Why Is The Zoho Buyer’s Journey Important To The Success Of Your Inbound Marketing Strategy?

A Zoho MarTech Agency

Has the phrase “buyer’s journey” been slipping into your sales and marketing-related conversations? Does it seem like your marketing funnel isn’t converting as much as it should?

The internet has a plethora of web pages. Virtually all known queries have a webpage with an explanatory answer. What that means is that the average buyer of today is more informed than the buyer of 10 years ago, since they have more and freer access to information. In a world where your buyers are in the know even before they make buying decisions, you must realize those hazy sales tactics will most likely not work in your favor.

Now more than ever, the best sales and marketing strategies are those whose foundations are based on helping your prospective clients, gaining their trust in the process, and then selling them your offer. This brings us to the essentiality of knowing the buyer’s journey and how to use it in your favor. Why? Because without knowing your buyer’s journey, it becomes difficult to postulate what their needs are and how you can help them till they make the buying decision.

FBurg CRM Zoho Buyers Journey

What is the Zoho buyer’s journey?

The buyer’s journey is a chain of actions and inaction that lead up to the eventual purchase during the customer acquisition process. Simply put, if a new customer were to order something from your online store today, then, they didn’t come to that conclusion in a matter of seconds. They must have gone through processes before eventually deciding to buy from you.

Buyers’ journeys may differ in their duration — some may last for minutes, while others may last for months. But the thing is: whether the buyer’s journey lasts for minutes or months, each customer goes through a process before purchase.
Thus, an understanding of the buyer’s journey will give you insights into your prospective customer’s pain points. Through this knowledge, you will be able to meet their content needs at every stage — awareness, consideration, and decision. An understanding of the buyer’s journey will equip you with the right knowledge to earn the trust of your prospects and compound that trust till they are convinced to buy from you, out of the scores of businesses that sell similar products.

In his book, How Customers Think: Essential Insights into the Mind of the Market, Professor Gerald Zaltman tells us that 95% of purchasing decisions are based on the subconscious. And to get something registered in one’s subconscious, it must have consistently happened over a while. Therefore, eventual purchases hardly ever happen without a prior consistent relationship with your prospective buyers.
Understanding the buyer’s journey and the intricacies involved puts you in a unique position to show your prospects the human side of your company. Once you can prove that you understand what they are going through, and are there to guide and help them, convincing them to make the purchase, when the time is right, will become very much easier and smoother.

Do you want consistent sales or the extremely rare cases where people buy from you on a whim? If you want the former, then, you need to start taking the buyer’s journey seriously.

The Stages in the Zoho Buyer’s Journey

Every buyer’s journey has three fundamental stages: the awareness, consideration, and decision stages. From the moment a web visitor comes into contact with your website till they make their first purchase, they will go through these three stages. Your level of handling these stages — of gaining and cementing their trust in your brand — will determine whether they will end up making the positive decision, or otherwise.

Let us look into these three stages and what they mean to you as an advertising business owner.

Awareness

This is the first stage in the buyer’s journey, and it commences the moment the buyer comes into contact with your brand. However, the awareness stage — and indirectly all other stages in the buyer’s journey — may end abruptly if the web visitors are not adequately stimulated at the awareness stage.

At this stage, what many prospects know is their problem or need. They’re out to get a better knowledge of the problem or need to be better prepared on the best way to solve it. Your business’ task at this stage is to help the buyer better understand what their problem or need is. This includes helping them get to know the possible ways of solving the problem. Strategies that can be deployed in the awareness stage include how-to articles, e-books, podcasts, playbooks, case studies, and other content marketing strategies.

Consideration

This is the second stage in the buyer’s journey. At this stage, your prospects have started to develop a degree of trust in your company. They would start to imagine ways in which your proposition can truly work to mitigate or even solve their needs. They would most likely consider other options and compare your product offering with other options.

