February 1, 2016
Knowing what stage you are writing for will help you close deals faster
Who are your customers? How and when did they learn about you? What made them decide to give you their business instead of going to your competition? If you answered “I’m not sure” or “It was just dumb luck,” then you need to stop guessing and take control of your buyer personas and the content they receive from you.
A buyer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer, created by using real data about your existing customers and market research. The process of developing content for each buyer persona at every stage of the sales cycle is vital for the success of all businesses, even Axia Public Relations. In this post, we will share with you our methods so you can learn the benefits and how to adapt our practices for your company.
No matter what industry you are in, prospects go through the same cycle: they begin as strangers, become visitors, then leads and finally, customers and promoters. Once you know who your ideal customers are, you need to find out what moves them from awareness to consideration and then to making a decision.
The type of person who typically buys your product is your buyer persona, and you must work to narrow each persona down as much as possible. For example, instead of saying your ideal customer is a middle-aged woman, the description should be more specific: a middle-class working mom, aged 35-50, who does not have a lot of time and is looking for products that make cleaning tasks more efficient. At Axia, our target clients are medium and large corporations and their PR/marketing departments, as well as their top leadership (C- and S- suite executives) who are interested in using PR to build a stronger brand and great reputation.
Must read: 3 ways buyer personas are essential for PR
The three stages of the buyer’s journey and how you can use them for maximum impact:
1. Attraction stage.
In the attraction stage, readers are usually looking for something to do, to learn or to share on social media. This is where your optimized website and social media posts come into play.
Once you have attracted visitors to your website, it is vital to have remarkable content to keep them there longer. Blogging allows you to do this in a way that is educational, not intrusive. You can offer information and answer questions your ideal customer may be looking for.
2. Conversion stage.
The conversion stage is where you turn the visitor into a lead and begin to foster a relationship. You should design landing pages for this purpose. To be effective as your digital sales representative, the landing pages should offer an equal exchange of information and value. For example, Axia offers resources. Visitors fill out a form to receive an e-book they can download, full of useful tips and tools to grow their businesses. You can also use calls to action at the bottom of a page or links throughout.
3. Decision stage.
The decision stage is where you can shine with vendor comparisons, case studies and product literature. Emails are a good tool to deliver this information.
One way to choose the right content at the right time in this stage is segmenting your contact database. For example, Axia may send a CEO content that is different from what we send to a PR coordinator.
Tips to remember about any content you create
Always ask yourself “Will this content resonate with my buyer personas?”
Talk benefits, not features, when discussing your product or company.
Content is king and distribution is queen. Make sure you’re on the right networks to reach your target customers and using them in the most effective way.
Important: Don’t write anything without knowing what stage it’s for and how it will help move visitors to the next stage.
Use a PR firm to help you. Instead of just randomly throwing content out and hoping something sticks, develop well-written content that has a specific purpose. PR professionals are best equipped to make this happen.
Axia can help you create value-added content for your prospects at all stages of the buyer’s journey to provide information about your industry and improve readers’ lives. Contact us today to learn how we can help your company develop an inbound marketing strategy.
Lisa Goldsberry is a writer for Axia Public Relations with more than 15 years of public relations experience. She specializes in business and technology PR. Connect with Axia Public Relations on Twitter at @axiapr.
Featured image credit: 123rf.com