Aligning Your Marketing Strategy with the Customer Journey


Aligning Your Marketing Strategy with the Customer Journey - Eric Sachs SEO

For a successful digital marketing campaign, you must align your marketing strategy with the customer journey so that you can reach your audience and then guide them from discovery to conversion. If you’re not working to support the customer journey, you’ll struggle to get conversions – and without conversions, you’ll have a terrible return on your paid media channel investments.

Know Your Audience

Before you start doing anything, you must know your audience. Who are they? What do they want? How much money do they make? Where are they located? What is their gender? Are they a parent? What’s their budget? What hobbies and interests do they have? How does your product or service solve their major pain points? What objections do they have to investing in your product or service?

But more than knowing your audience, it’s crucial to know your audience segmentation. Do some research and planning to determine which product and service is the best fit based on the problems you’re trying to solve. In addition to figuring out the best fit, try to figure out the users that would be the worst fit for your business.

Separate the Buyer’s Journey from the Sales Journey

The buyer’s journey and the sales journey are two different things – despite the fact that many consider them to be the same. The sales team looks at their job performance and taking the best course of action to get users to convert and becoming paying customers. The buyer, on the other hand, is becoming aware of a problem in their lives, researching what to buy, and where to buy it from to solve the problem.

As marketers, we have to figure out who the audience is. However, because customer journey paths can be completely different, it’s important to research audiences in ways that make sense for each user.

Use Audiences Strategically

As people take various turns along their buyer journey, we can use audiences to better tailor our strategies and market to those users. Most of the major advertising platforms offer audience insights tools. These tools let you know how your audience or personas translate to the targeting options available on the platforms.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics offers in-market and affinity data in a broad scope compared to other tools, but it’s possible to add additional layers of demographics for more insights.

Google Ads Audience Insights

Your audiences must have at least 1,000 users in them before the insights data generates. Once you hit that threshold, you can look to see which affinity and in-market audiences your base audience belongs to. Look at your customer lists, the ones who have converted, the high-volume purchasers, and more to get a better understanding about who is part of these audiences.

Facebook Audience Insights

This tool is a good option for creating personas to target. You can identify the top converting demographics and focus on those first. Then segment further by layering other demographics and interests. You can find new interests to target and then monitor performance to finish creating personas, and validate them.

Examine your audience data between platforms and look for patterns. This will help you determine what to test first depending on the persona and where the persona may be in the buyer’s journey. Map the path to purchase so you know what information the users need, the device they typically use, the action you want them to take, and how you’ll measure the success of that action. As you create different actions from each persona, build audiences of the actions to create remarketing audiences so you can continue to guide the user to purchase.

Optimize Your Calls to Actions

Always consider what you are asking users to do. It’s not about what we want the user to do, it’s about what’s best for the user to do in that moment. You’ve already mapped out the path to purchase, but what is action is preventing the users from moving forward. Figure out this out to make sure you have the right content and call to action to keep them moving forward.

Create a chart to find where you have gaps. On the chart, make a list of the funnel stages – awareness, interest, consideration, and action. Then, for each stage identify the call to action, the cost to the user, and the value it offers you. You should have a call to action for each stage of the funnel. Video views are an excellent thing to have at the top of your funnel because you’re not asking for a firm commitment, since that person may have no clue about your brand. This is more effective than asking for a demo on the first interaction, because it gives the user a chance to learn more about your company and brand. However, as the user moves through the funnel, it’s okay to be more aggressive with the calls to action because the user has shown more interest as time moves on.

Use Messaging in Multiple Channels

One of the most important things to remember is that people use multiple channels throughout their buyer’s journey. Users don’t only use Google or Facebook. You can’t force people to use a channel. You must go where your users go. Many channels can be used throughout the funnel, and as you expand marketing messaging through the channels, it’s important to make sure the calls to action match across the channels to ensure you’re sending the same message to users depending on their persona.

Top of the Funnel

At this stage, use interest-based targeting, lookalike audiences, affinity, and in-market audiences, along with other custom audiences to fill the funnel. Exclude the lower funnel targets to make sure your top of the funnel messaging isn’t repeated as customers move through the journey.

Middle of the Funnel

At this phase, you’ll want to go after visitor traffic, repeat customers, loyalists, and anyone who has engaged with social media posts or other mid-funnel content.

Bottom of the Funnel

At this phase, target the people who are abandoning carts, abandoning forms, people who visit high-intent pages such as pricing, and low funnel customer match audiences.

You must allow your users to choose the channel they want to convert on. Create identical audiences for each stage of the funnel on applicable channels. Make sure you’re creating identical exclusions so you’re not showing ads to users in areas outside of where they are in the funnel. The more you keep the ad message and audience targeting to the person across each channel, the better chance you have to get the user to progress through the funnel.

SEO virtuoso, CEO @Sachs Marketing Group. Focused on being of service to business owners - helping to better position them in the eyes of their audiences.

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