We’re almost there! Today, Kepios Founder and social media expert, Simon Kemp shares his two cents on “Buyer’s Journey”, and how to master it.
🎈 Defining the “Buyer’s Journey”
The “Buyer’s Journey” is a series of logical, emotional, and physical processes that a person goes through on their path to purchase. The journey starts at the moment the person first encounters a brand or a category, or when they first perceive a need, want or desire that might lead them to that brand or category.
A buyer’s journey can last anywhere from a fraction of a second through to a whole lifetime, but the journey doesn’t always result in the person purchasing the brand or category that launched their journey; they may end up buying a different brand, an alternative product or service from a different category, or even deciding not to buy anything at all.
The critical thing for marketers to remember, however, is that the journey doesn’t end with a sale; in fact, the best journeys never end, and in some cases, journeys will continue across successive generations of the same family, and cover a significant number of purchases.
🔎 Why it’s helpful
Understanding the buyer’s journey can help marketers develop more efficient and more effective marketing. By understanding critical moments along the journey – what some marketers like to call “moments of truth” – marketers can help to influence and guide individual buyers’ progress through the different stages of the path to purchase.
🔎 What it looks like
The specifics of the buyer’s journey are different for each category, and depend on things like the level of complexity of the product or service, the investments that buyers need to make in terms of time, money, effort, and emotion, and the perceived risks associated with making a specific choice. For many buyers, these potential risks may be hidden deciders that ultimately persuade them not to buy what might appear to be a highly compelling product.
Most buyers will move through a series of sequential attitudes and emotions relating to the product, service, offering, or category they’re contemplating. The general steps are outlined in the chart below, but you may need to adapt these for the specifics of your own brand or industry.
It’s also worth noting that people can move backwards and forwards on their journey, and sometimes they get stuck at one stage, never to move again.
🔎 Making the most of it
As with almost everything else in marketing, getting to know your audiences and customers as real people – rather than as demographics or ‘consumers’ – is the surest way to understand what the journey looks like for the people you care about most, and understand how you can guide those people through their journey so that you both get what you want.
By building this understanding from the outset, and then nurturing relationships over time, there’s a good chance that you can turn the journey into a never-ending adventure.
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