Since its inception in 2006, inbound marketing and content marketing, has helped marketers create and deliver content that appeals to precisely the right people, in the right places, at the right time, and in the right context. Making marketing relevant and helpful to the modern buyer and gaining the ability to measure results.
However, it is important to note that most SMBs are spending their resources on content that only appeals to people in the absolute tail-end of the buyer’s journey.
Content for Various Stages
Most websites have one or two places where a visitor can raise their hand and say, “I want to be a lead.” These websites typically have a “Contact Us” page and maybe one other call-to-action like “Book a Demo,” “Schedule a Tour,” or “Request a Quote.” These pages are important. However, they are only important at the absolute tail-end of a sales process--only the final 10%-20% of the process remains.
What about people in the first 70% of their buyer’s journey researching broad-based problems? People who could be an awesome fit for your company’s products or services, but they are not ready to talk to a salesperson yet.
The analogy I often use is: I’m in the market for a new car. What if I went out to the showroom this weekend--for the first time since previously leasing my car--and the salesperson walked up to me and said: “So Mrs. Feinberg, which car will you be buying or leasing today?” You want to make sure you are not using the same approach on your website. You must understand their context and where they are in the buyer’s journey. Otherwise, you are just going to offend them, and they are going to leave.
Preferred Content Formats in Buyer’s Journey
Hubspot cites the preferred content formats for those ready to buy in their buyer’s journey are as follows (descending order):
- Product information, features, and functions
- Product ratings or reviews
- Peer experiences
- Customer case studies
- Best Practices
- Expert opinions, media coverage, or reports
- How-to guides or checklists
- Survey results or research
- Diagnostic or assessment tools
The problem is, this is just content that is important to people at the end of their sales cycles--the seventh, eighth, and ninth inning. What are you going to do for the first six innings to make sure you compete effectively?
You want to make sure your sales team is well-prepared by creating content that addresses buyers at various stages of their buyer’s journey; take an important, active trusted advisor role during the first 70% of the buyer’s journey.
What content does your business have available for clients in their early buying stages? Does your website offer content for each stage of the buyer’s journey? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments below.
To learn more about content creation and how to reach buyers at each stage of their sales cycles, download our eBook, "3 Revenue Growth Opportunities Your Business May Be Missing."