Understanding the stages of the client journey prepares you to deliver exactly what your ideal buyer wants at the precise moment he or she wants it. It positions you as the brand that pays attention, and it makes each customer touchpoint more effective.
A marketing strategy that doesn’t take into account each stage of the journey can’t be called a strategy at all. It ignores the diverse needs and drivers of customers as they make purchasing decisions and wastes valuable marketing spend.
What are the stages of the client journey?
While the jargon may vary, the client journey can be boiled down to four commonly accepted stages.
Awareness: The consumer is aware of your brand.
Consideration: The consumer is considering your brand.
Conversion: The consumer decides to give your brand a go.
Advocacy: The newly converted customer shares her experience with others.
How do marketing strategies differ based on the stages of the client journey?
A comprehensive media strategy is designed to take advantage of the unique opportunities and meet the demands of the unique purchasing obstacles at each stage of the journey. The first hurdle is raising consumer awareness, bringing new prospects into the sales funnel. This is also the first opportunity: identifying new prospects.
Raising brand awareness
The early stage of the client journey makes use of the broadest advertising tactics, such as far-reaching digital banners or transit ads on buses. These more generalized advertisements also offer new data, providing an opportunity to fine-tune steps further along the journey. Once you’ve caught a consumer’s attention, you want them to consider your brand a contender in their decision-making process.
You’ve piqued your prospect’s curiosity. Now, your marketing tactics should become more tailored towards specific sub-groups within your target market. Awareness Stage banner ads should point to blog posts, videos, and other useful content that makes the case for your brand versus the competition. Keeping Consideration Stage content short-form and highly engaging provides enough information to move consumers to the next touchpoint without overwhelming, or worse, boring them.
Converting, converting, converting
In some cases, the conversion stage of the client journey can be as simple as a call to action (CTA). However, some brands with more complex offerings may tip the scales in their favor during conversion by providing still-hesitant consumers with additional content offerings. White papers, case studies, and other undeniable enticements provide that last push across the brand barrier into the brand champion stage.
Encouraging brand advocacy
For a satisfied customer, the journey may end at conversion. For an ecstatic customer, the journey offers one more level: Brand Advocacy. Brand advocates are the holy grail of customers. They take your marketing to the streets, to dinners with friends and family, and to shared workspaces and social events. To encourage customers to make their conversion a religious experience, a life-altering encounter that they want to share with the world, you’ve got to deliver the goods, which means continuously nurturing happy converts. Bring them into the fold with newsletters and emails and loyalty programs.
Continuing ad infinitum
The touchpoints along your client journey should be assessed and reassessed as new data is delivered. Continually refining your marketing strategy ensures an adaptable marketing strategy that becomes more relevant every year your brand is in business. Maintaining that kind of momentum can be a challenge for a bustling brand.
If keeping up with the client journey is wearing you down, email the team at Morgan & Co. for a consultation and learn how we can help.