Small Business Coaching Tips - Small Business Coaching Tip 19 – Implementing The 6 Stages Of The Customer Buying Cycle –Executive Coaching

"You Close The Sales. We'll Generate The Leads"

Posted By: Top Team Blog

How To Increase Your Sales By 300% Or More, Raise your prices by 30% and get customers to buy from you effortlessly and at FULL price. That’s what we’ll answer in today’s Small Business Coaching video.


 

 

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Learn about 'The Buyer's Spectrum'


[TRANSCRIPTION]

Hi, I’m Dillon with Social Media Top Team.

We help business owners grow their business to the next level by leveraging social media, internet and high performance marketing strategies.

Ok,let’s get right to Today’s small business coaching tip. Many small business owners want to grow their small business yet they struggle because they can't get NEW customers on a consistent basis. They also lose the majority of their customers to their competition. Part of it is because they don’t address the buyer’s spectrum that we covered in last week’s video. We’ll provide a link to it in the description below this video.

Yet the 2nd reason why is because they do not address today’s small business coaching strategy...what we call ‘the 6 stages of the customer buying cycle’. This phenomenon is what ALL potential customers go through BEFORE they buy what you sell.

The 6 stages of the customer buying cycle can span over a matter of minutes to a matter of months or even years. 1 person might need 3 months to decide to buy from you, while someone else will only make few minutes. Regardless, both of them go through the same six stages of the customer buying cycle. ALWAYS! Let’s take a closer look.

The 6 Stages of the Customer Buying Cycle. The customer buying cycle has 6 stages Interest, Options, Research, Decision, Exclude,and Purchase

So, let's take a look at Stage1.


Stage 1) Interest. The prospective client has an interest, need or want. What happen is when your prospective client or potential client. They suddenly realize that they have a problem, a want or a need. For example, let’s say they realize that they have a leaking roof on their house. So they go to...

Stage 2) Options: Now this stage, the prospective client starts to consider various solution options & gathering information on an informal basis. They also ask friends & associates for referrals

Solution options are any other options that your prospects have for solving their problem including ones other than buying your service. It could be a do-it-yourself solution, it could be a software solution, etc. So, let's say If you’re an accountant that does taxes, their solution options could be to do their own taxes, have a friend do it, buy tax software or go to a tax preparer. If you’re a caterer, their solution options could be catering the event themselves, or going to the deli at the local supermarket, or the local pizza restaurant or hiring a caterer. You get the idea.

In this example, their solution options are doing nothing, fixing the roof themselves, hiring an unlicensed uninsured handyman named Squiggy to fix it for cheap, or hire a licensed & insured roofing company with a good reputation who also stands by their warranty.

They then gather light information like picking up a flyer at the local supermarket or saving postcards that they receive in the mail, ads, cutting out ads they see in the newspaper. They even ask friends and associates if they can recommend someone.

And this takes us to:

Stage 3) The Research Stage: The prospective client at this stage does their heavy duty research

This is when they’re searching online visiting different companies websites, calling the postcards and flyers that they gathered in the phase 2 options stage. They call up companies JUST TO GET SOME INFORMATION from them not to BUY! They may even request to have you send information sent to them.

Most companies miss out on this stage because they are not marketing themselves in the precise mediums that their potential customers are searching for them in. That’s why you MUST know where and how your customer’s search for you and find you and implement these into your business’s marketing blend.

So if they search for businesses like yours in business magazines, you should be there. If they search for you in certain types of online business directories, like these then you should be there. If they search for you in the search engines, then again, roofing companies miami, they may find you this way then you need to be there. They search for you in Craigslist, you know then that's where you want to be and you wanna have all these things in your marketing blend so you get the idea.

Otherwise none of this really applies to you because you have NO CHANCE of even getting this customer. You’ve already eliminated yourself from the running!

So after the potential customer does their heavy research they go to..

Stage 4) The Decision Stage: And this is where the prospective client makes the decision to buy your solution yet not necessarily who to buy it from.

So staying with the roofing example, the potential customer has decided not to go with the solution options of fixing it themselves, doing nothing or hiring Squiggy. They decide to go with a licensed, insured roofing company. Yet they haven’t decided which roofing company to go with.

This takes us to...

Stage 5) The Exclude Stage: And this stage, the prospective client shops and compares different vendors. And they wait for the timing to be right.

And this is when they look VERY, VERY closely at all of the information and marketing materials that they gathered in stage 3 from each company that they talked to. Some companies may have mailed them information, others emailed them information and even others may have simply told them to visit their website. By the way, potential customers DO write down what you say in person and on the phone, so bear that in mind when you and your sales team talk to them.

