You and your buyers will benefit from creating a buyer journey map since going through the process will help you gain a better knowledge of your buyer. You’ll be able to match the sort of content to the buyer’s stage in the buyer’s journey as a result of that greater understanding, guiding your audience toward acquiring your solution.
What Is A Buyer’s Journey Map?
The buyer’s journey is the process that buyers go through when they are considering a purchase. The buyer’s journey consists of three stages: awareness, consideration, and decision.
Awareness stage: In the awareness stage, buyers become aware of their problem or need. They begin to search for information about potential solutions.
Consideration stage: In the consideration stage, buyers narrow their options and compare different solutions. They evaluate the pros and cons of each option to decide which one is best for them.
Decision stage: In the decision stage, buyers select a product or service and make a purchase.
The buyer’s journey map is a tool that helps businesses understand how buyers move through the stages of the buyer’s journey.
The map includes three key components:
1. The stages of the buyer’s journey
2. The buyer persona
3. The touchpoints
The stages of the buyer’s journey are the same for all businesses: awareness, consideration, and decision. However, the specific steps within each stage will vary depending on the product or service being sold.
The buyer persona is a fictional character that represents a business’s ideal customer. The persona includes information such as demographics, behaviors, needs, and motivations.
The touchpoints are the points of contact between the buyer and the business. Touchpoints can include ads, website visits, social media interactions, and phone calls.
Businesses use buyer’s journey maps to create marketing campaigns that are tailored to the needs of each stage of the buyer’s journey. By understanding the buyer’s journey, businesses can create more effective marketing strategies and improve the overall customer experience.
Do you have any questions about what your buyer’s journey map should be? Contact me today and let’s chat about it.
Know Who Your Buyer Is
You can’t chart a buyer’s journey without first determining who the buyer is. You may have multiple categories of prospective consumers, such as an ideal customer type (persona), repeat customers, and a part of your email list that downloaded a certain checklist (targets). Create a guideline for each sort of potential consumer you want to lay out their path.
Recognize the Problems that Your Ideal Customer Faces
Identify possible pain spots at each stage of the buyer’s journey. You’re likely to uncover more pain points as you move through the mapping process that you didn’t notice while writing them down right now, so feel free to add to the list of pain areas in connection to your solution as you go.
Be Aware of Your Marketing Channels
The content’s format is determined by the channel via which it will be delivered. If the information is going to be on your website, it may be a PDF download to assist you develop your list, a blog post, or a section of your FAQ or about me page. If your marketing channel is social media, primarily Facebook, this will assist you determine the sort and structure of material you need to produce.
Determine Your Marketing Objectives
It’s critical that you understand the goals of the content you’re writing, regardless of the consumer persona or marketing channel. The objectives should be stated in words that can be measured. “To teach 100 individuals about the risks of processed food,” for example. “To add 50 persons to my (particular) email list in the next seven days,” for example. The more precise your objectives, the better.
Make an Effort to Comprehend Your Audience’s Objectives
While you may have objectives, the objectives of your audience are likely to be more essential in assisting you in creating the correct content at the right moment. The aim of someone in the awareness stage will be different from that of someone in the contemplation stage.
Let’s imagine your potential customer’s current objective is to learn about all of his or her possibilities. If you respond by presenting a list of suppliers that can solve the problem, you’ve taken control of the discussion and are leading them to your solution depending on how you present the information.
Determine Engagement Possibilities
These are referred to as “touchpoints” by some. Touchpoints are simply possibilities for involvement. On your buyer journey map, make a note of any opportunities to interact with a potential buyer. Interaction can take the form of a content upgrade download (moving them to your list), email marketing (have them complete a poll), and so on. Any time a customer interacts with your company, it should be mapped. Additionally, because every engagement opportunity is also a conversion opportunity, you should provide more methods to interact.
Recognize the Purchasing Stage
Each stage of the buying cycle offers distinct chances for interaction with potential or previous buyers. It will be easier to give the appropriate material if you know what stage they are in. The type and manner of material you offer to them depends on whether they’re in the awareness, contemplation, or decision stage.
As you move forward, you’ll be able to start tracking the average time it takes someone to move through each stage (and which content they’re most likely to consume at each stage) if you also set up metrics and tracking as part of your overall buyer journey map.
Select Your Content
It’s critical to understand what kind of content you need to give at each stage of the buyer’s journey in order to obtain the reaction you want. This necessitates understanding who you’re targeting, where they are in their buyer journey, and what their goal is, as well as yours. Every piece of content should have a purpose that you can describe in one or two brief quantified lines.
Identify Areas Where You Can Improve
To progress, you must first recognise where you are. When you create the map, you can note where you’re doing a great job already without even realizing it, and where you need improvement. One of the primary advantages of building a buyer journey map is this. That way you can focus on areas of improvement first, and not waste time on doing the same thing over again when it’s not needed.
