Are you jumping steps in the relationship cycle?

Recently I read a read an article from Forrester called: “B2B Marketers Have A Blind Spot: The Buyer Journey”. It was the first paragraph and diagram (below) that caught my eye:

“Last month, I was immersed in face-to-face dialogue with senior B2B marketing leaders from well-known companies who were attending Forrester Forums and FLB events, and one thing was blatantly clear. These leaders are so focused on their initiatives, campaigns, and programs that they have lost sight of the thing that matters most: the customer.”

B2B Marketers Have A Blind Spot- The Buyer Journey

Why? Because the lessons in the article are not restricted to big business or B2B business but are lessons for businesses of all sizes and focus.

Whilst I found their diagram (above) to be useful I also found it to be a little too mechanistic and focused on systems and requirements and solutions and decisions and processes and etc etc. In the end, it left me feeling a little wanting as I believe it doesn’t capture a really important element of finding and keeping customers. I found their approach wanting for the human touch.

Therefore, when thinking about your customer’s journey and the process of helping them buy I think it is important to add in the human and relationship touch. As a result, I like the following diagram as a way of describing the way that a relationship with a customer can and will evolve.

Relationship marketing

This is important. Traditionally and historically we set up our marketing to move us go from ‘know’ to ‘buy’. That doesn’t seem to work for most businesses any more.

With such an open market and so much choice around now, this is no longer a sustainable strategy. Smart businesses know that they need to develop their customer relationships step by step, building trust and credibility as they go, moving their customers from know to like to try to buy and on…….

Have you reviewed your marketing lately? Are you jumping steps in the relationship cycle?

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