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I've summarized an amazing research report by McKinsey Quarterly about how the internet has changed the consumer decision journey. There is some great insights for marketers to help better understand their customers in any industry
The Consumer Decision Journey<br />McKinsey Quarterly <br />If marketing has one goal, it’s to reach consumers at the moments that most influence their decisions.<br />Marketing has always sought those moments, or touch points, when consumers are open to influence.<br />We developed this approach by examining the purchase decisions of almost 20,000 consumers across five industries and three continents.<br />
The Consumer Decision Journey<br />McKinsey Quarterly <br />The way that consumers research and buy products has changed dramatically.<br />Consumers are no longer passive, they are actively seeking information to better<br />understand their options. Consumers are now exposed to ongoing messages. <br />When a trigger hits, it forces the consumer to create a list of brands for consideration. This initial consideration list is fairly narrow list as there is lots of clutter. <br />Once the consumer decides they are going to buy a product, the move into active evaluation. Here the number of brands that they are considering actually increases. In this stage, the consumer is intent on purchasing and becomes more aware of ads that they didn’t notice before and are actively searching for information on the product and their options. <br />Closure is the moment of purchase. Many consumers are still uncertain on the brand they’ll purchase when they come into the store.<br />Loyalty Loop – there are active and passive loyalists. Active are people who don’t consider other brands when it’s time to repurchase a product. Passive Loyalists are the consumers who are equally or more open to buy other brands during their repurchase evaluation phase.<br />
The Consumer Decision Journey<br />McKinsey Quarterly <br />Align your marketing message with how consumers research and buy products<br />Where are your priorities on marketing? Ie. are your marketing dollars focused on closure or on improving initial consideration or post purchase experience? The latter two have far greater leverage in terms of affecting sales<br />Where is your greatest opportunity? During the Initial consideration and Active evaluation phase. Provide the right facts & message consumers in this window<br />Make it easy & fun for people to learn about your products. Ie. websites, testimonials, games, technical manuals, test drives, in person brand experiences ie. camp jeep, pop up stores, virtual army experience<br />Winning in store. Final brand choice is most often done in store. <br />Aligning your customer facing activities for a seamless brand experience for the consumer across their decision journey<br />
The Consumer Decision Journey<br />McKinsey Quarterly <br />There are touch points that influence a consumer. That is any way a consumer can learn more about the brand their buying Ie. friend, consumer reviews, website, traditional advertising<br />Consumer Driven – consumer is reaching out for information. 2/3 of the influence are the touch points made during active evaluation. These touch points include Word of Mouth, Consumer Reviews, Internet Searches, Blogs etc. It’s important to develop ways your company can be featured on these consumer driven platforms. Unlike camping, leave a trace.<br />Company Driven – traditional advertising is a very critical influence during initial consideration phase.<br />You need to have enough presence on consumer driven platforms ie. blogs, word of mouth, 3rd party internet reviews etc. Otherwise when a consumer is actively evaluating, they can’t find you.<br />