At Mezzanine, we think of the buyer journey in 4 categories: Attract, Convert, Close, Delight. Our B2B marketing strategies and tactics support all 4 stages, albeit with some stages getting more attention than others.
In the Attract stage, the marketing strategy focuses on brand awareness and lead generation, or what we think of as top of funnel activities. These include strategies like Google Adwords, webinars and targeted outreach programs. The right content and messaging is key to success – make sure it’s succinct, quantifiable and sets you apart from your competitors while remaining true to your offering. We know this is not easy to do!
When we are in the Convert stage in B2B marketing, we are looking to further educate prospective customers about the offering and its benefits. This could include thought leadership that doesn’t specifically mention your products or solutions. Sales collateral is also helpful to have for this stage. It’s important to ensure that you have clear calls to action in all of your marketing material to enable your prospective customers to engage with you at a personal level. The goal here is to start to draw them in so that you can move to the next level.
The next stage is Close. By now, you need to have established a personal connection with your prospective customer. Often at this stage, the lead is considered to be marketing qualified and is handed over to the sales team. But, it’s important to ask your sales team what they need to help bring people to a close. If they can’t think of anything, approach the answer differently by asking what prospective customers need reassurance around or what the frequently asked questions are during the sales conversations. This should give you some idea about what kinds of materials are needed. Perhaps a video that covers some of these higher level topics?
One of the most neglected buyer journey stages in B2B marketing is the Delight stage. This stage is reached after a deal has been signed and executed. Often the new customer is handed to a different team to begin the work they purchased. But think how you can keep in touch. Customer surveys, requests for testimonials and a newsletter or other email program are common strategies here. Also, check to see what information they need at this stage. If you offer a warranty, how easy is it for the customer to find details of the warranty or file a claim? Because this stage is so often neglected, make sure to pay special attention to it while you work out your marketing strategy and plan for the year.
Rarely is a marketing strategy divided equally between the 4 phases. Emphasis on a particular stage usually indicates where the company is having difficulties obtaining or closing business and further shows how marketing supports the larger goals of the organization.
Contact us to learn more about the tactics we use to ensure that each stage of the buyer journey is reflected in the overall plan.