How to Grow Your Small Business?: The 3 Simple Steps Buyer’s Journey
3 Simple Steps in solving a “problem”
Before we answer the above question on whether Buyer’s Journey is a vital step in developing a marketing plan for small businesses, let’s define what Buyer’s Journey is. Buyer’s Journey is a process potential consumers (or buyers) experience to be 1) aware of a product or service, 2) evaluate the product or service, and 3) purchase a product or service. This buyer’s journey may not need to start from step 1 if a consumer is, for example, a repeat buyer. HubSpot explains this journey in 3 simple steps:
Step 1 Awareness Stage
This is the very first step for any consumers who have a “new problem” or “problem”. Sometimes, I call that a dilemma or an opportunity. The severity of the problem varies and what constitutes a “problem”. For example, I have a habit of keeping a bottle of ice water in my bag. However, the bottle not only does not maintain the coldness, it also sweats. Thus, causing my bag to be wet on the inside and the everything in the bag, especially paper products, gets ruined.
Step 2 Consideration Stage
This step is when the consumer defines their problem and try to find a solution to solve it. What do you mean by “define”? It means the consumer understands the problem and figures out he/she can do to eliminate this problem. This step will involve searching for a viable solution through the Internet such as search engines, websites, blogs, e-word-of-mouth, and other social media outlets.
Step 3 Decision Stage
This is the last stage of the buyer’s journey. This step happens when the consumer is certain what he/she needs to solve the problem. For example, going back to my wet water bottle. I will weigh my options based on my budget. I could use a sleeve for my bottle, buy a thermal flask that doesn’t sweat, or not do anything.
These 3 steps are actually an abbreviated version of the consumer’s decision-making process. This process has been used in academic journals, marketing textbooks and also by marketing professionals. Marketo has a blog that writes out this 5 step decision-making process which can be tied in with the buyer’s journey. The main difference between the 5-step decision-making process and the buyer’s journey is that the 2nd and 3rd step of the decision-making process is being consolidated as Step 2 in the buyer’s journey. In addition, there is no post-purchase step in the buyer’s journey. Another marketing model which is widely used is the Inbound Methodology. We will talk about the Inbound Methodology in the next blog!
Apart from this buyer’s journey, there are also other factors we need to consider when driving brand awareness for your company. Read more in our previous blog here!