You know the Buyer’s Journey is important to your business — but is your marketing team getting it right?
Let’s look to Star Wars to find out.
If you’ve never seen Star Wars, stop here. Go watch it.
Now, let’s talk about Luke and the Hero’s Journey.
A narrative structure popularised by Joseph Campbell, the Hero’s Journey is a familiar story pattern wherein a Hero embarks on an adventure, travelling from the ordinary to the extraordinary. There is a decisive crisis; the Hero is victorious, learns a lesson, and returns home transformed.
Luke’s storyline is a classic example of this Hero’s Journey.
When the story begins, Luke is living a normal life in an everyday world. There’s a call to adventure — but our main character refuses. He then meets his guide, Obi-Wan Kenobi, who leads him on his journey. Luke saves the princess and retrieves the Death Star plans. He returns home triumphant, and there is momentary peace in the galaxy.
So why does this simplified version of an epic story matter to your business?
Because your target customer is on a Hero’s Journey, too.
This is where many businesses get it wrong. They think their business is the Hero, ready to save the princess.
But you are not the Hero of this story — your customer is.
And right now, they’re stuck. Your customer needs a guide to help them — their very own Obi-Wan Kenobi.
Your business is that guide. And your offering is the secret weapon to help your customer move through their Hero’s Journey victorious.
Let’s take a closer look at how this relates to your Buyer’s Journey.
Understanding the Buyer’s Journey
“Sixty-seven per cent (67%) of the buyer’s decision is complete before a buyer reaches out to sales.” - SiriusDecisions.
Buyers today have more options and information than ever. They need to know why your offer is the obvious choice for them. They need their Obi-Wan Kenobi to guide them — to give them the tool kit that will help them succeed on their journey.
Simply put, if your marketing stops at lead generation, you’re losing sales.
But if you provide value at every stage of the Buyer’s Journey, you become the trusted authority. Your customers want to buy from you, and they want to tell their friends to do so, too.
Your target customer’s pain points will change as they progress along their journey. By understanding these problems — and the factors that affect them — you’ll successfully guide them to your offering as the ideal solution.
The three stages of the Buyer’s Journey
Most marketers refer to three stages of the Buyer’s Journey:
As I noted above, understanding the Buyer’s perspective in each of these stages will help you create more effective marketing to guide customers to purchase. Let’s take a look:
At this stage in the Buying Journey, your target customer realizes that they have a problem or a desire. However, they likely don’t know about your business. What they do know is they have a need.
Example: “I want to lose weight.”
The Buyer begins to look for a solution and starts researching possible approaches.
At this stage, your business wants to build brand awareness through high-value marketing material that speaks to the Buyer’s unique pain points. Content marketing is a fantastic way to do just that.
This is not the time for a heavy sales pitch. Your target customer doesn’t yet care about the nuts and bolts of your offering.
Focus on getting in front of your target customer and building trust. Answer questions. Show that you understand their unique needs and can lead them on their journey to success.
The Buyer has more clearly defined their problem and is now researching all options to make an informed decision.
Example: “I want a home work-out program that fits my busy schedule.”
At this point in the Buying Journey, the customer is likely comparing different options. Know your competition and how they are positioning their offerings. Demonstrate your Unique Selling Proposition (USP) as you continue to use your marketing to build a relationship with the Buyer.
The Buyer is now moving into the final stages of their research decision. They’ve narrowed down their options to a few providers.
Example: “Is this the right home work-out program for me?”
This is your opportunity to overcome final objections. Case studies and testimonials are a very good thing.
If you’ve been the right guide to our Hero, this is the transformational moment. They realise your product is the tool they need to overcome their pain or move closer to pleasure.
They’re excited to purchase from you.
Bonus stage: Advocacy
The Buyer Journey doesn’t stop the moment after purchase. Now that you’ve solved their initial problem, how can you turn your Buyer into a loyal, raving fan? What upgrades can you offer that will continue to support the customer on their journey?
Marketing initiatives centred around customer reviews, loyalty programs and exceptional customer service are all potential ideas.
You invested valuable time and energy in building your relationship with your customer and cementing your role as their trusted guide. Don’t abandon our Hero after their first victory.
The bottom line
Your target customer is inundated with information and buying options. Be the guide that cuts through the noise.
When you understand your customer’s changing needs at each Buyer Journey stage, you can create high-value marketing material that speaks directly to their pain points. You’ll overcome their objections, leading them to their desired result more quickly and easily.
Our Hero wins…
...and so too does your business.
Understanding the Customer Journey is one thing — implementing a comprehensive digital content strategy that works is an entirely different beast.
Get in touch today to learn how we can help you get wildly effective results online so you can go back to doing what you love — actually running your business.
Because we’d love to be your Obi-Wan Kenobi. 😉