For any pay per click (PPC) campaign to run successfully, actions such as a search, click or purchase are imperative to performance. Now more than ever, companies should consider each stage of the buyer’s journey to fully capture leads every step of the way leading up to a purchase.
The buyer’s journey, also known as the marketing funnel, guides brands and companies by identifying the steps of the process that transforms a prospective buyer into a customer. It’s essentially the customer’s pathway to a purchase.
Understanding the buyer’s journey offers a multitude of advantages which is why it is crucial to any PPC campaign. For one, this pathway encourages marketers toward solution-focused and tailored marketing.
Not only does it provide a better understanding for companies, but it also allows them to get a firmer grasp on the emotional steps that persuade a customer to buy.
As a PPC agency, White Shark Media ensures that it leverages the buyer’s journey as it keeps costs down and does loads for any PPC campaign. The buyer’s journey is all about addressing a company’s needs at the right moment, and each stage of the process is critical for success.
Stage 1: Awareness
During the awareness stage of the buyer’s journey, prospective buyers realize that they have a problem, try to put a name to it and solve it by purchasing a product or service.
At this point, they aren’t aware of any specific company but instead are looking around online to try and get closer to their solution. This is the phase when a company wants to educate the possible customer.
A great way to garner awareness from potential buyers at this stage is through utilizing the right keywords and optimizing online presence. Agencies should focus on creating a prospecting or a top-of-mind campaign while developing a target audience based on the brand’s buyer persona demographics. We also begin considering the need for ads for Google search, social media, Microsoft, video and gaming.
By beginning PPC efforts in the awareness stage, agencies are able to reach valuable new audiences and prospective customers with non-branded keywords, encouraging audiences to know and understand the brand as they begin the decision-making process.
Stage 2: Consideration
Once the prospective buyer moves into the consideration stage, they have identified their specific problem and are starting to compare different brands. At this point, customers are researching and considering options to solve their now-identified problems.
During this stage, the marketer’s job is to create and provide content that is concentrated on the solution to the prospective buyer’s problems.
The most relevant PPC ads for the consideration stage are remarketing ads on social media platforms, as they let companies customize their display ads campaign for people who have previously visited their website. Additionally, Google display and Microsoft audience ads can be effective for audiences less likely to spend their browsing time on social media.
Particularly when it comes to remarketing efforts in the consideration stage, PPC marketers are able to target high buyer intent, advertise to specific and relevant audiences, drive deeper awareness and facilitate more engaging marketing campaigns. Most importantly, though, PPC marketing during this stage ensures the best potential for prospective buyers to understand and desire a specific brand, product or service.
Stage 3: Purchase
Eventually, in the purchase stage of the buyer’s journey, the potential customer evaluates and comes to a final decision on the right company to solve their problem. A consumer’s evaluation process differs depending on what is most important to their needs: they may research previous customer reviews, read testimonials or watch videos of the product in action.
At this point, it is the company’s job to help prospects make the final decision. PPC agencies can best support by implementing keywords that target “high-intent” audiences. Marketers should also utilize client testimonials in PPC efforts to build trust with the buyer persona and continue to create new content for remarketing efforts. Additionally, many PPC marketers choose to consider incentives for prospective buyers, including discounts and free trials, as another way to accelerate conversions.
Utilizing PPC efforts within the purchase stage allows marketers to transform leads into customers, reach high-intent searches that result in conversions, acquire repeat and lifetime customers, discover revenue-generating strategies and continue to develop successful remarketing strategies for future campaigns.
There are a number of tools that can help any company focus on the buyer’s journey, one being Compass, an all-in-one sales enablement platform. One of the features best suited for taking advantage of the buyer’s journey is time saved, which allows agencies to make as much money or more money in less time by using the right keywords and highly-targeted landing pages.
Overall, the reasons to consider each step of the buyer’s journey are quite clear as it offers many benefits, such as PPC is targeted, measurable, cost-effective, gives the marketer control, and drives immediate results. Creating content that speaks to a company’s target audience from the prospective buyer stage up until they are a customer will pay off in several ways.