The marketing funnel is no longer the optimal concept. You funnel is really an antiquated idea, particularly when it comes to digital marketing. A report by McKinsey, a consulting firm, termed the funnel as an outdated concept which its features no longer match the customers’ needs. The best option for businesses is to revise and improve the “Consumer Decision Journey (CDJ).” The client is surrounded by adverts that belong to all brands that are on the market. Long before purchasing, the clients is prone to messaging from you and your competitors.
Before purchasing the product, the customer search for a product online and is prompted by several brands, especially those which have the recent impression. After the customer starts with this initial set, they embark upon a thorough evaluation through researching. This is the biggest reason the old model have been dumped; due to an increase in brands to be considered during the research.
Even if there may be favoritism for the brands they are familiar with, currently customers have access to detailed information than ever before, thus steering them toward a wider set of options. The evaluation is the actual event of purchase, which is followed by the post-purchase experience. When the response is positive, the client enters into a loyalty loop, in which he or she revisits your site and give referrals to friends and relatives. The key difference between traditional marketing funnel and this model is that the new journey is not linear. Instead, a customer can enter this journey at any phase along the track. Digital marketing strategy can account for this new marketing reality by building valuable and unique brand communications designed to target customers at each stage of their decision journey.
1. Initial Consideration and Trigger Turning of marketing table is the core reason there was need for the new model for mapping consumer behavior. Clients start to hunt for services and goods with several brands in mind, and as they narrow down, brands would provide customers with marketing messages hoping to push them to the next stage.
Nowadays, customers are more active than ever, and they don’t respond to interruptive messaging. Therefore, avoid marketing at the first stage. At the first stage, customers are not really considering to buy your product at all but they are just considering you as a marketer, and they have to take time to decide whether to buy from you. Therefore, avoid being promotional before engaging clients. If you do, you will turn them off from the brand before you even make it to the contemplation phase. Instead, offer value outside your products but within your field of expertise.
By offering inherent value, you entice potential customers to explore what your brand has to offer in a longer, more protracted contemplation phase. To remain at the top of the game, ensure that your content points toward driving social sign-ups or email subscriptions. Giving your visitors a chance to accept branded communication is a great progress, but it can be withdrawn if you abuse the privilege. Remember you have been invited to their crowded social feed or email inbox, so do not be annoying. Instead of using this as a sales tool, use it as informative content but blend it with sales message at a light touch.
2. Active Evaluation After passing the consideration stage, here is the next and most essential stage in the new CDJ (Consumer Decision Journey); the active evaluation phase. However, you can curtail the threat of losing a potential customer by anticipating the research and assessment questions they have and use the content to control the debate. Being fully equipped with answers that the customers may ask portrays you as a genuine and serious marketer thus winning their attention and ultimately their business.
Salesforce Company offers a great example of offering in-depth resources that reinforce their reputation as an industry leader and also highly skilled when it comes to a conversation in the evaluation phase. When you provide high-quality content that evaluates a certain product, you retain the ball in your court for long. This help reduces the possibility of a consumer considering your product to have an interest in other competing brands.
3. Post-Purchase If you have made it to this stage, congratulations. Having survived all the other stages, it means your digital marketing efforts have really worked. However, it’s not over. When you make the sale, it is not the end of your job, but a beginning of the relationship. Getting a client all the way to the point of buying your product is not easy, and it is more difficult to retain them and make them repeat customers. Apple does a noble job by offering in-store lessons and high-class customer service to assist you get the most out of your new device. They are not contented with just shipping the best product to customers, but they aim at making the customers use the devices to the optimal. This generosity has fostered loyalty toward their brand. After using their product, it is more likely that you will go back to purchase the same brand.
Prepare a top-quality informative and educational content that is so fantastic that it becomes a feature of your brand. It will assist to sell to new customers and make existing customers more loyal.
4. Loyalty Loop After creating this positive relationship and posing value with content, create events, special materials or even meet-up to encourage brand loyalism. By nurturing a connection between existing customers and your brand, you can be able to shorten the customer decision journey distance and place your business at the top of the game.
To achieve brand loyalty, you have to be consistent. Play active role towards enabling and maintaining your customers. Ensure there is plenty of high-quality content on your site all aimed at nurturing loyalty. By genuinely appreciating your customers and demonstrating willingness to go an extra mile, you will breed a small but committed group of loyalists. Doing this for a long period multiply your group to a movement.
All these strategies can fuel a positive feedback loop. This new method understands the CDJ, takes into account the cyclical nature of purchasing and can assist fuel real, sustainable growth.