For example, if you created your map and realized that you don’t have enough opportunities for engagement when it comes to customer service, you can improve customer service by creating a searchable FAQ along with a self-service help desk.
You can use a variety of methods to create your buyer journey map, from using a mind-mapping system to using MS Excel or Google Sheets. There are also many templates that you can locate online that will be of great help to creating your buyer journey map. They all vary in what information they require, so look at the different templates to help you.
Do’s and Don’ts When Making Your Buyer’s Journey Map
As you’re developing a greater perception of your typical customer, through more understanding of the buyer’s journey and the content you need to use for each goal that you and the customer has, you’re likely to run into some issues. Use this list of do’s and don’ts to help you keep on track.
Be Cognizant of Trends
Trends are very important to pay attention to when you’re mapping your buyer’s journey and matching it with the right content. Leave space in your plan to include breaking news, current events, and trends that become apparent after you’ve developed your plan. Even if your solution goes against conventional wisdom, trends can play an important part in getting the word out about your solution.
Map Each Buyer Persona Separately
Be very specific about each buyer persona and map them separately. Don’t lump your entire market in together. To develop and create a content marketing plan based on your buyer’s journey, you need to be willing to do the work it takes to map each persona you want to target separately.
For instance, your maps for a decision maker, influencer, and user should be very different. Even though there may be some crossover in terms of types of content you will deliver, it’s imperative to map them separately because they have different concerns from each other and therefore the focus of the content must be different.
Update Maps When Results Occur
Once you start pushing out your content based on your buyer’s journey and the map you’ve created, you’re going to start getting results via your analytics based on the key indicators you choose. For example, let’s say you decided to boost your email list-building efforts by creating content upgrades (such as a checklist or cheat sheet) designed to inform and educate a decision-making persona who is in the consideration stage.
Now that it’s been working long enough and the data is available, how are you doing on your goal? If what you thought would work isn’t working based on your goals, then an adjustment to the map should occur. For example, maybe no one is downloading the checklist despite plenty of traffic and readers. Perhaps you need to develop a better piece of content to attract this persona.
Create Supporting Content
Every part of your business needs content that is mapped to the buyer’s journey, from pre-sales to post sales. If you have multiple departments, they all need documentation and content to help drive home the message that you want them to understand. If you want to create upsells, cross-sales, and so forth, ensure that you have developed the content for all aspects of the journey based on where you want them to go.
Include Only Facts
When you are developing your buyer journey map, it’s imperative that you let go of your emotions and focus only on facts. Facts are derived from data. If you don’t have data of your own yet, you can always use someone else’s such as industry standards as your benchmark until you have created your own.
Customers are very savvy and will notice if you contradict yourself when you are presenting any information about their problem and the solutions that you offer. That’s why it’s important to be careful about the words you use within the content. If you purchase private label rights content to help fill the void, read it, update it, and correct it based on your understanding of your audience and your niche.
Always Provide Feedback
Regardless of whether your audience downloaded a checklist, answered a survey, or made a purchase, feedback is imperative. Create follow-up materials that help you give them more information and directions so that they will enjoy their purchase and not regret their actions. In addition, this is a great time to get feedback via follow-up surveys, questionnaires, or calls.
Don’t get overwhelmed when you’re mapping the content you need to your buyer journey map. While it may look like a lot of content to develop and publish, it’s not as much as it seems at first because you can repurpose content into other formats and types. A “how to” blog post can easily become a “how to” video and even a webinar. This means you only have to do the research once to create many forms of content that can be used in various stages of the buyer journey map.
Use Customer Complaints to Improve
As you move forward with your business, you’ll start getting both customer compliments and customer complaints. Don’t shy away from negative reviews or complaints. This is your chance to improve. Every complaint, question, or concern can become information for a new blog post, or the opportunity to improve training videos and make your products or services better.
Use Data to Make Decisions Not Emotions
It can be hard when you’re attached to something to let go of emotions. Even if you’re part of your own niche target audience, don’t assume you know everything about the target audience. Your own experiences are subjective by nature. Only data can ensure that you’re right about any choice. For example, just because you like the colors, fonts, and information on your website doesn’t mean your ideal audience will. You can only know through study and testing.
Don’t Be Ambiguous
On your buyer journey map, it’s important to use clear language. When you look at it, or if you hand it off to others to implement, you want them to be clear about your meaning. What do you want them to do now and create now? If you’re not sure, they won’t know either.
Finally, put your map to the test. Determine what you already have by accessing your existing content and assigning it to portions of your map. Find out where the holes are and where you lack content, and fill those areas in.
Then start collecting the data to find out if your choices are working. You will be able to identify mistakes based on whether you reach your goals or not and the feedback you gather from your audience and customers. Put that to use to keep improving your buyer journey map and your implementation efforts.