[Infographic] Marketing Funnels & Customer Journey Maps: Two Buzzwords You Need to Know

If you’ve spent time in the sales or customer service departments, you’ve probably thought a lot about how customers come to interact with your company. If you haven’t, it’s important that you think about it not only from your perspective but from the customer’s perspective. There are a couple of different business terms that can help you delineate and describe as well as understand what that means.

Let’s start with the marketing funnel. This is a way of describing how customers come to know about and finally to turn from leads into sales. Of course, a lot of people are familiar with this and older iterations of the marketing funnel were just that — a funnel-like process where there were a lot of leads of various sorts at the top of the funnel, then a narrowing of the funnel as some people stayed and some people left. But what does the funnel look like today and how does it differ from the customer journey? This graphic below explains it.

Understanding the Buyer’s Journey in B2B Marketing: The Key to Creating Great Content

The presence of content marketing in the daily life of a consumer has increased drastically in recent years. In fact, 76% of B2C marketers and 88% of B2B marketers implement content strategy into their marketing mix, according to the Content Marketing Institute. However, while many businesses are making use of content marketing, it does not necessarily mean that they are successful at it.

In order to implement an effective content marketing campaign that amplifies your content, it is essential that you create content for each stage of the buyer’s journey. A buyer goes through 3 different stages (awareness, consideration, and decision) before making a purchase. By tailoring your content to potential buyers in each stage of the journey, you are more likely to turn leads for your business into repeat customers.

What is Content Marketing Really About?

In its simplest form, content marketing is the creation and distribution of content. However, it’s really much more than that. In order for content to truly do its job (i.e. “drive profitable customer action”), it needs to be relevant to the buyer that it is intended for. Essentially, a successful content marketing campaign is one that provides value to a specific target.

So how do you make sure your content is relevant for your target audience? Enter the three stages of the buyer’s journey!

The Awareness Stage

When potential buyers are in the awareness stage, they have just identified an issue or need. In order to engage with buyers in this first stage, your content should bring awareness to a specific problem before aligning this problem with various business-specific issues.

To help the customers better understand this issue or need, it’s important to stick to contentthat is educational and can provide further insight. This is not the time to introduce your product – that comes later. For now, the best way to provide value to buyers in the awareness stage is by demonstrating your knowledge on what their pain points are.

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