7 min read

Avoiding Content Overload at Each Step of The Buyer's Journey

There's a lot of content out there. Are you adding to the clutter or are you helping your customer on their journey?

Lots of marketing experts stress how valuable it is to create content for your brand. They’ll typically try and help you forge the path to success via free beginner’s guides and checklists. These are valuable assets to help clarify a strategy or an idea, definitely! In fact, 81% of marketers report that the company they work for uses content as a business strategy in 2022! 2-Oct-31-2022-05-43-51-4327-PMBut still, how often do you witness a marketer point out what not to create if you want to get a leg up over the competition? It goes without saying that having a sense of content creation’s best practices is an intrinsic part of refining your strategy. However, we think it’s equally important to understand the worst practices, too.

Decluttering Content

We know content creation is a huge part of your overall marketing strategy. Still, that’s just half the battle here. There’s an even bigger challenge that marketers must face: digital clutter. Online audiences are tasked with processing one brand's message after the other, constantly. This is because the online landscape we experience today has evolved into a vicious battle for attention between brands. The frequency of these messages makes it difficult to remember any in particular. We call this phenomenon, content overload.

It’s one of the major issues we help our clients solve, especially when social media platforms are involved in their content marketing strategies. It’s an ever-present digital force that creates the perfect storm for brain fog, indecision, and poor recognition. 

"Content overload" refers to instances where a buyer is continuously shown irrelevant content from a brand.This type of content looks low-quality and discourages potential buyers from developing a more positive attitude towards your brand. Trying to solve problems for your audience without a deep understanding of the context is more than likely to scare them straight into the arms of your competition.

Low-quality content lacks the elements that any customer needs to be able to extract value from a brand’s marketing materials, throwing its strategy off-course. Content that’s deemed low-quality usually confuses buyers and provides little-to-no relevant use, value, entertainment, or engagement. 

Here’s an example of low-quality content from Adept Marketing. The main takeaway is unclear, the print is tiny, and the graphics are visually overwhelming to try and interpret. It provides very little use or value. There’s a high chance this will counteract your business’s marketing objectives, as well as deplete precious time and energy. Avoid creating content like this.

 

example of cluttered overwhelming infographic

If content isn’t created to help a target audience solve a need or a problem, it’s at risk of drowning underneath digital clutter.

 

Don’t let the clutter deter you from your quest for connection, though. Instead, raise the standards and adapt the content for your audience!

Raising Standards

Ideally, your high-quality content should be free, useful, and/or entertaining to delight your prospects with your brand. If your content can manage to attract potential new customers and simultaneously engage existing customers, you’ve succeeded in the fundamentals of inbound marketing

Here’s a great example of high-quality content from Sculpt! It showcases how the Jacksonville Jaguars brand used its Instagram account to boost engagement rates with an interactive poll for its audience. This example provides engagement via poll participation and its results show social proof! Developing your content pieces to include elements like the ones used by the Jaguars can improve your strategy’s results. 

great example of engaging content


The Digital Marketing Institute says that content creation can help shift a business’s reputation into one that is more trustworthy and memorable! If a brand creates content that its target audience can extract value from, it’s more likely that potential customers will prefer a solution from this business rather than its competitors. Meanwhile, the brand can leverage content to establish a position of authority and boost its credibility. It’s essentially a win-win! 

Strategizing solutions


solving strategiesNow that we’ve identified some best practices for creating content and explained how content overload can derail a business's marketing strategy, it’s time to talk about the best path to a solution. It seems clear as day: avoid creating low-quality content! Posting blank templates and how-to’s won’t always get the job done well, sadly. Neither will publishing tons of content that an audience can’t remember, relate to, or gain value from.

You can make sure your strategy is developed and refined to avoid succumbing to content overload. In situations like these, you may need to adopt a more Savage approach.

optimizing the Buyer’s Journey


It’s important you begin to develop your process through the lens of the Buyer's Journey. This step provides some direction for tailoring your content to the needs of your audience. It’s a trinity of stages that potential customers weave through to locate the best solution to their problem. Make sure you consider questions that provide insight on how to attract prospects, engage with your audience, and evoke feelings of delight

The Buyer’s Journey consists of three stages: awareness, consideration, and decision. To help you create the highest-quality content, we went ahead and provided a sample scenario of a buyer’s journey that will guide you throughout each of the three stages.

Stage 1: AwarenessUntitled (100 × 100 px) (190 × 190 px) (1080 × 1080 px) (3)

 
The awareness stage is the starting point for consumers. They’re able to recognize a challenge or problem that they want to solve. They also have to decide whether or not resolving the issue is a priority for them. This part of strategy development will help pinpoint the main problem that your business exists to solve. Including a more specific purpose in your content will help your brand stand out and connect you to your target audience.
 
