to your customer’s point of view and then applying that knowledge to you copy is what will set you apart. These steps in the buying cycle will then not have to be as promotional, letting the customer come to you.
Solutions + Propose & Close = Information Research + Competitor Analysis
Having a problem and seeking a solution is a common approach in the buying cycle. Making sure that your copy then provides a solution, positioned as the right one, will then encourage your customer to buy in and embrace that as their solution.
Service = Purchase Decision
Achieving the sale is not the final stop in this buying cycle train, not when it comes to content. Building your brand by maintaining that relationship and keeping existing customers engaged will create more value in the long run, brand customers turn into brand advocates.
The bottom line is that a successful well-managed customer relationship is the cornerstone to good business. How your brand shares information throughout the purchasing process is a good indicator of how likely you are to adopt potential new customers.
Jeff Quipp is an expert on digital marketing. He is the founder and CEO of Search Engine People Inc. (SEP), Canada’s largest digital marketing firm, which has been on the PROFIT 100 ranking of Canada’s Fastest Growing Companies for the past five consecutive years and named one of PROFIT Magazine’s 50 Fastest Growing Companies in the Greater Toronto Area. You can follow Jeff on Twitter and connect with him on Google+.