If your product or service is a fairly considered purchase then don’t expect to put one piece of marketing (such as an advert, email, brochure or exhibition stand) in front of your customers and immediately close the sale. This is the dating equivalent of proposing marriage on a first date – oh dear no.
Many people mistakenly think that the purpose of marketing is to speed people up in their buying decision. But it isn’t.
The role of marketing is to help people make their purchase comfortably in their own time. If they haven’t been rushed into it, they’ll be much happier with their buying decision and will be more likely to stay loyal. And we all know that loyal customers are the most profitable kind.
If your customers are going to need to think carefully before they buy from you then you need to let them. Your marketing needs to facilitate that slow, careful consideration to help them buy comfortably in their own time.
To do this, you need to think through the whole buying process from your customer’s point of view.
Before you start any marketing activity, think carefully about how this piece of marketing fits into the rest of your marketing. How will your reader go from seeing this advert or email - or any other marketing message for that matter - to actually buying from you?
If this will be the first thing they see from you, don’t immediately ask your customer if they want to buy – they’ve only just heard of you so the answer will probably be “no” or hopefully “not yet”. Your customer is only ready to hear about a “second date”. So what is a reasonable second date offer that will let them get to know you better?
In most cases, the best second date is a short piece of content (under 3 minutes to read or watch) that will help your customer learn more and start to trust you. Like this blog post for example! Make sure your content has a call to action at the end that is, again, a logical next step.
Perhaps suggest they download a longer piece of content (which is relevant to the first, shorter piece) in exchange for their name and email address. This kind of gated content is often called a “lead magnet” or “gateway offer” and the exchange of data helps you to start a conversation with them.
Ideally, you’d then direct prospects to a low-cost or low-risk product which allows them to “dip their toe in the water” and find out what it is like to buy from you, before you then finally offer your core product.
The key thing in this whole process is, for every piece of marketing that you do, consider the following things carefully:
If you would like to find out more about how to map out your customers’ path to purchase, come along to my next workshop on Thursday 9th February 2017. In this half-day session, we will map your business onto the Watertight Marketing methodology (in which I am licensed and accredited).
This blog draws on key concepts, frameworks and illustrations that form part of the Watertight Marketing™ methodology. These remain the intellectual property of Watertight Marketing Ltd and are used with permission and under license.
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