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How content marketing improves the buyer journey. 7 ways

Posted on June 02, 2014 by Rob Petersen

 

 

 

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  • 80% of people appreciate learning about a company through custom content (source: Demand Metric)
  • 67% of the buyer’s journey is now done digitally (source: Sirius Decisions)
  • 60% of people are inspired to seek out a product after reading content about it (source: Demand Metrics)

The facts show content has a major influence on buying behavior. And, when done effectively, content marketing  improves the journey.

How? Here are 7 ways content marketing improves the buyer journey.

DISCOVERY: Potential buyers are  likely to learn about your business from relevant content.

  • KEYWORDS ARE THE CURRENCY OF THE INTERNET: 54% of people find websites through natural search results according to Forrester. This means, when people type in their unmet need in the query box of a search engine, relevant content is likely to begin the brand relationship. A good tool to use to find the right keywords with the most search volume for your business is the Google Keyword Planner.
  • BUYER NEEDS CHANGE; CONTENT MARKETING QUICKLY ADAPTS: Buyers’ needs change but content marketing can maintain relevance. To illustrate, here’s how consumer needs in pajamas have changed using Google Trends. But content marketing could easily be adapted to changing needs, tastes and seasonality.

CONSIDERATION: There are different Buyer Personas and stages to the Buying Cycle. Content Marketing builds 1-to-1 reach relationships with all of them to facilitate their journey.

  • BUYERS GO THROUGH FIXED STAGES IN BRAND CONSIDERATION: There are three stages to our buying behavior on the internet based on three personalities: Researchers, Shoppers and Buyers. Researchers expect the business to educate them. Shoppers expect comparisons to other products. When ready to buy, Buyers want an experience that is clear, easy and fast. Content marketing is one of the most practical and thorough ways of appealing to all of them.
  • CONTENT TAKES A LOT OF FORMS: They include:
    • Articles
    • Blog posts
    • Advertorials
    • White papers
    • Email campaigns
    • Newsletters
    • Web content
    • Infographics
    • Illustrations
    • Photos
    • Videos
    • Tutorials
    • FAQs
    • Webinars
    • Case Studies
    • E-books
  • LINKS CREATE AUTHORITY, INFLUENCE AND ADVOCACY: One of the most effective ways to be recognized as an expert in your area. It might seem like a paradox but if you extol competitors you admire, you elevate your brand to that competitive set. One of the easiest and most effective ways to do this is to link with other authorities. Content marketing  is an effective ways of incorporating links. They raise authority and search rank.

SELECTION: Content marketing is one of the most measurable means to find the audience you want to attract, find more just them, get them to take the actions you what and prove effectiveness. So, you can repeat this process over and over again.

  • ANALYTICS GIVE AN ACTIONABLE SCORECARD: Every piece of content can be measured to see who visited, spent time, opened, shared, commented and their behavior flow. Whether through Google Analytics on a websites, short links like Bit.ly on social media or a download, everything can be measured. It shows what worked, what to keep doing and what to improve.
  • RELEVANT CONTENT CREATES COMPETITIVE DIFFERENTIATION: After the product, relevant content is a brand’s most relevant asset. All things being equal, a brand that produces relevant content, vs. a similar brand that doesn’t,  has significant competitive differentiation.

 
For more facts on content marketing and buying behavior, check out the infographic below.

Did this convince you content marketing improves the buyer journey? Are you ready to do something about it?

beginners-guide-to-content-marketing-infographic

2 comments
rhonda hurwitz
rhonda hurwitz

Enjoyed the post, Rob.  One challenge:  "if you extol competitors you admire, you elevate your brand to that competitive set " << I agree, but did you ever succeed in getting a client to do this?  I've tried, but it is not a strategy any of my clients will embrace!

robpetersen
robpetersen

@rhonda hurwitz Thanks Rhonda. IYes. I have had success when talking about new products or a company that is a small fish in a big pond. But, if a client is uncomfortable, I would move on to other categories for links: (e.g. news, trade pubs, etc.) Overall, I find a link-building strategy to be one of the bigger content marketing challenges. Links has incredible value for SEO and relationship building; yet, getting clients to agree on the categories for links as well as introducing like authentically in content is both art and science. So there more than one way to go and it's just important that link building is part of the plan.I hope I answered your question. 


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