There's no denying the buyer's journey has completely changed due to the evolution of technology. There's no better way to take note of this change than by assessing today's average consumer behaviors. Customers are no longer won over by a simple catchy jingle, but rather through intent-driven moments of decision-making and preference-shaping that occur throughout the entire buyer’s journey, called micro-moments. In today’s B2B and B2C marketing, micro-moments are acknowledged as the heart of the entire buying process, and therefore the main focus for many marketing teams. Micro-moments take place among fragmented interactions, most of which tend to occur instantaneously as well as simultaneously thanks to today's advanced technology. Tremendous opportunities are presented, and sometimes lost, in the micro-moments.
“Micro-moments are vital touch points that happen at various times throughout the buyer's journey, and as they accumulate, they ultimately determine how the journey ends.” - Google
A micro-moment often occurs when a customer uses a device to research a product or service. Either the customer wants to buy something, research something, or see how other people feel about a certain product or brand. The moments are intensely rich with intent and your ability to meet the customer during these micro-moments will determine whether they make a purchase. It is important to remember that customer's expectations are higher now than they have ever been. Not only do customers want what they want, but they want it as fast as possible, preferably instantly. Take for example a customer calling to complaining about high shipping cost. Their expectation, of course, is that you will waive the shipping fee. To truly meet the customer's expectation, the only way to provide a good customer experience is to instantly tell them you can waive the shipping. The ability of a company to meet these ever increasing expectations is a pivotal factor when it comes to winning a customer’s business.
The micro-moments are a vital part of the Moment of Truth concept because they shape the entire buyer's journey. Another example of a micro-moment is when a potential customer researches your brand during a spare moment. Although the person is researching with no intent to buy, the impression you leave during that moment will dictate whether they come back to do more research at a later time.
91% of smartphone users use their devices to research a product or brand when they are in the middle of doing something else. Their minds are already distracted by the task they are in the middle of. Is your brand going to stick out enough that they remember to do a branded research at a later time? 69% of buyers admit the timing and relevance of a brand's message shape how they feel about that brand.
What are you doing to ensure you are exceeding the buyer's expectations during a micro-moment?
It's important to understand that micro-moments don't have a set chronological order in which they occur. Your ability to be present during each micro-moment is what matters. No matter the path a person travels to discover your brand, you must be prepared to deliver a good customer experience. To ensure you are present, you'll need to take to email marketing, social media marketing, website marketing, and an array of offline tactics, like print, sponsorships, and more. Most importantly, you will need to make sure all of these strategies are integrated. For example you create a branded video. It should be featured in an email campaign, a blog post on your site, and on your social media profile.
“Micro-moments are essentially the result of four intentions. Either the person wants to go somewhere, buy something, do something, or know something. No matter the intent, you have to be ready to provide answers.” - Google
Since so many micro-moments occur online, you need to make sure your internet marketing methods are created around a mobile customer experience. Slow loading speeds and a requirement to make too many clicks on your website will quickly deter a customer from even considering your brand. The key to exceeding your customers' expectations during micro-moments surrounds your ability to leverage today's latest technology and connect all of the data together.