It is therefore important for you to also be at this stage of their journey. What’s needed is to show them the uniqueness that stands your company out. Leverage the degree of trust they have in you; strengthen it. Foster a connection other brands do not have. Deliver your content in a way that makes them picture your product or service as a part of their life or business. The best strategies to use at this stage include lead nurturing and maturation via email marketing, retargeted ads, social proof, and client testimonials, results-based ads, but to mention a few.

Decision

This is the final stage in the buyer’s journey. At this stage, the buyer is well aware of their problem. More so, they know what they need to do to solve the problem, and have weighed all the options available to them. However, that doesn’t mean they are fully convinced of the option to go for.

You and your team need to continue to put in the work. This is when you make the sales call. At this point, you need to show that this one prospect means a lot to your company. Show them they are valued, through special offers (that’s if your budget won’t be affected). Strategies to use include time-bound special offers, demo or trial offers, among others.

In essence, the goal of understanding the buyer’s journey is for you to know the psychological state of your prospects at each given milestone before the buying decision. And by that, it is expected that you’ll be equipped to say what’s right to ease them into the next stage, till they eventually make the first purchase. Voila! You have acquired yet another customer.

How To Create A Zoho Customer Journey Map

For you as a business, the buyer’s journey is not embedded in your subconscious. It is not subjected to factors. Unlike your prospects, you need to plan for and anticipate the buyer’s journey and the likely outcomes at each stage. This is why you need to learn how to create a customer journey map.

A customer journey map is your concrete representation of each stage of the buyer’s journey and your exhaustive postulations of what is likely to happen at each stage. You can design a customer journey map using PowerPoint or Word.

To create an effective customer journey map, you must first have an understanding of the buyer’s journey and all the elements of the stages. For every buyer’s journey, these things are represented: the customer’s thoughts and/or feelings; the customer’s findings or research; the customer’s action.

Once you understand how important these three things are, then, you will know just how to move your prospects from one stage of the journey to the other. It will be costly for your company to continue spending on a stagnant prospect. There have been instances where customer journey maps have helped brands realize leads that no longer need chasing.

So, what should your customer journey map contain? Here is a sample below.

 

Awareness Consideration Decision
What are the prospect’s thoughts and feelings?
What is the prospect looking for online? Where are they getting their answers from?
What actions is the prospect taking? What actions are they failing to take?
What do we need to do to ease the prospect to the next stage?

A customer journey map

For every stage, you need to fill in as many details as possible. It is important to conceptualize. Put yourself in the prospect’s shoes. Think of the tons of tools available to gain information. Social listening could help you know where your prospects are getting answers to their questions from.

It is essential to ensure your actions are in line with the stage of the buyer’s journey the prospect is in. Cliche as it may sound, the inbound marketing world is one where there’s a time for everything. If you skip processes and give a proposition at the wrong time, you would most likely scare your prospects away. And that’s when they would stop opening your emails or mark your address as spam.

You need to always remind yourself that whether your company exists or not, the buyer’s journey will still stand. The prospects you’re after will still go through these stages before they make their buying decision. Therefore, you’re the one slotting yourself into the buyer’s journey, and you must do so in a way that doesn’t put the buyer in an uncomfortable position.

It is expected of you and your marketing team members to ask yourselves questions and plan actions that suit each stage of the buyer’s journey. This can be done through an understanding of what each stage entails. For example, the awareness stage is often the foundational educational stage. Thus, it would help if your team focused on creating informational content.

In the end, the buyer’s journey is a powerful tool for understanding your prospects better. This is yet another potent tool for truly practicing inbound marketing. You and your team need to understand that the buyer’s journey is first and majorly about the prospect. You are only required to factor in how your brand can guide the prospect along the journey, thereby gaining a primal position in their heart and registering your product as their best option.

Inbound Marketing Powered by Zoho MarTech

If you have experience with Zoho’s marketing software stack ( MarTech ) and understand this inbound marketing strategy foundations, you have a very powerful marketing starter pack ready to be configured and unleashed!

FBurg CRM can always help with your Zoho Marketing initiatives, just reach out to us!!