To illustrate the awareness stage from the perspective of a potential buyer, we’ve provided the following example:
  • Imagine you start your car and drive off to begin your day at work. The wobbling indicates to you that your tire’s gone flat, so you don’t make it very far. You know you need reliable transportation to hold down a job, so replacing the tire as soon as possible is your best bet.
The marketer’s perspective of awareness in the Buyer’s Journey is just as important. If we can come to understand how consumers learn about their problems, we can better understand how to solve them. 
  • Using the same example, extend empathy and put yourself in their shoes. How are consumers learning about the problem they want to resolve? Do you think they knew right away it was a flat tire just from feeling it wobble, or did they Google photos of what flat tires look like and compare? 
  • Will avoiding the problem make it worse for the customer or solve itself on its own? If they choose to ignore the flat tire, there’s a chance it’ll fuel an even bigger, more expensive list of repairs. Also, they can’t get to work any faster by avoiding the need for a replacement. 
  • How do consumers decide whether or not to make finding a solution a priority? Ignoring the tire means ignoring the job, then, too. If they’re not attending work, they're less likely to produce enough income to meet life’s daily demands, let alone fix the tire. After confirming the problem via the help of a search engine, they decide to prioritize finding a solution. 

To ensure buyers know that your business is a viable solution, we suggest utilizing blog posts, search engine marketing, and social media marketing. This will increase online visibility, promote awareness of your brand, and encourage prospects to bring it along with them to the next phase of their journey.

 

Stage 2: Consideration

 
In this second stage, prospective buyers have a better sense of their problem and have made the choice to solve it. They’re considering various ways to find the best solution. This part of strategy development clarifies what kind of competition you’re up against! It’ll also reveal the kinds of online spaces that consumers research to weigh the options you offer versus those of your competitor.  Untitled (100 × 100 px) (190 × 190 px) (1080 × 1080 px) (190 × 190 px)
 

As the buyer, you’re considering either having the car towed to a tire shop for repair or calling your insurance company to dispatch roadside assistance, instead.

As a  marketer, consider these: 

  • How do consumers educate themselves across multiple categories? Will the buyer search for their insurance policy that’s stored in a mobile app? Do they Google repair shops and click the top link to a business’s website? 
  • What different types of solutions that consumers research to resolve a particular problem? Who or where will the buyer look to for help? Are there any types of businesses they’re forgetting might be an option? Could they change the tire by themselves or will it require a professional?
  • How do consumers establish which category will best solve their problem? Which of the options is the cheapest price? The work day creates time constraints, so what’s the quickest way to solve this?
If potential buyers are aware of how you can help them, we suggest you continue nurturing the connection by employing social media, blogging, and a clearly-defined call to action to your strategy.
 
STAGE 3: DECISION
 
Finally, a category has been chosen to solve the customer’s problem, now they must choose a company to purchase the solution from. This can help you position your business within a particular industry and help narrow-down specifics. If an audience knows where to look, they’re that much closer to finding the solution your brand offers! This step can help segment your audiences between prospective and existing ones. 
 
As the Buyer, you’ve decided to find a repair shop to solve your problem. You post a Facebook status and ask your friends to comment the names of any nearby shops they recommend. While you wait for the comments on your status to pour in, you hop back onto Google and search for repair shops that are within a 2-mile radius of your job.
 
As a marketer, dig deeper into the decision
  • What criteria will buyers use to evaluate their available options? Location, time, and price are all major factors for the buyer in this scenario. They have to decide on the business that best meets their needs. The best choice for them is one that’s nearby, inexpensive, and quick.
  • Who needs to be involved in the decision, and how might their opinion of the problem deviate from the other? Does their boss offer up any recommendations for a tire shop? Are they researching the shops that their Facebook friend recommended in their comments? 
  • What concerns, if any, do buyers have with choosing you over your competition? What sets you apart? Are there any advantages you offer that can save the buyer time and money, and have you worked those into your content? Do your competitors have more positive reviews from local customers than you?
In this final stage, you could sway their decision with your content strategy. We recommend displaying company reviews on your website, or a live chat bot to increase trust from buyers in your brand.
 
 
Content marketing is one of the best practices for digital marketing and shows tremendous growth potential! It exists to help content stand out from the digital clutter that buyers sift through to find solutions. If your strategy isn’t developed to meet the needs of your audience, though, your pieces might contribute to content overload. This will overwhelm an audience and is not helpful with meeting their needs.
 
However, this can be countered by creating high-quality content! If your content pieces are free, useful and entertaining, your brand is more likely to attract, engage, and delight potential and current buyers alike. Each piece of content should cater to at least one of the three stages of the buyer’s journey: awareness, consideration, and decision. These tactics can help your brand find where its customers are, boost credibility, and increase trust!

If you understand how crucial it is to avoid low-quality content, then you’re ready to craft high-quality content that stands out to online buyers! This article will provide structure as you map out your creative process. The path you take in order to bring your goals to life might feel a little ambiguous, and that’s okay! This is why Savage Media has a team of experts ready to empower you with the resources you need to be successful. Are you ready to create your perfect strategy? If so, we’ve got you covered with our next insight.
 
Get a head-start on your content marketing journey with this link to our 6-step guide
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