What does your buyer's journey look like?
I often see Voice-over artists asking about the many different ways they can attract clients or put themselves in front of people. Today, I am going to take you through the journey we all walk through when we make a purchase of any kind, and yes, that includes media buyers, those small business owners, production companies, corporate buyers, authors, and more.
As a voice-over artist, you contribute to the world of media. You fall in line with genres like broadcast or creative talent, even if you are the voice mail message telling people what numbers to push. You are the media resource people look to when completing their commercial products, audiobooks, animations, or trailers.
Ok, now that we understand our product and the service we provide, we will focus on who will buy it and how they move through the buying process.
We will begin with the first step in Any buyer’s journey, Awareness.
Now Awareness is an interesting creature because you may not even be aware that you are seeking awareness. You just end up in a situation that needs a resolution, or you are looking for something that can help you live better. That is when you become aware that a need exists, or in the case of Steve Jobs, you are made aware.
See, Mr. Jobs believed that he could share something with people that they did not realize they needed or even wanted and bam, the iPhone was born. I was working for a local tech company at the time the iPhone was first introduced. Wow-what an amazing product I thought, but when I arrived at work, others were more pessimistic.
Why? Because yes. People would love this product and it might take market share away from existing products available in the marketplace. What happens in some of these cases is competitors do not always see these things coming and they are not ready, so they scramble to catch up, shareholders get antsy, so mistakes are made.
Anyway, Steve Jobs was on the mark and an entirely new industry was formed. Today, you can’t go anywhere without seeing Billions of people who became aware that they always needed this practical little device with them. It has made life, shopping, entertainment, and more increasingly effective, efficient, and enjoyable, but I digress...
Awareness is when someone decides a product or service will somehow make their life better, work easier, or fix a problem. These are literally the lowest level experiences in the awareness portion of the journey. It is usually the easiest if you know how to talk with people and where they are when they decide, not only in space, but time, emotion, and energy.
What are the steps people take to decide they need change? They will many times talk with friends and family, do an internet search on Google, Bing, or Yahoo, then they may move to YouTube, call some professionals, and ask people they know on social. Once they decide they understand their need, they start looking for vendors or resources that will help them solve this issue, create a better environment, or serve some other purpose.
Through this portion of the journey, you are meeting them in various places, offering advice on your blog, on social, doing YouTube videos, or you are in a place where you can take on TV and Radio commercials, or know someone in media who can interview you.
Another wonderful way to meet your next client in this area is through networking. But know, through all of this you are not selling anything, you are not saying what your business can do to solve their problem, you are simply addressing it. You are writing blogs, doing videos that you post on your website, social, in emails and you are reaching out to groups offering advice. Offline, you are attending networking meetings, giving talks, sharing your advice with people, and building trust. Maybe you even authored a book.
Ok, moving on...
The next step in the journey is what I call Consideration. This is when the lead, prospect, or potential client decides they know what they want, or they have figured out the solution to their problem or need. Now they enter the make or buy decision in some cases, in others, they are simply looking for the right vendor. This is where you are offering solutions to their problems without talking about your company or service. You are simply illustrating how these problems are solved.
For example, someone is looking for ways to be seen in a Google Search on the first page – I might write about the benefits of keyword analysis and tools you can use to obtain top-rated keywords in your industry. I might also talk about the benefits of starting a Google My Business account and keeping up your profile there. I may even go so far as to offer information about Sprout Social and the tools inside their software that really help to navigate your customer journey. Not once in any of these do I talk about my company.
Finally, we move to the decision stage, this is when the potential buyer moves to the stage of deciding whom they’ll trust to resolve their problem.
During this stage, you’re delivering all the promotional material for your business, from the clients you’ve helped to any offers you have for new clients or existing clients. Existing clients may not know that you offer this service and will look to you for their service needs, they can also offer testimonials and reviews on search engines such as Google. Yelp and other services offer ratings and review tools you can share with your potential customers and community.
Testimonials are some of the best marketing you’ll have in your arsenal, so make sure you ask your clients to offer them on your Google Reviews page, Facebook, LinkedIn, or wherever your clients find you most frequently.
There is one last level of this buyer's journey and that's Delight. In this phase, you're connecting with your community at a deeper level. You're offering support, customer service, and a feeling of validation for your followers. Their choice was the right one for them and you're validating this by being present and available when they need you or your services. They will sing your praises and help your brand expand across the digital landscape.
Well, that’s going to do it for today. Thanks for reading and I’ll be back next week with Buyer Personas. We'll explore subjects like - Who are your clients? What are their pain points and what are the best ways to reach them where they are when they need you?