The Beacon Way: Interacting through All Stages of a Buyer’s Journey
Why is Understanding the Buyer’s Journey Important?
The Beacon Way intentionally interacts with buyers during all stages of buyer’s journey. It’s important to meet them where they’re at every stage. It’s also important to establish your company as an expert in the field you represent.
By providing your potential customer with education and information online, you begin establishing trust. Buyers continue to coming back to your site for more and more information because you have established yourself as an industry leader in your field.
How The Beacon Way Approaches the Needs and Identification Phase
The Beacon Way helps people in every stage of their journey. Let’s begin by looking more at the Identification of the Need/Problem stage.
This stage, in many ways, comes with the most risk. The tone of voice you use here and how you have approached the identification stage for your potential customer is critical. Not every person who is searching has fully identified the problem that needs to be addressed. They may just be looking for something that they are drawn to and can say, “Hey, that sounds like me!”
Artfully mixing research and identification can be incredibly beneficial to the person at the beginning of the awareness stage. We’ve helped many of our clients tap into this very successful strategy because we always advise that they create content on their service or landing pages. Providing a lot of educational content on their websites can lead to a potential customer coming back again and again during their customer journey to our client’s site. As prospective customers continue seeking out potential solutions, the client begins establishing trust and authority in that space.
The Power of Identifying Your Target Audience in Business Development
The identification piece is critical to potential customers moving past this stage and into the next stage, the research phase. Mixing both a skillfully crafted identification and education piece into your online presence, creating trust, authority and expertise is vital to converting customers from potential into actual sales.
Using Consistent Body Language and Tone: Build Connections During the Buyer’s Journey
When putting out quality information (with consistent tone and body language through the words you choose) it really helps the reader to identify their need. There are times when people won’t realize there’s a product or service out there that’s the right solution for their needs. This is where marketing tone and words used should all align. This really connects with the target market you’ve identified for your business.
This is an important opportunity to think beyond your product and service. There may be multiple levels of competitors that have nothing to do with your product. Instead of focusing on them, really take the opportunity to focus on your target customers and your product. What makes you stand out?
Establishing Trust and Avoiding Bias in Marketing and Sales
Avoid Coercion and Manipulation
Navigating the line between confident expertise and bias can be tricky because focusing on being the expert in your product or service establishes authority for your business. However, crossing the line into discrimination will turn off potential customers. Keep bias out of the conversation. By using a neutral tone and providing solid educational content pieces, you’ll continue drawing your ideal customers and continue establishing trust.
Buyers don’t want to be sold or begin to feel as if you are trying to sway them toward your product or services. They want to make good decisions without a guilt trip or the feeling that you’re coercing and manipulating.
Additionally, the customer experience after they’ve made a purchase is much different experience. If they feel they’ve made the final decision to choose you vs. feeling manipulated into purchasing from you during the decision-making process— it can harm your partnership with them.
Leverage the Power of Honesty and Transparency to Build Credibility
At Beacon Media + Marketing, many clients have come to us in need of a wide variety of services and upgrades to optimally reach their growth goals. We believe in helping them optimize the services they receive in order to get the best possible results based on the budget they have.
Many clients who come to us desperately need a website upgrade. A start-up business, for example, needs to upgrade its website at a maximum cost of $7500. We know their budget constraint won’t allow for that. Instead, we work to help them reach tangible goals in their start-up phase. With honesty and transparency in our company values, we’re most likely going to tell the client, “Hey, a website upgrade may not be the best use of your funds for this first year. Here’s why….” We accompany that by saying, “Eventually, a web upgrade is advised for the following reasons…”
Recommending against a short term-investment, being honest with your client and identifying what’s best for them (within what you offer) strengthens your credibility. You can’t make everyone happy. It’s vital to be honest and transparent about who you are, what you offer, and what you feel is best for them in the short and long term. These are key factors to build trust and this is a strategy for gaining trust with your client.
Removing Barriers to Decision Making: Increase Sales Conversions
When a prospective customer moves into the final purchase decision, our best advice is, “Don’t make it complicated for them to give you money.” By removing barriers in the customer experience, you allow your customer to continue feeling comfortable and secure with you. You create space for them to continue seeing you as the best solution to their need. Because of this, they’ll be less likely to bounce off your site.
To hear more about removing barriers, see our Podcast/blog#5.
Make a Lasting Positive First Impression
Your first impression is everything to your customer. There’s never a second chance to make a first impression. Without removing barriers, it’s likely you’ll lose customers — unless they’re incredibly motivated to buy from you.
Start with UX
A positive buying experience starts with the UX of your website. It’s also tied to the body language piece of your particular brand. If your prospective customer approaches the sales portion of the transaction and they are thinking to themselves, “Woah! I feel like I’m dealing with a frowning, arms crossed, grumpy front desk sales clerk. What’s this about?” They very well may decide to abandon their cart and walk out.
We encourage, as part of The Beacon Way, to make sure that the buying process is very simple and smooth. Continuity of tone and body language continue the conversation with customers who perceive you as secure and trustworthy. This is opposite occurs when they feel like they must convince you to take their money. Especially when the sales process becomes overly complex and is not leading them on a user-friendly pathway to purchase.
Reducing Buyer’s Remorse by Building Trust
A complicated and unfriendly buying experience can lead customers into buyer’s remorse. Research shows that the buyer’s journey stage of remorse is a common and shared experience across many platforms and categories. A recent poll shows that 74% of adults have had buyer’s remorse after making a purchase online.
Great customer service and our proprietary approach of The Beacon Way helps increase the trust level your potential client has in your company. Prior to making their purchase, and more importantly, it reinforces the confidence your customer has in you and your product after the purchase.
Building Relationships Through the Power of Personalization
Add a Personal Touch to your Sales Funnel
The first 3 days of the post-purchase experience present you with an incredible opportunity to continue to foster a sense of comfort in the purchase that your customer has just made with you.
Using The Beacon Way method of tone and body language, we at Beacon have sent a direct personal letter from either Jennifer or Adrienne welcoming them to the company with specific information that we know about them personally, giving them our personal contact information to use if they have any issues. If we’ve never had contact with them, this says to them that they are known all the way to the owners. It shows that we not only care that they made the purchase but care for them now after the purchase and at the highest level.
Adding a personal touch to your sales funnel goes beyond just removing barriers, it’s addressing the emotional barrier that we know they have at this decision stage which is questioning if they made the right decision. It is letting them know that we are here for them, not just here for the sale.
The next step to this is: addressing a known pain point by also making their onboarding as easy and enjoyable as possible. We know that getting into the details of those technical steps is not all that enjoyable and we have the opportunity to bring some of the joy back into that stage of the buyer’s journey.
Emotional Touchpoints for Optimizing Client Relationships
We provide all these extra emotional touchpoints at that beginning week because we know that we must overcome the pain point of creating relevant content by asking for the plethora of information the team needs to receive from them to move forward.
Beacon Media + Marketing’s strategy for the early stages of the new customer journey is to set up the Meet and Greet almost immediately with our Account Management team, have all our questions lined out ahead of time, and get the client excited about talking about their business, which reinvigorates them. They talk about what they love and this becomes a positive experience for them, balancing out the negative of the technical requirements we ask of them. Recognition that the post-purchase opportunity after the decision-making process is done is such a valuable time to increase and build trust and deepen the relationship which can lead to another one of the journey stages which is a wonderful referral relationship.
Thank you for joining us for this conversation on The Beacon Way as part of the buying journey process. For more information please check out more of our episodes here.