Relative, relevant, and humble. Brand journeys, much like first impressions are how users begin to understand your brand, how they approach your content, and why they decide to leave or stay. From individuals to businesses, we must prepare an offering with a cadence that meets their needs as they begin to discover the what, how, and why of our model.
With many existing solutions in every area, we must understand how to develop a broad approach for both B2C and B2B customers. We begin to see funnels, individualized content, and account-based solutions all around.
The value in developing these unique pieces, aligns with the larger strategic puzzle, approaching users with the understanding that each can have different needs.
Through the journey, we become aware of these interactive components that become increasingly more individualized. The touchpoints that line this path are rich with value, uniquely tailored, and become even more focused on solving the user need.
Allowing ourselves to research and map interactions with business goals in mind, we can meet the user's intention, and measure their response to our value asks. There is a balance in these actions, creating value throughout to provide a strong ask, and feeling of validation in their choice. Though the sales cycle may vary for these entities, developing initial rapport can outweigh the value of missed connection when coming to a comparative analysis.
“55% of Consumers Would Pay More for a Better Service Experience.” — (Salesforce)
While inversely “89% of consumers have stopped doing business with a company after experiencing poor customer service.” — (Salesforce). Considering these weights, you can see that offering poor service, is a larger detriment than we realize. This is where communicating with our users about expectations, provides a huge advantage as they move through our interactions.
The importance of user research and empathy mapping is understanding these expectations, the needs, and how users intuit the products and services they are interacting with. In digital, we can often offer solutions through new mediums that can help sustain or rectify these interactions with intended haste.
In the development of these areas, along with testing, it is important to share these experiences through our platforms to inform our users about any changes or shifts of experience. Building on the rapport established earlier in the process, we can continue to develop trust and display empathy for their needs as well.
Differentiating the process for each user group allows for mindful consideration of their needs in a pattern that is apparent as they move closer to a conversion.
Winning in digital has a lot to do with experiences as we begin to understand how to develop them for our audience. Applying the touchpoints we normally produce, we are now looking at different drives and motives. We often see the endpoint in which our user is presented with an ask that is then mirrored down to the pieces that lead them to the first digital connection.
As we look at this funnel we see that there is a broad offering of initial touchpoints, as we move through, their roles change and often they are more impactful pieces of content, landing pages, and value investments. To visualize this, let us take a look at this infographic from The Inbound Growth Hacking Bible via Four Dots.
Like many of these inbound digital strategies the solutions are based on the user's needs, being mindful of what we create, and scaling to what we can manage with healthy measurement is imperative. Let's take a look at some ideas for creatively solving in digital and beyond.
Social /SEM / SEO
We can look at these three as the signals we look to develop and grow that aggregate and contribute to our larger acquisition strategy. With social we can use our voice to communicate, our brand to evoke emotion, and our content to convert. Pairing our content marketing with digital strategies we can efficiently target users through ad platforms and measure our relevance in that market.
With Search Engine Marketing we can utilize the successful data from our top of funnel ad spends to define and refine our targeting and tags. Through search, we can align our user's intentions with how they approach finding those solutions to create digital beacons in prominent spaces.
Search Engine Optimization is a consistent contributor to our relevance in both of the aforementioned areas. Aligning our content and pages with the algorithms that decipher their quality and relevance, we can understand how to leverage specific components of the top two to influence the optimization.
Leveraging and enabling video throughout these three signal generating mediums we can develop brand awareness, reach, and funnel conversion.
Lead Capture / Email / Bots
Capturing leads through downloads, emails, and even bot interactions will continue to develop the digital experience as we move closer into the ecosystem that aligns all of this information.
Lead capturing is often facilitated through an offering of value content: white papers, downloads, webinars, and resources that take time investments to create. These are extremely beneficial placements that can work in a blog, around a site, or as specific pages and dedicated outlets.
Email subscriptions give us a way to deliver longer-form content throughout the funnel. Newsletters, blogs, or video recaps are great for capturing attention in emails daily and weekly.
Bots are a developing and important tool for marketers and technologists alike. Often a few are doing the work of many and with a digital helper, there can surely be some help to be found. Bots help facilitate minor interactions, support navigation and even provide promotional content. With feeds and profiles becoming busier and busier bots help break through the noise.
Bots can also become the main correspondence for many solutions as some are developed as the service to facilitate the exchange of information for accessing the solution.
Activities / Events / Interaction
Getting the users into the ecosystem is the first challenge, the next is giving them a reason to stay. At this point, there is a strong awareness of what you do, how, and the why should be beginning to form.
Activities should be community moments, live chats, guest interactions, podcasts or even daily/weekly videos that can give users another reason to stay engaged.
Slack communities are a great way to facilitate these interactions as they not only carry with them a lot of interaction tools but stand as a sortable archive for creating content for users to reference.
Discounts / Promotions / Asks
Once the value is delivered, the asks start becoming peripheral, at this point landing pages and ads within the ecosystem should begin to apply information and ideas that are relatable and actionable. Pairing information with product solutions and applications to drive decisions. Understanding the why should be evident at this point, if you are comparing, you should know what you are looking at and the impactfulness of the brands offering.
Revenue comes from these conversions, or micro-moment, when the user has collected their information, developed a reasonable understanding, and is ready to make a decision. The effectiveness of creating emotion, developing rapport, and providing a competitive well-developed product is at this point paramount.
The moment of truth resonates often with marketers who are looking to capitalize and convert as they monitor and measure these experiences from the top to bottom, identifying where these opportunities could improve.
A Balance of Contributions
Understanding that not one but many that may or may not be in this list are components that elevate and develop our ability to convert digitally. There are certainly benefits to identifying the multitude of components we can utilize, though understanding the principles of connecting these pieces is often overlooked. To connect the puzzle we must test, measure, and create our own unique methodologies based on our users and their perspectives.