This is the 2nd place where many companies lose out.This stage here, stage 5. When potential customers are comparing the information and marketing materials from the different companies that they spoke with, if your marketing looks and says the exact same thing as all of the other companies in your industry, then you’ll suffer from what we call ‘The carbon copy scenario’. Like these 2 companies here. You see here two roofing companies. Let's take a quick look at this, we're gonna cover "The Carbon Copy Scenario" more the next video. If you could see, look at their websites you know, Los Angeles Roofing company here are services roof installation, been in business for 20 years and blah blah blah, alright. And then will look the other one. To tell the different company, All American Roofing. You know, about us, built up roofing, been in business since 1986 blah blah blah.

So, what happens is 'The Carbon Copy Scenario" is the consumer's inability to determine whether any of the companies they’re considering are any different, better or worse than any of the others. Since all of their marketing is underdeveloped, underleveraged and essentially says the exact same thing, the only difference the customer can determine is…the price! As a result, many small business owners are forced to compete on price, which is always a losing proposition for you. There's always someone in business wanna grow faster than you are, by discounting their prices. Yet again we’ll cover the The Carbon Copy Scenario and more importantly how to fix it, in the next video.

So whichever company’s marketing materials are able to separate them from their competition and make themselves the obvious choice to do business with, they'll stand head and shoulders above all of the other companies that the potential customer is considering. And at this point, for some unknown reason the customer keeps waiting for the timing to be just right. You know what we’re talking about. They’re just waiting for….something. It’s like…what?!? You like you want it you can afford it…then get it! What the heck are you waiting for?!? Yet they continue waiting just the same.

So in our example, the potential customer looks at 3 different roofing companies, we see 1, 2, 3look at 3 roofing companies and they're leaning towards one who has impressive marketing materials, an impressive service warranty for a 50 year roof, letters of reference from customers, video testimonials on your websites, member of the Better Business Bureau and the chamber of commerce, a portfolio of before and after pictures on their website and more. Yet they still want to wait a few more days to let it all marinate.

Finally

Stage 6) Purchase Stage: This is what all about! The prospective client chooses a vendor and buys! Money changes hands.

This is when they call you or you follow up and call them and they buy. If all of your marketing and sales strategy has addressed the 6 stages of the customer buying cycle you will experience what we call “The effortless close”. That’s when client’s buy from you virtually without any effort on your part. As opposed to you having to keep calling them back trying to pound them, or nag them, into submission. Dropping the price and your profits just to try and close them and get them to buy. That’s why our motto is ‘market hard…sell easy’.

So in our example, the potential customer called the roofing company that separated themselves from their competition and made themselves the obvious choice to do business with.

And remember the 6 stages of the customer buying cycle can span over a matter of a few minutes to a matter of years. 1 person might need 3 months to decide while someone else makes the same decision in 5 minutes. Yet they both go through the same 6 stages of the customer buying cycle…ALWAYS! Even someone whos sitting watching a TV infomercial and they gotta buy in one minute in 60 seconds, they still go through all 6 stages. This is abbreviated, it is always the same!

Something important to know is contrary to what many small business owners believe, customers are NOT always looking for the lowest price. They always want the BEST VALUE! When you understand this and address it in your marketing, you can charge MORE than everyone else in your industry and…GET IT! We help our clients do this everyday. Across 100s of industries. This applies regardless of what business you’re in. They Sell their products and services at PREMIUM prices with NO discounts. And their customers absolutely love them. And reward them with referral business!

All because they understand their customers wants and needs as they go through the 6 stages of the customer buying cycle.

Enjoy this small business coaching video? Then do us a HUGE favor and share it with 2 or 3 of your closest friends or colleagues…or more. They’ll definitely thank you for it. And, make sure you subscribe to our channel RIGHT NOW so you don’t miss out on our WEEKLY videos…where you learn innovative ways of getting more customers and growing your business to the next level.

Plus if you’d like to learn more about growing your business to the next level  with our ‘The Next Level System - small business coaching services’, which are just 160 bucks…we make it so that EVERYONE can afford it. Go to www.socialmediatopteam.com or simply click on the link below this video.

I’m Dillon  with Social Media Top Team. Don’t miss our next small business coaching video when we cover ‘How To Charge 3times MORE than your competition, and Get IT!, by breaking the carbon copy scenario’.

See you next video!

 







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