The content that you create for your audience will play a large part in your business’s success in the digital age. While content is now vital for SEO purposes, many marketers and business owners neglect to consider how much the right high-quality content can drive the customer journey through the sales funnel. From brand awareness to making a sale, the customer journey can often be a nonlinear one and can vary from being a journey of a few minutes to one that takes weeks or even months. Understanding a little more about the sales journey and how content be used to eradicate roadblocks to a sale is now essential for any business owner.
The Stages of a Buying Cycle
To understand the ways that content marketing can be the main driver of the customer’s buying journey, it’s important to know what each stage of that cycle is. The delivery of your content at each of these stages will be a critical factor that will have a very direct effect on your potential to generate a profit. The buying cycle stages are:
- Awareness: A consumer learns about you.
- Consideration: Your content at this stage should be targeted to solving the pain points of your consumer.
- Intent: Consumers have a lot of options, and this stage is where you may lose them to your competitors. You will need your content to persuade them that you are the best brand with the product to solve their problems.
- Purchase: For many business owners, they might think this is the end of the buying cycle. It shouldn’t be, because there is more to do.
- Continued Purchases: The goal of any business is to attract higher numbers of repeat customers. Your after-service and the content that backs it up is therefore crucial for a more effective content marketing strategy that drives the buying cycle.
How content marketing can build trust first
Trust is vital when customers need to hand a business their financial details or their data. Your content can be one of your most valuable trust-building tools. By using content that is tailor-made to specific stages of the buying cycle, you can develop a consistency that consumers will look at as an indication of your trustworthiness. It’s important to remember that the content itself should not be about selling. It needs to be of value, providing answers and solutions that matter to your audience. You can also use your content to connect and network with established figures in your industry, which only adds to your levels of trust.
How companies can use content marketing to get in front of potential customers
There are many ways that content marketing can be used to guide consumers to where you want them to be. The most effective steps of your content marketing strategy need to be:
- Customer research
- Competitor research
- Targeted adverts that align with your organic content strategy
- A smart social media strategy that includes a high level of engagement
- Linking up with sector-relevant influencers
- Learning how to get maximum impact from email marketing campaigns
It can be a lot of work to create the most effective content marketing strategy for a more streamlined customer journey. In a world where brands have to be always-on and ready to be there whenever and wherever their customers need them, content marketing is vital. Align your content with your buying cycle and your impact will be much more significant.