This is a serious issue that every marketer, brand, agency and tech team need to address. It’s simple – now that digital media and advanced technology have transferred control of the buying journey to the buyers, anything they don’t want is a complete waste of time and budget.
Your flashy website? Buyers don’t care. What your sales person says about buyers? Forget it. Your C-suite’s advice on launch messaging? The worst. Your agency’s new strategy? Wasted.
All those efforts are going to waste. Billions of dollars lost. And the buyers are fed up.
It’s no secret that price and product have taken a back seat to the customer experiences when they interact with your brand. And yet billions of dollars annually are poured into new marketing content — assets that brands think the customers want to consume. Billions more are invested in products based on what brands think customers want.
In comparison, mere pennies are spent to listen and understand what buyers really want – the expectations buyers have and what they need to know as they navigate their journeys.
Have you ever met someone at a BBQ who talks only about himself, interrupts you, and thinks he knows everything? I hate that guy. He comes across as arrogant and self-centered. I’d rather stick my face in those 500-degree coals than listen to his opinions.
Is that your content, your product, or the reason your sales and marketing teams can’t align?
It’s not just your customer’s experience after they buy, but every moment beginning with your first contact with a new prospect. It’s all critical, and yet we continue to flood the market with our own brilliant ideas.
Listen, this isn’t rocket science, so slow down! Think, listen, learn, get out of your own way and stop bullying the marketplace with your thoughts, your sales teams’ thoughts, your executives’ thoughts, your product teams’ thoughts. It’s time to go learn from the buyer and build your strategy around their thoughts.
You’re probably thinking,’…. what are you talking about, we are listening to customers?! We have buyer and customer personas and marketing automation too. We conduct surveys with questions we think are important, our customers answered our questions, so we know what they think.
‘We, we, we’…will take you all the way home but not to the bank, it isn’t working. It doesn’t matter what youthink, your questions don’t matter. Your sales team’s opinions don’t matter. The pretty pictures and obvious stuff you’re using to profile your personas doesn’t matter either.
The only part that matters is your persona’s expectations for their buying journey.
There is only one way to know how to communicate with buyers, and that involves real insight into the questions they are asking at each step of their journey. Don’t ask for their cell phone. Don’t ask for their email. Don’t ask, answer. You should already know. Do your homework. Prepare. Study their journey. Understand it. Give the buyer what your competitors aren’t providing … give them answers to their questions so they can decide if you have what they want.
Chances are you are not that unique, what you offer really isn’t that different. How and when you answer your buyer’s questions is the absolute most important thing you can do to help customers choose you.
So now …are answers the new marketing currency? Spoiler alert – yes, yes, they are.